2 page Case Study
Posted: 4/14/2011
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Novelis Global Aluminum Leader Adopts Exchange Online over Other Messaging Solutions

To improve employee productivity and expand knowledge sharing, Novelis wanted to upgrade its messaging environment and implement an organizationwide collaboration initiative. After evaluating several leading cloud-based solutions, Novelis adopted Microsoft Exchange Online, Office Communications Online, and Office Live Meeting. Now employees can collaborate more efficiently, and Novelis has reduced its messaging costs by up to 25 percent.

Business Needs
Novelis produces flat-rolled aluminum sheet and foil for the beverage, automotive, transportation, consumer electronics, packaging, and construction industries, serving major customers across the globe. A world leader in aluminum recycling, Novelis recycles 40 billion used beverage cans every year. With more than 11,000 employees and operations in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia, Novelis generated U.S.$8.7 billion in revenue during its 2010 fiscal year.

To help maintain its industry leadership, Novelis wanted to increase collaboration and communication among its widely distributed workforce, which was using an email and messaging solution provided by an outside hosting service to connect with each other and with customers. At the same time, Novelis employees used Microsoft Office 2003 productivity software to manage and produce documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and other business material.

Unfortunately, computer users and administrators at Novelis often found it difficult to make its email environment interoperate efficiently with the rest of the company’s IT infrastructure, which sometimes blocked easy collaboration. “Our employees had to constantly switch between user interfaces, and we wanted to provide them with a more seamless way to work with the tools they need the most,” says Pietro Quadrelli, Manager of Global Messaging and Collaboration at Novelis.

The situation increased IT costs because IT personnel spent a lot of time solving problems and maintaining two separate network directories. Novelis began evaluating how to build a messaging environment that would enable better collaboration and communication and help reduce IT costs. “We wanted to build an environment for global collaboration so that people across the company could share best practices and unify processes,” says Quadrelli. “And we needed the right tools to support that.”

Novelis did not want to spend money on new infrastructure. Instead, the company wanted to manage its email environment by using cloud technology—computing resources hosted off-premises and provided as online services. The company evaluated several on-premises, hosted, and leading cloud-based messaging solutions, including Microsoft Exchange Online, a component of the Microsoft Business Productivity Online Standard Suite, a collection of messaging and collaboration services offered through Microsoft Online Services.

* By choosing Microsoft Online Services, we got the proven technology in Exchange Online, and we enhanced our collaboration capabilities with Office Communications Online and Office Live Meeting. *

Pietro Quadrelli
Manager of Global Messaging and Collaboration, Novelis

Novelis decided to manage its email environment by using Exchange Online because Business Productivity Online Standard Suite combines an enterprise-level messaging environment with a complete set of collaboration services. In 2010—working with the Migration SWAT Team at Bennett Adelson, a member of the Microsoft Partner Network—Novelis adopted Exchange Online to manage email for all 8,000 computer users in the organization. About 2,600 Novelis employees also use Microsoft Office Communications Online for instant messaging and Microsoft Office Live Meeting for web conferencing, other components in the Business Productivity Online Standard Suite.

“By choosing Microsoft Online Services, we got the proven technology in Exchange Online, and we enhanced our collaboration capabilities with Office Communications Online and Office Live Meeting,” says Quadrelli.

Concurrently, the company deployed Microsoft Office Professional 2007 throughout the organization. Quadrelli says that another factor in choosing Microsoft Online Services was its seamless interoperability with Office Professional 2007. “We were changing our email interface and introducing new tools,” he says. “I think that if we had chosen a different technology, the transformation would have been more difficult.”

By using Microsoft Online Services to deliver an integrated suite of messaging and collaboration solutions, Novelis has reduced its operating and management expenses and made it easier for employees to collaborate effectively.

Reduced expenses. Novelis pays for the services it uses on a month-to-month basis, and the company is spending far less than it did for its previous technology. Because Exchange Online operates seamlessly with the company’s other productivity solutions, Novelis has reduced the burden on IT staff. Sanjeev Goel, Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at Novelis, estimates that the company has reduced the cost of its messaging environment by 25 percent.

Novelis employees were already familiar with Microsoft technologies, so the company was able to adopt the new messaging environment with lower training expenses than it might have had with another solution. “We didn’t have to invest a lot in user training,” says Quadrelli. “We just used the company intranet to promote the excellent web training sessions provided by Microsoft.”

Real-time collaboration. By combining more-efficient email service with instant messaging and web conferencing capabilities, Novelis makes it easier for employees to communicate and collaborate effectively. “From my desk in Atlanta, I can use Office Communications Online to communicate with the IT director in Europe every morning, by text, voice, or even video,” says Hervé Legrand, Vice President of global IT applications at Novelis. “Now we can tap expertise that might have been out of reach before, get answers in real time, and accelerate decision cycles.”

Business transformation. By using Microsoft Online Services, Novelis employees can now collaborate more effectively, and the company can increase efficiencies, reduce operational costs, and ultimately enhance sales and revenue.

“We have not only reduced costs. We have optimized the way we are working across all businesses,” says Legrand. “By reducing our footprint and enhancing collaboration, we’ve built a foundation for future growth.”

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Solution Overview

Organization Size: 11000 employees

Organization Profile

With headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, and operations in 11 countries, Novelis is the world's largest producer of rolled aluminum.

Software and Services
  • Microsoft Business Productivity Online Standard Suite
  • Exchange Online
  • Microsoft Office Live Meeting
  • Microsoft Office Communications Online

Vertical Industries
Manufacturing & Resources

United States

Business Need
Business Productivity