A Word from Our Partners: Scott Kunau from IGTG - Part 2
Last week, I published the first part of my recent chat with Scott Kunau of the Innovative Global Technology Group (IGTG) on what sets their company apart and makes them such a hit with their clients. In the second part, Scott talks about his methodology to email archiving and migrations, some of the real-life challenges such projects involve, and why he recommends M+Archive to overcome them.
RD: In your experience what’s the primary reason for migrations away from GroupWise?
SK: Half the time, the GroupWise migrations we’ve seen happen have to do with some non-technical, purely political reason. In the other half of the cases, there are serious technical reasons having to do with replacing a messaging platform that doesn’t support a key company application easily.
Another major problem is the lack of Novell talent in the younger generation of IT technicians. They have little or no foundation in Novell technology and are usually unwilling to learn. We have an extremely talented young computer engineer on our team that we are mentoring in Novell technology. However, he is the exception to the rule, as the majority of younger IT technicians and engineers don't see the value in learning about Novell technology and that gives us an edge. In a way, this is one of the things that sets our company apart: our strong technology foundations make learning complex technology much easier for our clients. Plus, we're not biased about technology solutions.
But we make sure our clients are informed about a migration project they undertake. It is our job to ask the tough questions about cost, complexity, and overhead. We bring up all the things they need to consider before embarking on such a project. And we always make sure they fully understand the planning stage, which is more important than the implementation stage.
RD: Does this imply that planning takes a long time?
SK: It really depends on the internal policies of the organization. Some companies want extensive preparation and are ready to invest heavily in having engineers in-house to plan, document, and test the project management plan for weeks on end.
We offer a more efficient and cost effective solution. We set up a small fully virtualized pilot environment, work through the issues we encounter, do small test groups making sure that everything coexists together. When everybody is satisfied, we go ahead and schedule a specific date or period of time when the conversion takes place. In some cases, I believe we've saved our customers thousands of dollars with this approach.
RD: What can you say about your relationship with Messaging Architects?
SK: I think that we share are a lot of common values that make this a mutually beneficial partnership. We are both smaller and flexible organizations that offer solutions to make our clients successful, while also equipping them with the tools and knowledge to better manage their IT infrastructures.
We have had a lot of success implementing M+Archive at client sites, whether to address email archiving and eDiscovery needs or in cases of an email migration. M+Archive allows us to handle email migrations in such a way that only the necessary amount of data is migrated to the new email system, while the bulk remains in an archive repository that is fully accessible to the end users. The technology allows us to handle email migrations in a way that doesn't make it the "project from hell" but allows us to perform 90% of the work without impacting the end users. When all the prep work is done, we can switch them over to the new system quite painlessly.
Clients also appreciate the fact their investment in M+Archive continues to bring them value after they switch to Exchange. Recently, we helped a client upgrade to the latest version of M+Archive from the previous version which they were using on GroupWise. After they migrated to Exchange, we converted their GroupWise XML archive to and Exchange XML archive and they continued to use M+Archive on the new Exchange system.
I think there a lot of opportunities for Messaging Architects' technology and IGTG's expertise.
– Roumiana Deltcheva