Welcome to February. The mass migration of mid-market companies to Cloud Technology is now underway. For over 10 years we've been supporting midsize enterprise IT Departments and their Managed Service Providers to migrate to and adopt Google Cloud Products like G Suite. Here's what we've learned and how we can support you.
- Whether migrating to Office 365 or G Suite we take a quick look at what defines Mid-market IT and the three general principles of modern data migration.
- Google Cloud's Value Proposition for G Suite in the Mid-Market has evolved. Security and familiarity are two factors that have skyrocketed value of the office suite.
- Coolhead Tech provides added value to G Suite deployments with free consulting and strategic account management by Google Certified Engineers.
- To remove cost as a factor in the decision to migrate to G Suite, Google Cloud and licensing partners are offering special incentives for mid-market customers with 100-1000 users.
Cloud migration season is here. It should come as no surprise that companies that have planned to migrate to Cloud productivity tools like Microsoft’s Office 365 and Google Cloud’s G Suite are putting those plans into action this Spring, Summer and Fall. In 2020 records will be set - the mass migration of mid-market companies to Cloud is underway.
It’s been 10 years since we first started migrating businesses to Google Cloud products such as Gmail, Drive, Calendar and Cloud Platform. Some of those early moves were rough - the tools were not stable or fast enough and the collective immaturity of the market made the position of a Cloud Migration Engineer a frustrating one.
Today Cloud Migration tools and partners are abundant, each with their own set of expertise, capabilities, features, pitfalls and costs. While our expertise is in migrating mid-market customers exclusively to and from G Suite these three rules of data migration apply to the switch to any cloud platform.
How do you Define Mid-Market or Mid-size enterprises?
First up is how we define the Mid-Market and the customer we work best with. Gartner defines midsize enterprise (MSE) as those organizations that have between $50 million and $1 billion in annual revenues and/or 100 to 1000 employees. We concur and understand the needs of mid-market IT departments better than anyone.
Our Mid-Market IT Department Understanding:
- Low tolerance for risk. A lot of mid-size companies we work with are family owned. Owners have a large portion of their lives and wealth invested in the company. IT Departments have more to lose than startups and enterprises.
- There are high barriers to collaboration. With multiple locations, whether offices, retail or hospitality it’s difficult to get teams together because of everyone’s regular activities. Early video conferencing and unified communications tools were costly or too complicated.
- It’s tough to retain and develop specialized talent. Mid-market IT departments are incredibly busy whether supporting existing users and systems or building out new locations - it’s tougher than ever to compete with enterprise salaries and existing staff are time-constrained.
The bottom line for mid-market IT directors is that they are looking for a clear value proposition from Cloud Partners and MSPs that includes improved security, is affordable and is straightforward and intuitive for users and admins alike. Now onto the three rules of Cloud migration.
The Three Rules of Cloud Migration
Most folks know me and Coolhead Tech as Austin’s Local Google Cloud Consultant. While it’s true, our expertise and heart are in Google Cloud, we play well with others. In the 1990’s I was one of those 'Exchange Server Goto Guys' and quite the Outlook addict. It was Google’s vision for G Suite and their Cloud First strategy that I fell in love with.
We enjoy working with IT Professionals, whether mid-market or part of the IT Channel. In fact, in most cases, we work very well with Managed Services Providers to complement their Microsoft expertise to provide the best of both worlds to migration customers.
2020 is a turning point for digital transformation and mid-size enterprises understand the value and need to modernize or risk being left behind and failing. Follow these three rules for Cloud migration to any platform to succeed.
Migration Rule #1: Switching Should be Simple
You shouldn’t need to configure hundreds of servers to do a data migration. Back in the day a migration engineer would need to create and stage one instance per 20 users. If Google’s free migration software crashed, the server rebooted or something else happened it would mean significant loss of time.
Today, we use tools like BitTitan’s MigrationWiz which is in itself a SaaS app with built-in redundancy and scalability. Configure endpoints, add users, mitigate exceptions and migrate. From a technical standpoint configuration takes an experienced engineer less than an hour for initial setup and configuration. Same day migrations to G Suite are a reality with migration tools like this.
Migration Rule #2: Switching Should be Affordable
Long gone are quotes of $50-$100 per user for migration services including ‘change management and training.’ Users today are more familiar with Google's Apps, understand change and most only need light touch communications to make the initial switch from legacy products to G Suite.
Today, Google Cloud and Partners provide guidance, plans and templates for mid-market companies migrating to G Suite. The modern cloud migration plans allow for meaningful in house leadership in change management and communications for a migration to G Suite. Special use cases and one-off training provides targeted support as needed.
Migration Rule #3: Switching should be Transformational
Why are you switching the company to G Suite? Thinking your company will win the favor of Google’s search algorithms by Going Google was naive of some of the early mid-market companies migrating to G Suite.
Instead, consider the possibilities of how modern apps and services can truly transform your own department and company. Low hanging fruit: Low effort, juicy impact - even if it's just for the added online security - A secure digital workplace is the foundation of innovation and growth.
For many folks these days, it’s Google Drive and Meetings/Hangouts that are easy wins to modernize the workforce. Today, GMail is the stable center of communications for many companies, designed for today’s email volume vs. other business email clients. The whole suite of apps is certainly more secure than anything out there and Security can be transformational.
Now, let's look at migration to G Suite specifically and where Google's value proposition to mid-market companies is today and how it's grown over the years.
The Evolution of Google Cloud’s Mid-Market Value Proposition
Five years ago Google made their first mid-market push with a simple value proposition of cost reduction, ease of administration and Cloud Security.
The Cost of G Suite vs What Mid-Market Companies Get
G Suite has everything midsize enterprises need to succeed in one cost effective package. Even at list price, G Suite offers significant value for mid-market companies and IT Departments.
Core Apps and Features included in G Suite Business (List price: $12/Month)
G Suite comes in 3 flavors, Basic at $6 per month, Business at $12 and G Suite enterprise for $25 per month. The list of features below is for G Suite Business, the most popular choice for mid-market companies to adopt. If you have over 350 users you can choose a mix of G Suite licenses.
- Gmail - Most popular Email client able to handle today’s business needs.
- Hangouts Chat - Slack competitor
- Hangouts Meet - Easy to use screenshare/video and conferencing system
- Google Voice (extra cost) - simple cloud pbx with SMS messaging
- Google Drive - no data caps and supports hundreds of file formats
- Docs, Sheets and Slides - Super Collaborative Office Apps
Admin Control and Governance
- G Suite Admin Console - intuitive and powerful control, logging, routing and management
- Vault - ediscovery and retention enforcer with Google’s search power
- MDM - Simple and advanced mobile device management for BYOD and Company Owned assets
Google Cloud has additionally gained a large eco-system of SaaS integrations, Apps and add-ons for G Suite to extend and accommodate a variety of mid-market needs. At the foundation of all of Google Cloud’s products is security, the second pillar of the mid-market value proposition presented by Google Cloud.
Cloud Security and Compliance That’s Easy to Adopt and Maintain
I am convinced that Google has the best Cloud security tools available to mid-market companies, out of the box. Google and Silicon Valley’s own culture of paranoia and ‘eat your own dog food’ mantra ensured a platform that is secure, private and compliant. While some IT Directors agree that Google ‘knows everything’ it is the default setting in a millenial mindset that shares everything. G Suite's Extended privacy and advanced protection for users and companies is only a couple of clicks away.
As one of the largest Global enterprises in the world, Google continues to use their own apps, products and features to scale their business in a cost effective and secure way. Today in 2020, G Suite is used by a wide array of customer sizes and segments.
Consider that a majority of presidential candidates, celebrities and high profile users choose G Suite and specialists for securely and privately scaling their initiatives, success and reach.
As an IT Director or Communications Manager there could be nothing you should fear more than a breach of one of your users or customer data. Such breaches, these days, are widely disseminated and can crush a mid-market company’s growth and future in an instant.
Google’s implementation of Cloud security is on point for Admins and Users. With a simple and robust multi-factor authentication scheme and contextual login rules Admins can implement, enforce and ensure security and compliance without significant pain. Users appreciate the lack of complexity on their part - it’s security that just works without hassle.
G Suite’s Intuitive and Familiar Design Makes Growth Scalable
The most common feedback I get from mid-market companies is that their migration to G Suite went “much better than I thought it would.”
There’s always a hesitation in IT to change anything. I get it, as mentioned, we IT decision makers have a low tolerance of risk - it’s a good trait in this business.
Google’s Consumer and Education strategies and success in the early days was one of the keys to making the switch from legacy tools seamless. Embrace what your users use and not only is the migration easy, but so is life after Outlook. It’s a new normal - The Cloud has grown up and more adults now have more familiarity and expertise in using the consumer version of G Suite’s core apps than they do Microsoft’s.
Migrations to G Suite are usually seen as ‘IT Hero’ moments for the departments I work with. Today’s modern office worker often complains about having better technology at home than at work - it’s been this way since the mid-1990s - your users will be relieved and more efficient on tools they know and love.
Coolhead Tech’s Continued Support for Mid-Market Companies Migrating to G Suite
Why are we offering all of these benefits for your business? I’ve worked mid-market IT all my life. I understand the struggle and enjoy working and supporting your efforts. This is professional courtesy services for G Suite - It’s easy for us, it’s what we do and specialize in all day and night long. Our professional services here are offered, at no charge, to IT professionals and Channel Partners Only. We support end users, at a cost through additional engagements.
Terms to qualify for this mid-market offer are fairly straight-forward. As discussed, we define mid-market as 100-1000 users, per Gartner. To receive the free MigrationWiz licenses you must be a ‘New’ customer to Google, which means less than 5% of your users actively on G Suite.
What's Included in the Mid-Market Migration Madness Deal?
- A Statement of Work that provides Setup, Migration and Training
- Free BitTitan MigrationWiz software and Assistance to Migrate to G Suite
- Coolhead Tech’s Proven Security Planning, Strategy and Training for G Suite
- Free Lifetime Direct Access to Tier 2 Google Certified Engineers
- Our Best Pricing and Licensing Management Guarantee for G Suite
A Tight Statement of Work that Provides Setup, Migration and Training
The objective of our statement of Work for mid-market migrations is to ensure quality delivery of the G Suite deployment.
The main objectives of Our G Suite Migration S.O.W. for The Mid-market are:
- To provide an overall responsibility breakdown of the project
- To cover the schedule, activities, risks and issues associated with the project
- To describe the partner and customer resources needed to implement the project
Post-Deployment Services for G Suite Clients (Customer Success Services) :
Google consistently sees that Customers who utilize CSS have higher product adoption rates and have more satisfied end users. Our G Suite Migration SOW describes post-implementation services and is based on customer requirements.
Free BitTitan MigrationWiz Software and Assistance to Migrate to G Suite
Having migrated tens of thousands of users to G Suite over the years we’ve tried and used a variety of tools to migrate data to G Suite. In our experience MigrationWiz is the most widely capable solution for quickly, securely and easily move data from a variety of source servers.
In a recent profile of the top five migration tools for G Suite we pointed to MigrationWiz’ collaborative, 100% SaaS solution with a number of security and privacy certifications under its belt.
The offer includes MigrationWiz for Mail, Contacts and Calendars. MigrationWiz Bundle which supports the additional migration of OneDrive, Dropbox and other file servers is available for just $5 per user.
A Proven Security Plan, Strategy and Training for G Suite
Google Cloud provides security and protection beyond expectation but a move to cloud means some fundamental corporate policy alignments. We help ensure mid-market deployments of G Suite are tight without restricting company needs for collaboration, growth and innovation
The process includes policy and retention reviews, contextual access, sharing policies, Privacy from Google, incident response as well as phishing and dark web monitoring for G Suite.
Direct Access to Tier 2 Google Certified Engineers
Our commitment to mid-market IT departments is clear and direct. As long as you are a licensing customer of one of our Google Cloud Partners, our mid-market customers enjoy free direct access to a Google Cloud Certified Professional.
Access to additional SaaSOps Engineers is an request away. Coolhead Tech works with a wide range of Google and IT Channel Certified Engineers and can quickly connect customers to specialists around the world. Salesforce, ServiceNow, Hubspot, RingCentral and other certified SaaSOps Engineers are easily accessible to our Google Cloud customers.
Our Best Pricing and Licensing Management for G Suite
In 2019, our main licensing partner, Apps Admin Company, released their own, innovative, licensing manager for G Suite Administrators. The app is built on Google Cloud Platform and Stripe to provide real time licenses and pricing for G Suite.
License creep is a serious concern when moving to Cloud. The License Manager provides significant savings to mid-market companies by allowing Administrators to maintain former employee accounts at 1/3 the cost of a G Suite Business License. Internal studies show Mid-market customers save a minimum of 8.33% using the real-time SaaS licensing system.
Start Rocking the G Suite with Coolhead Tech
If you’e an IT leader or department member that wants a G Suite deployment that rocks, you’ve found the right partner. We’re a company that was born and raised in Austin, Texas that values independence and appreciates the work of IT departments in all industries. Use the form below to contact us on this exclusive offer to deploy G Suite for your organization.
Request More Information on the Mid-Market Migration Offer