Break-Up With Your Old-School Archive
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Youi is a fast-growing general insurance business serving the Australian and New Zealand markets. It is based on the Sunshine Coast and employs around 1700 people. Since launching in Australia in 2008, the firm has quickly secured a 5% market share in the Motor and Home insurance arena thanks to its commitment to product and service innovation, which in turn supports a customer satisfaction rate of 85%.
In early 2014, Youi had ambitious plans in place to accelerate its growth by offering consumers across Australia and New Zealand a customer experience that would set it apart from the competition. It wanted to offer more flexible, more efficient communication with customers; communications in which email would play a crucial part.
However, embedding email within Youi’s core business processes and customer communication was not without risk. Ricky Balea, Youi’s Infrastructure Manager said: “Before the implementation of Mimecast, our email infrastructure consisted of MS Exchange and a point solution.”
As a result, Youi enquire about functionality that would support its business critical email and comply with the provisions of the Electronic Communications Act.
In particular, email archiving was time consuming and inefficient, based on inbox size limits and user-managed archiving to PSTs. Ricky explained that this was inefficient from both a user and an IT department point of view: “It was troubling for us to retrieve deleted email from offsite tape backups.”
This fragmented archiving was also a compliance risk. Email retention was difficult to manage, while eDiscovery and audit requirements were time consuming to support. With all this in mind, Ricky had already concluded that an Exchange Server upgrade was an absolute necessity, but quickly came to realise that Youi would need to build on Exchange’s core capabilities.
Initially, Ricky and his team focused on upgrading to Exchange Server 2013 with a view to squeeze additional functionality from existing infrastructure – a call from colleagues based in Youi’s South African business added Mimecast to the equation.
Ricky said: “At first, we were focused on trying to get more functionality from our existing infrastructure. But then our colleagues in South Africa started talking about the benefits of Mimecast and it quickly started to look like an obvious choice.”
After doing his own research, Ricky was ready to take a closer look at Mimecast Unified Email Management (UEM): “Mimecast is very cost effective. It made our email secure – in the sense that we need not worry about archiving, we need not worry about DR. On top of that, we were attracted to the malware and spam protection, as opposed to using our own solution. That made transitioning to Mimecast a no-brainer.”
A matter of weeks later, with proof of concept completed, Youi made the move to Mimecast UEM. Ricky commented on a painless transition: “The transition from routing outbound mail directly through Mimecast, rather than directly through the internet was fairly quick – within a couple of weeks. Then it was another couple of weeks. Then it was another couple of weeks to compete the same process for inbound email.”
Mimecast UEM, coupled with Exchange Server 2013, has given Youi the robust, secure and compliant email systems it needed to turn customer communication into a competitive edge.
Ricky said: “Mimecast looks a better solution all round. Better spam and content filtering, better management, the ease of use, the intuitive ease of use that made it possible to extend management of email back to the user. That’s something that you can’t really do on Exchange – it doesn’t have that kind of flexibility.”
End users are freed from the task of archiving to PSTs. Instead, email is automatically retained in the Mimecast Cloud Archive. This also cuts the support burden on Ricky’s team, for instance, the time spent helping users to find old emails: “These days we can simply tell users to ‘click on this link and retrieve it yourself from the Mimecast portal. It’s things like that which make administration a lot less cumbersome for us. We are concentrated on more strategic, less mundane types of activity.
The Mimecast Cloud Archive has proven its worth from a compliance perspective too: “eDiscovery auditing is a real benefit. We often have people investigating email communications, it is a security concern if to grant access through MS Exchange. By using Mimecast we can see the audit logs, there is a clear audit trail that we can reference.”
But the benefits of Youi’s move to Mimecast have not been limited to archiving. Youi now gets best of breed email security, which includes Targeted Threat Protection to guard against attacks like spear-phishing, as well as policy-driven content examination tools to prevent damaging data leaks via email: “Mimecast is now taking care of spam filtering and email security, not us, and DLP is now fully automated. We have better control of confidential information – it’s ringfenced to key people and taken care of by key people, and not IT any longer.”
Overall, Mimecast UEM has provided Ricky and his team with a single, integrated solution to a range of email infrastructure challenges. He concluded: “Overall, it was an all in one box solution that Mimecast could give us. It goes the extra mile compared to other cloud email services. It does the security, the archiving, it does the compliance leg work and more - but all in one solution.”
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