Published on Nov 1, 2012
When a non-profit private university looked into so-called "free," cloud-based e-mail solutions as alternatives to Novell® GroupWise®, the spreadsheet analysis was surprising. After doing the math, GroupWise came out on top in several categories.
As Director of Information Technology for Millikin University, Pat Pettit is always looking for cost-efficient ways to improve IT services. When she installed Novell GroupWise in 1996, it was because of the innovative features it included (for no additional cost), plus its low administrative burden and high scalability—ideal for a university environment.
That's why, 16 years ago, Millikin became one of the first universities to offer e-mail as a standard application to everyone—faculty, staff and even students. Today, Millikin University offers an "e-mail address for life" at no cost to current students and alumni.
Recently, Pettit looked into the free, cloudbased e-mail solutions being offered to higher education by Google and Microsoft. She was already considering an upgrade to the university's GroupWise 8 system.
"We discovered that, over five years, it would've cost us US$35,000 to switch to a 'free' solution," she says. "That doesn't include the costs for the business processes we'd have
to rewrite, end-user training costs, and consulting fees for the migration."
Instead of heading down a costly migration path, Millikin University upgraded to GroupWise 2012 over the summer break, completing the process in four weeks. "We could've done it faster, but we made a strategic decision to do it more slowly to make sure we had no problems," Pettit explains. "The beauty of GroupWise is that we could
still be communicating during the upgrade process, because GroupWise 2012 worked
with the GroupWise 8 client."
Instead of heading down a costly migration path, Millikin University upgraded to
GroupWise 2012 over the summer break,
completing the process in four weeks. "We
could've done it faster, but we made a strategic decision to do it more slowly to make
sure we had no problems," Pettit explains.
"The beauty of GroupWise is that we could
still be communicating during the upgrade
process, because GroupWise 2012 worked
with the GroupWise 8 client."
Besides cost savings, another benefit of the
upgrade is productivity. "The faculty and staff
are happy to keep their GroupWise, and the
IT department is happy we didn't have to
write workarounds," she says. "GroupWise
is ingrained in our processes and the way
we do business. We didn't want to fracture
The university also uses Novell Open Enterprise Server for its GroupWise servers, Novell
Cluster Services for high availability, and NetIQ®
Identity Manager to provision new users with
GroupWise and Novell Data Synchronizer.
"We did a survey of incoming freshman and
found that more than half want to do their
e-mail and calendars on smartphones or
tablets, so Data Synchronizer is a must,"
What started as an IT director's look at free
e-mail options ended in an upgrade that now
saves her department time and money, and
keeps her end users productive. Pettit's
"It pays to do the math. 'Free' isn't necessarily free when you take into account all of the
To find out even more info on Millikin University's to stick with Novell GroupWise please look here: http://www.novell.com/docrep/2012/09/...
Standard YouTube License