The Ivy Group, Ltd. Moves to Google Apps with MxToolBox; Eliminating Internal Hardware Headaches.

Collaborated by Chad James & Bobby Pearson, Ivy Group IT Administrator

The Ivy Group, Ltd. is a full-service marketing consultancy firm specializing in research, strategy, branding, web design, print, communications, and visual media, servicing customers nationwide since 1989. With teams working out of two offices, reliable email and prompt, responsive communication tools are critical. In October of 2011, after facing a number of problems with server availability and storage problems due to other applications on the server and, for the most part, a lackadaisical approach to data security, they made the decision to transition from an in-house Exchange 2003 SBS environment to Google Apps for Business with the support of MxToolBox, a US-based Google Apps Authorized reseller and Email Systems Integrator.

The Ivy Group came to MxToolBox with outbound delivery problems resulting from a blacklisted server address. As it happens, several employees were already lobbying for the move to Google Apps based on the uptime, mobile support, and universal accessibility and preferred the Gmail interface to that of Outlook or Outlook Web Access. Additionally, with few to no spam filters in place, many users would spend upwards to half an hour a day just sifting through spam. Look what Bobby Pearson, IT Manager at Ivy Group, had to say:

After reviewing the pros & cons about other providers and alternatives including upgrading our existing Exchange Server, we determined that Google Apps was the best choice with MxToolBox providing support. We chose to work with MxToolBox because they run an amazing website tool for DNS diagnostics and blacklist lookups and helped shed light on our email delivery problems when no one else could. When it came time to start the move, MxToolBox helped make the ordering and implementation process fast and efficient and fit within our 1-week rollout time.

The cost of moving to Google Apps presents a tremendous cost-advantage over the support time, potential downtime, and the headaches of managing Exchange internally. As Bobby noted, Terminating the Exchange services has freed up our server’s resources and it no longer freezes or stalls. Almost every employee now uses the Gmail web interface exclusively; they love the mobile accessibility, response time, and searchability and most of us use Google Chat on a daily basis to communicate about our projects. The conversation strings help track previous correspondence, and we no longer have annoying email delays for security purposes.”

Although we each have an area of specialization, we work interdependently as a team on all projects, and Google Apps provides tools for more streamlined communications across our organization without costly infrastructure or training. Moving to Google Apps was definitely the best decision for our business!

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