The main advantage of having Microsoft Office 365 is that people are not losing time—and that is invaluable.
Thomas Muth, Vice President of Information Technology, Eurowings GmbH
In 1993, two of Germany’s largest regional airlines merged to form Eurowings GmbH. Today, operating in partnership with four airlines in the Lufthansa regional cooperation, Eurowings transports 9,000 passengers
across Europe each day.
Secure and reliable communications had always been a top priority for the business, which is why Eurowings IT department vigilantly sought the best ways to support its staff of roughly 900 employees. Taking its
business to the cloud seemed a natural evolution for the airline, but the company wasn’t convinced to make the switch until it discovered a secure and stable solution that it deemed best for its business: Microsoft Office 365.
With an aging on-premises email server, Eurowings knew it needed to invest in a new solution. The question was whether it should upgrade its on-site infrastructure or instead turn to the cloud. The company investigated a few options, but needed to feel absolutely
confident that it could trust in the vendor that would ultimately host its data.
“Security was definitely a primary concern for us in terms of migrating to the cloud,” says Thomas Muth, the company’s vice president of Information Technology. “This move would mean contracting our trust to a company, so we had to make sure we made the
right choice for our business.”
||The migration to Office 365 was astonishing. Like a plane lifting off, all of the hard work that went into making this work seems incredibly seamless. I am proud to be able to provide this secure and easy-to-use solution to our employees.
| Thomas Muth
Vice President of Information Technology
One of the biggest challenges Eurowings had been facing with its on-premises server was instability. Between email bounce backs and mobile workers losing remote connections to the company’s server, frustration among employees—and IT staff—began escalating.
“For our mobile workers, it was time consuming to try to get web access to email, contacts, or files,” says Muth. “They often had to log in three or four times because of connection breakdowns. Productivity—and morale—was suffering as a result.”
Muth adds that sometimes employees would avoid remote access altogether, and because they didn’t want to interrupt him for even quick queries, they often waited several hours or even days to address communication glitches.
“I had to run around looking for and installing updates or security patches for each PC,” Muth explains. “Rather than spending all this time putting out fires and manually upgrading hardware or licenses, I wanted to help my staff by addressing issues proactively.”
After evaluating his options, Muth decided to go with the solution he felt best aligned with Eurowings’ vision and required the least amount of training. He opted for Microsoft Office 365, an online service which unites familiar Microsoft Office applications
with email, calendaring, collaboration, and communication solutions.
“We tried a lot of cloud solutions, but Office 365 was the best for us” says Muth. “We trust in Microsoft in handling our data carefully and making sure it’s securely backed up,” he adds, alluding to the solution’s 99% uptime guarantee and automatic back-up.
Muth also reflects on the seamless transition: “I’ve done a lot of IT projects in my life and they can be very stressful. Making the switch to Office 365 was fun because it was incredibly smooth and employees are so happy with it!” Marc Plassmeier, managing
director of Hill Commerce GmbH, Eurowings' IT partner, adds that “Office 365 was completely integrated within two months. We’re proud of how well—and how quickly—this deployment happened.”
Employees have noted that they can access their email and contact information regardless of where they are—and without worrying about connection breakdowns. “With Microsoft Exchange Online, people can access their Outlook on the go without a hitch,” Muth
The company is also adopting Microsoft Lync Online and finding new ways to collaborate as a result. “Right now we have a handful of employees using Lync Online to instant message each other instead of sending formal emails,” Muth notes. “I think more staff
will see the benefit of this kind of communication and turn to Lync for quickly getting information from colleagues.”
The company is also looking into ways it can tap Microsoft SharePoint Online for exchanging important files. “SharePoint Online is a very interesting tool that helps coordinate teams while enabling permission-based sharing,” says Muth. “We are evaluating
how we can leverage this in our organization, but so far the benefits of Exchange Online alone have surpassed our expectations.”
||I’ve done a lot of IT projects in my life and they can be very stressful. Making the switch to Office 365 was fun because it was incredibly smooth and employees are so happy with it!
| Marc Plassmeier
Hill Commerce, GmbH
Muth points to overall improvements in quality and reliability that Eurowings has gained by making the switch to Office 365. “The main advantage of having Office 365 is that people are not losing time—and that is invaluable,” he says.
Secure and reliable
As Muth aptly states, “The value IT brings to a company is not email, it is making email easy for people to use.” He notes that with Exchange Online, Eurowings’ employees have “secure web access to email, calendars and contacts no matter where we are in
New ways to communicate
Rather than walking to Muth’s office or calling him at his desk only to find he’s unavailable, employees are starting to use Lync Online for short—but important—queries. “Before employees might be hesitant to interrupt me or forget what they wanted to ask
because I wasn’t at my desk,” he says. “With Lync Online, people can see if someone is available and shoot over a quick message. I can see it and reply right away, and that’s a new way of communicating for us.”
Users get 25GB of email storage space with Exchange Online, which Muth didn’t expect. “With Office 365, I have anywhere, anytime access to the last five years’ worth of email files I’ve stored,” he says. “And somehow my 21GB of older messages were compressed
to 3GB when we moved to Exchange Online,” he adds. “I have no idea how Microsoft did this, but it’s fantastic!”
Overall, Muth is impressed with Office 365. “The migration to Office 365 was astonishing,” he says. “Like a plane lifting off, all of the hard work that went into making this work seems incredibly seamless. I am proud to be able to provide this secure and
easy-to-use solution to our employees.”
Microsoft Office 365
Microsoft Office 365 brings together cloud versions of our most trusted communications and collaboration products—Microsoft SharePoint Online, Exchange Online, and Lync Online—with the latest version of our Office desktop suite and companion web applications
for businesses of all sizes.
Office 365 helps save time and money, and it frees up valued resources. Simple to use and easy to administer, it is financially backed by a service level agreement guaranteeing 99 percent reliability. Office 365 features robust security, IT-level phone support,
geo-redundancy, disaster recovery, and the business-class privacy controls and standards that you expect from a world-class service provider.
For more information about Microsoft Office 365, go to:
For more information about Hill Commerce GmbH products and services, visit the website at:
For more information about Eurowings GmbH products and services, visit the website at:
This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY.