Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity ... Business Productivity Online Services ... The Lure of Cloud Computing ... Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services ...
Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) Teaming with Accenture and Avanade Helps Companies Maximize Value in Adoption of Cloud Services Published March 2010 Abstract Cloud computing provides an attractive option for CIOs who are looking to empower workers, reduce costs, and free scarce internal resources to add value in new ways. For many companies, the Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) Suiteincluding Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Office Live Meeting, and Office Communications Onlineis a strong candidate for starting down the road to cloud computing. To support growing client interest in BPOS, Accenture and Avanade are augmenting their services to help clients evaluate its suitability, mitigate potential risks, ensure a smooth transition, and maximize business value. The remainder of this document examines the How and Why behind that effort to embrace BPOS, including the value that Accenture and Avanade see in promoting it as an alternative to traditional, on-premises implementations of Microsoft messaging and collaboration solutions. The information contained in this document represents the current view of Microsoft Corporation on the issues discussed as of the date of publication. Because Microsoft must respond to changing market conditions, it should not be interpreted to be a commitment on the part of Microsoft, and Microsoft cannot guarantee the accuracy of any information presented after the date of publication. This white paper is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS, IMPLIED, OR STATUTORY, AS TO THE INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT. Complying with all applicable copyright laws is the responsibility of the user. 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Background.............................................................................................. 1 The Lure of Cloud Computing................................................................ 3 A Logical First Step ................................................................................. 5 BPOS: An Overview ................................................................................ 6 Offerings for Information Workers and Deskless Workers .............................. 7 Significant Business Advantages .................................................................... 7 Accenture and Avanade Services for BPOS ........................................ 9 Assessment and Planning Services ................................................................ 9 Transition and Migration Services ................................................................... 9 Operations and Support Services ................................................................... 9 Internal Sales and Delivery Readiness ......................................................... 10 Early Market Traction ............................................................................ 11 Conclusion ............................................................................................. 13 For More Information .................................................................................... 13 CONTENTS Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 1 Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services, and outsourcing company. Combining unparalleled experience, comprehensive capabilities, and extensive research, Accentures "high performance business" strategy builds on the companys broad expertise to help clients create sustainable business value. With approximately 177,000 people working in more than 120 countries, Accenture generated more than U.S.$21billion in revenue in its 2009 fiscal year. In 2000, Accenture (then called Anderson Consulting) entered into a $1 billion joint venture with Microsoft to form Avanade, a business technology services provider dedicated to using the Microsoft platform to help enterprises achieve profitable growth. Over the last 10 years, Avanade has grown to several hundred million dollars in annual revenue, with more than 9,100 employees who serve customers in 20 countries. Since the formation of Avanade, the three companies have worked closely together, drawing upon their combined strengths to help customers achieve sustainable business value. One such effort started in 2005, when they began collaborating on the next generation workplacea strategic initiative that combines business process engineering with Microsoft software for messaging, collaboration, social computing, and unified communications to maximize workforce productivity and drive greater business value. From a strategic perspective, the next generation workplace shifts how IT services are delivered from a focus on products and product roadmaps to one based on business objectives and the capabilities that employees need to achieve those goals. This enables companies to connect people, processes, and technology in a way that improves productivity, efficiency, and operational costsfor example, by helping employees work together more easily, communicate better across geographic boundaries, and assign work to the most appropriate location. The next generation workplace isnt just about technology or tools, says Bob Hersch, Global Managing Director for the Workplace Technology and Collaboration Practice at Accenture. Its about setting a strategic plan that aligns a clients workplace environment to its business objectives, so that the workplace delivers the greatest value. Service levels and productivity increase through customized integration of processes and tools, and costs are lower because hardware and software are configured precisely to business roles. Technology components of the next generation workplace are constantly changing as new ones become available. Contrary to what the name may imply, the next generation workplace isnt about whats coming in the future, says Hersch. Instead, its a conversation with clients about how they can take BACKGROUND Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 2 advantage of the technologies that are available today to lower costs and increase workplace productivity. Toward that end, with growing interest among enterprises in the benefits of cloud computing, Accenture and Avanade are adapting the next generation workplace to include the Microsoft Business Productivity Online (BPOS) Suite. The remainder of this document examines the How and Why behind that effort to promote BPOS as an alternative to traditional, on-premise implementations of Microsoft messaging and collaboration solutions. Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 3 Members of todays enterprise workforce must remain productive wherever they are, whenever the work demands. Teams are often virtual and globally dispersed, forming and disbanding as needs dictate, and include contractors or employees of other companies. At the same time, business leaders face major pressures to cut costs, maintain flexible cost structures, address security risks, and maximize the use of scarce resourcesall in the face of rapidly changing markets, continued globalization, and an always-on business environment. Cloud computingthe dynamic provisioning of software from third parties over a networkprovides an attractive new option for addressing these challenges. By allowing companies to access IT-based services such as infrastructure, development, applications, and business processes over the Internet, a cloud-based model provides rapid acquisition, low to zero capital investment, relatively low operating costs, and variable pricing that is tied directly to use. Cloud computings promise of rapid, pay-as-you-go scalability is immensely attractive to CIOs who are under pressure to do more with less, says Aziz Virani, Executive Vice President of Global Technologies and Solutions at Avanade. Companies not only are looking at cloud computing as a means to cut costs, but also as way of accelerating deployment and freeing internal resources to focus on adding value in new ways. Continues Virani, Therein lies the lure of cloud computing. A recent survey1 of more than 500 Clevel executives and IT decision makers shows that companies around the world are becoming more familiar and comfortable with cloud computing as a viable model for technology adoption, with huge increases in those who are testing or have plans to implement such solutions. I rarely meet a CIO who doesnt want to understand his or her options in this area. Accenture is seeing the same trend. Companies are considering cloud computing because it accelerates deployment, conserves resources, and provides an attractive option to the up-front investment of capital, says Hersch. However, like any disruptive technology, it poses new challenges as well as benefits. Clients are curious, but theyre also cautious in that they want to first understand the economic model, support model, and associated risks. 1 Global Survey of Cloud Computing, September 2009, Avanade. THE LURE OF CLOUD COMPUTING A recent survey of more than 500 Clevel executives and IT decision makers shows that companies around the world are becoming more familiar and comfortable with cloud computing as a viable model for technology adoption.I rarely meet a CIO who doesnt want to understand his or her options in this area. - Aziz Virani, Executive Vice President, Global Technologies and Solutions, Avanade http://www.avanade.com/_uploaded/pdf/avanadethoughtleadershipcloudsurveyexecutivesummary833173.pdf Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 4 Adds Virani, Many CIOs understand the benefits of cloud computing, but arent sure where to start or how to make the transition. It reminds me of the offshoring trend a few years ago, in that everybody wants to know what others are doing, whats the first application they should outsource, and how to best go about it. Thats where Avanade and Accenture can help, and we believe the opportunity is large enough that were making significant investments in cloud computing. Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 5 With companies looking for a low-risk way to dip their toes into cloud computing, many CIOs are asking the same question: Where do we start? CIients are worried about security, disruptions to users, and maximizing ROIall while getting the right capabilities into users hands, says Hersch. As with any disruptive technology, to minimize risk and maximize the rewards, potential new solutions must be evaluated carefully. For many Accenture and Avanade clients, the Microsoft BPOS SuiteExchange Online, SharePoint Online, Office Live Meeting, and Office Communications Onlineis a good candidate for starting down the road to cloud computing. BPOS is a great option for clients that already have in-house implementations of Exchange Server, SharePoint Server, Live Meeting, or Office Communications Server, says Hersch. Its even more attractive for clients looking to implement those solutions for the first time, in that they can be deployed faster and with lower up-front costs. Continues Hersch, Remember that the next generation workplace is about helping clients best take advantage of what exists today. Most organizations are already running Microsoft messaging and collaboration software, or are thinking about deploying it. The fundamental value of the next generation workplace hasnt changedtheres just a new delivery option, with a different cost model and some very attractive benefits. And from a solution provider perspective, there are many new client conversationsand potential client engagementsthat are enabled by that new delivery option. Many of the reasons that Accenture and Avanade recommend BPOS for cloud services are the same reasons that enterprises prefer Microsoft technology for in-house deployments. Other companies may be positioning their online services against BPOS, but those products lack the familiar user experience and are generally less enterprise-ready, says Virani. By far, Microsoft has the fuller, more robust, and more mature suite. And workers are already productive with Microsoft software, so theres no need to retrain them. Finally, software such as Microsoft Exchange Server was designed for the enterprise, whereas other online offerings have their roots in the consumer world. Virani sees integration as another strong advantage that BPOS provides for todays modern enterprise. BPOS services are based on the same architecture as in-house deployments of those products, which eliminates the need to duplicate core IT services and ensures more seamless integration with internal applications and those of business partners, he says. Microsoft .NET is a proven means of integration across the companys software stack, regardless of whether solution components are running on-premises or in the cloud. I cant imagine achieving the same level of integration between other services running in the cloud and a companys internal, Windows-based systems. A LOGICAL FIRST STEP Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 6 A set of messaging and collaboration solutions hosted by Microsoft and delivered via a subscription model, Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) are designed to give businesses streamlined communication and collaboration along with high availability, comprehensive security, and simplified IT management. Businesses benefit from rapid deployment and always up-to-date technologies, freeing internal IT resources from day-to-day administration and reducing the need for infrastructure investments. In addition, BPOS services can be integrated with each other and with on-premises solutions to enable seamless, standardized processes and workflows. Key capabilities provided by the Business Productivity Online Suite include: E-mail and calendar functions. Exchange Online includes advanced e-mail, calendar, contact, and task management featuresincluding spam filtering, anti-virus protection, and synchronization of mobile devices. The service can be accessed using Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 and Microsoft Office Outlook Web Access, which enables users to access their e-mail messages using almost any Web browser. Document collaboration, shared workspaces, and social computing. SharePoint Online enables users to share and work together on documents, maintain version control for shared documents, create intranet sites to manage projects and project workflows, post calendar information. Users can also take advantage of social computing features, such as wikis, blogs, podcasts, activity feeds, social and taxonomy tags, and message boards. Web conferencing. Office Live Meeting enables users to hold online meetings with colleagues, customers, and partners in real time. Participants can convene online to share documents, ask questions, work on a virtual "whiteboard," and talk to each other during the meeting. IM and Presence Awareness. Office Communications Online delivers instant messaging (IM) and presence functionality to enable real-time, person-to-person communication via text, voice, and video. Workers can quickly detect a colleague's availability and connect rapidly using a reliable, security-enhanced IM solution. The BPOS suite also includes comprehensive support for migration, e-mail coexistence, and system administration. In addition, BPOS provides an online Administration Center for importing user accounts, migrating e-mail accounts, creating distribution lists and SharePoint site collections, and submitting service requests to Microsoft Online Services Technical Support. BPOS: AN OVERVIEW Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 7 Offerings for Information Workers and Deskless Workers To support workforce segmentation, BPOS is offered as two different suites: Business Productivity Online Standard Suite, which provides a full-featured desktop experience for information workers Business Productivity Online Deskless Worker Suite, which is delivered as a Web-only experience for workers who do not require the processing power and abilities of a full desktop client, such as salespeople in retail stores, workers on the factory floor, and so on. This provides a cost-effective means of providing these workers with only the capabilities that they need, rather than having to take a one-size-fits-all approach. Significant Business Advantages Through cloud-based delivery, BPOS provides users with access to the latest Microsoft messaging and collaboration tools while helping to relieve the burden of deploying, managing, and maintaining internal systems. Costly deployment and time-consuming maintenance are avoided, freeing up IT budgets and personnel for initiatives that can deliver true competitive advantage. Compared to on-premises deployments, key advantages provided by BPOS include: Enhanced operational flexibility. Through cloud-based delivery, BPOS provides rapid deployment and scalability to meet evolving business needs. Monthly fees are predictable, with the BPOS subscription model enabling companies to move capital expenditures (CAPEX) into operational expenditures (OPEX). As a result, internal IT resources are freed to focus on more strategic work. Always up to date., Technologies delivered through the cloud always remain up-to-date as new versions become available. In addition, as new services and capabilities are introduced, clients can subscribe to them without major additional investments in training or infrastructure. Improved capability. Worker productivity is enhanced through a rich, integrated, turnkey solution for e-mail, instant messaging, social computing, Web conferencing, and team collaboration. These streamlined applications improve agility and innovation, with enterprises able to easily adopt and exploit new services as BPOS continues to grow and evolve. Security and reliability. Security and data hygiene are enhanced through multilayer antivirus scanning and spam filtering. BPOS is hosted at geographically redundant data centers, with Cybertrust and SAS70 compliance. Reliability is ensured through 99.9 percent scheduled service uptime and supported by a financially-backed service level agreement. Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 8 There are many advantages to BPOS, one of which is that its more cost-effective and financially predictable, says Virani. Adds Hersch, For many enterprises, whats even more attractive is that IT staff are freed from everyday system managementfor example, keeping Exchange Server running and Active Directory clean. BPOS provides a way to offload those day-to-day management chores so that internal IT staffers who know the business can focus on new challenges and opportunities. Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 9 To support growing client interest in cloud computing and offer an attractive hosted option for messaging and collaboration, Accenture and Avanade are augmenting their service offerings to help clients determine if BPOS is right for them, facilitate the transformation, and provide extended service management around core BPOS servicesall geared to helping clients maximize business value. Assessment and Planning Services Companies contemplating a move to BPOS must consider several factors up-front. Assessment services are designed to help companies evaluate the business case and infrastructure impacts of a BPOS migration and deployment, helping clients answer questions such as: How do I know if BPOS is right for my business and my end user community? How do I effectively migrate to BPOS while minimizing end user and legacy application impacts? How can I get the most from my BPOS investment? Transition and Migration Services Transition services help prepare clients and the environment for the integration, migration, and deployment of BPOS. Those services can include: Active Directory Cleanup and Standardization, as required to minimize future issues and simplify the synchronization of the directory with BPOS. Mailbox Migration, including planning and migration services based on a phased approach and realistic timelines to rapidly deliver a positive ROI. Application Migration and Integrationincluding architectural design, phased implementation, and application lifecycle management to ensure effective migration and integration of legacy line-of-business applications. User Communications and Training, as required to help ensure a smooth transition to the new BPOS environment. Operations and Support Services Operations and service management provide additional, ongoing management and support capabilities, as may help clients to fully benefit from their new BPOS solutions. These services can include: SharePoint Center of Excellence, an Accenture and Avanade-staffed center of excellence within client organizations, as need to help facilitate ACCENTURE AND AVANADE SERVICES FOR BPOS Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 10 the delivery and governance of enterprise portal and collaboration solutions based on SharePoint Online. Directory Managementincluding administration, engineering, and integration support for a clients Active Directory, LDAP, or other directory technologies. Service Management and Governance, as required to integrate, coordinate, and enable consistent support across all IT infrastructure services delivered to clients. Service Desk support, providing a single point of contact for BPOS-related end-user incidents or requestsincluding full level-one helpdesk staffing, if needed. Internal Sales and Delivery Readiness Accenture and Avanade are making major internal investments around BPOS. However, the required investment isnt as large as you may think, says Hersch. When you look at it from a top-down perspective, were simply extending our existing next generation workplace initiative to include both on-premises and BPOS delivery methods. Were refreshing our sales campaigns, augmenting our skills and capabilities, and adapting existing methods, estimators, and accelerators to support BPOS as well as on-premises deployment. Virani echoes that sentiment, stating that a large part of the effort is in bringing the Avanade workforce up to speed to proactively sell and deliver BPOS. We have hundreds of people who are already experts in the various technologies, and have been sending those personnel to Microsoft training sessions on BPOS, he says. We believe the business opportunity around BPOS is huge, so were making significant investments and setting concrete goals with respect to getting the BPOS message out to clients. Of course, we were also early in getting certified as a Microsoft BPOS Advisor. Beyond preparing their people, both companies are enhancing their technology toolkits to support the delivery of BPOS. Weve invested many millions of dollars over the past years building tools and methodologies to support Notes-to-Exchange migrations, Active Directory management, SharePoint architectures, and so on, and were currently adapting those tools for BPOS, says Virani. In fact, weve just approved the building of an offshore BPOS migration factory, as a means of doing migration work at scale. Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 11 Accenture and Avanade are already seeing strong interest in BPOS, with client engagements at all stages of the sales and delivery pipeline. Some clients are actively coming to us with an interest in BPOS, and in other cases were bringing the option to them, says Hersch. Either way, it leads to the same options and opportunities. Whats important is that we need to be the first to have those conversations with clients, before someone else does. With BPOS already available in 22 countries2, the sales pipeline is growing rapidly. Microsoft is tracking BPOS opportunities associated with Accenture and Avanade in its CRM system, representing more than a million seats. Avanade is tracking a global sales pipeline of some 30 to 40 enterprise customers, each with between 3,000 and 70,000 potential seats. Accenture is tracking more than 20 opportunities in the United States alone, representing some 1.3 million BPOS seats. Almost every CIO wants to be educated on BPOS, and were actively engaging with clients as trusted advisors, says Hersch. Of the BPOS Services, two are seeing exceptionally strong market interest: Exchange Online and SharePoint Online. Most companies already run Exchange Server, and Exchange Online provides an attractive option for transitioning that existing functionality to the cloud, says Mark Kashman, Technical Product Manager for SharePoint Online at Microsoft. On the other hand, SharePoint is a great example of how BPOS can accelerate the deployment of new capabilities within the enterprise. SharePoint Server is the fastest-growing server product in Microsofts history, with more than 17,000 customers and 100 million plus seatsand along with strong interest in SharePoint comes increasing demand for choice from a delivery perspective. It typically takes weeks to months for an in-house deployment of SharePoint Server, but SharePoint Online can be deployed in a matter of hours or daysat the low cost of just a few dollars per seat per month. Of course, companies that deploy SharePoint Online today also will benefit from all of the great new features to be introduced in SharePoint 2010. In addition, companies are evaluating hybrid deployments to get the best of both worlds: appropriate control over their data together with true economies of scale. Co-existence of SharePoint Server on-premises and SharePoint Online 2 BPOS services are currently available in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States. EARLY MARKET TRACTION Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 12 will drive a whole new range of scenarios as customers seek the value of things like federated search, line-of-business connectivity, data aggregation, and more, says Kashman. Hersch also expects many new BPOS rollouts to be hybrid deployments to start, with companies transitioning either part of the workforce or a subset of functionality to BPOS while the rest remains supported on-premises. Very few companies are likely to jump in with both feet, says Hersch. Most likely, companies will transition a part of the organization to BPOS, or host e-mail services in the cloud while continuing to run Office Communications Server or SharePoint Server internally. In fact, we encourage CIOs to adopt a phased approach, in that it makes it easier to assess early issues and quantify the benefits. Adds Virani, Our clients have hundreds of enterprise applications, so they wont be migrating to the cloud in a wholesale fashion anytime soon, he says. That said, hybrid deployments are already a way of life, with most clients already taking advantage of software running outside of the data center. This plays nicely to the integration advantages that BPOS provides over other cloud-based servicesand to our strengths in helping clients decide what to move to the cloud and how to integrate those services back into the data center. Talking to Customers About Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS) 13 With growing interest among CIOs in cloud computing, BPOS represents a significant opportunity for Accenture and Avanade to assist clients who are looking for a trusted advisor to help evaluate its suitability, assist with migration, and provide ongoing support. We need to remain market-driven, and there isnt a CIO out there who doesnt want to understand the options around cloud computing, says Virani. BPOS is a great first step toward cloud computing for many clients and, as such, poses a tremendous business opportunity for us. However, with opportunity comes accountability, which is why were gearing-up to provide the guidance and expertise that clients have come to expect. Adds Hersch, Cloud computing is a fundamental long-term shift in how technology services will be delivered in the 21st century. Some may perceive the investments were making in BPOS as a risk, but we believe those investments are essential to Accenture and Avanade remaining ahead of the curveand trusted advisors to many of the worlds leading companies. With expertise in business process engineering, migration and implementation experience, and one of the highest concentrations of Microsoft expertise in the world, Accenture and Avanade are in a unique position to capitalize on BPOS, which already boasts more than 1 million seats. We help clients make informed decisions in choosing the best, most appropriate capabilities for their businesses, says Hersch. And when it comes to delivery, weve completed more than 20 million mailbox migrations, more than 1,000 Active Directory implementations, and have vast experience transitioning work from on-premise to an outsourced environment. Given those strengths and the strong, growing interest in cloud computing, the decision to embrace BPOS was an easy one. For More Information More information on the Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite can be found at: http://www.microsoft.com/online/business-productivity.mspx More information on Accentures Workplace Technology and Collaboration Practice can be found at: http://www.accenture.com/Global/Technology/Infrastructure_Solutions/Workplace_Technology/default.htm More information on Avanades BPOS practice and services can be found at: http://www.thecloudadvantage.com CONCLUSION http://www.microsoft.com/online/business-productivity.mspxhttp://www.accenture.com/Global/Technology/Infrastructure_Solutions/Workplace_Technology/default.htmhttp://www.accenture.com/Global/Technology/Infrastructure_Solutions/Workplace_Technology/default.htmhttp://www.thecloudadvantage.com/