From email archive to file archive to interactive archive

At Mimecast we've been developing cloud-based technology for many years. I've been with the company for close to 8 years and in that time we've always had a razor sharp focus.

That focus has always been on working where we deliver the most immediate value and where customers can see the most apparent benefits.

At Mimecast this focus has been part of our DNA through our email-centric ethos.

We've been delivering world class email security, integrated email continuity and lightning fast email archiving since we first opened our doors.

Today that’s all changed.

Back in the first days of Mimecast, we started thinking about problems that faced business management and one of the key things we identified was that file sizes continue to grow and grow…as so does the available space in an entry level hard drive.But while file sizes grew, it meant that business management had to start making decisions about what to do with those files and that was where we looked at what we were doing then and where we wanted to be in the future.

Going back as far as 2008 when we first started talking publicly about the “Information Bank” as a concept, we had already put plans in place to ensure our development path prepared our platform to accept more than email data.

During the last two years, our CTO, Neil Murray, changed the manner in which we deliver completed software to our production systems and we converted to a continuous delivery model and changed our support and engineering structures to conform to a DevOps structure, making sure that every person involved in the chain of delivery had a vested interest in ensuring that nothing would ever detrimentally effect the production service.

All of these changes had to be put into place to allow us to add new features and functions while making sure that existing customer’s experience remained sacrosanct. This is no trivial task for a company with thousands of customers spread across disparate time zones who have all been promised 100% uptime! Working within Mimecast during that time, I've been amazed at how challenging it is to deliver enterprise quality software as a service, making sure that no customers experience outages, that everything is checked, rechecked and then checked again.

Well, after years of blood sweat and tears, the first publicly facing change to our platform has begun to show the inexorable turn of our business to head towards the goal of Information Banking. This is the introduction of Mimecast File Archive, a service that allows customers to archive more than their email with us.

We have started this service out with a few of the major integration points that our existing customer base has been asking us to explore, namely home directories, network shares, SharePoint libraries, Dropbox and Box.

While there are a plethora of “online archives” out there today, what we know is that they are all being designed to be traditional archives, they are not being designed with a modern value based archive as the poster child for a successful service.

Because storing data is a costly exercise, almost everybody we speak to is looking for ways to derive real business value from their archives and at Mimecast we've got that right with email.

We allow retention policies to be set based on content, we enable notifications to be generated when users submit content that contravenes corporate policy, we even share data that meets specified criteria with nominated parties in the organization, all the while making sure the user is able to self-service as much as is possible.

Mimecast is carrying these same tenets of interactive archiving across to our file archiving product, making sure that business management can truly get a handle on what types of data are being stored in their environments, generating notifications to risk officers when commercially sensitive content is found traversing public cloud services like Dropbox and Box and making sure that users are able to work in the way that is most efficient for them.

A truly exciting day for me, having watched our product grow and develop into the technological marvel it is today, servicing almost 7,000 customers and more than one and a half million users around the world.

Go check our press release about the product here and the product page here.