With Swisscom, the University of St. Gallen (HSG) has found an ideal partner for the migration of its Domino/Notes mailboxes to Exchange. Experience, transparency and commitment were the qualities required.
The HSG is a university for business administration, law and the social sciences as well as for international relations. It is one of the leading business schools in Europe. Since 1990, its employees have been communicating via a Domino/Notes platform. “A couple of years ago, the strategic decision was made to replace the platform in the medium term,” says Stefan Heggli, Head of Server Systems. “In a survey of employees, many expressed the desire to be able to work with Outlook.” This is why we have moved forward this major partial replacement.” The migration to an Exchange platform required for this was indeed a Herculean task – not only in view of the large data volume. Stefan Heggli: “The goal was that the migration should affect our users as little as possible.”
Following a public invitation to tender for the migration project, the HSG opted for Swisscom as a partner. The specialists at Swisscom did not just handle smooth data migration. Several customised solutions could not yet be replaced because they continue to require e-mail functionality: The Notes platform remains in operation even following the migration. Therefore – and because the migration was done in phases – Swisscom ensured that the free/busy times as well as the address book search and resource reservation worked with both systems. In addition, the message formats between the systems were automatically adapted. As a basis for the complex project, the Swisscom experts had prepared a migration concept. After a proof-of-concept, the migration was implemented in several stages: test, pilot and rollout.
Stefan Heggli believes that two key factors contributed to success: “For one, it was extremely important that, from the very onset, we planned the migration together with Swisscom. Secondly, we had – throughout the entire project period – one central contact person at Swisscom, who matched our project team to a T, was highly skilled and experienced and showed great commitment. Swisscom has kept its promise with regard to this complex project. Although our operation is only medium-sized, we felt we got the same excellent service as one of the major players.”