Cablemás, a telecommunications company in Mexico, wanted to provide its 2,500 field employees with email access to help increase their interaction with the company’s central office and foster improved customer service. The company used Microsoft
Exchange Server 2007 for messaging for employees at its central office and opted to extend email to its customer service, sales, and on-site technical service employees in the field through the use of the Microsoft Exchange Online cloud service. Cablemás found
the solution easy to implement with the help of UNIKA, a Microsoft Partner. The company has more than doubled the number of employees who have email without having to add to its IT staff or make a significant up-front investment in IT infrastructure. Now Cablemás
can more effectively reach out to all of its employees to give them the information that they need to improve service to customers.
Cablemás, a telecommunications leader in Mexico, aims to offer high-quality communications and entertainment solutions, competitive prices, and superior customer service. The company wants to make cable television, broadband Internet, and digital telephony
service available to everyone in Mexico.
Remaining at the forefront of the telecommunications landscape in Mexico usually means keeping customers happy, which often can only be achieved when employees have the tools that they need to do their jobs effectively. Cablemás sought to improve communications
with its customer service, sales, and on-site technical service employees who work with customers in the field so that those field employees could have faster access to up-to-date corporate information. “Although all the employees in our central office were
on our corporate messaging system, we had no easy way to share marketing plans and other key information with our 2,500 employees in the field,” says Jorge Gonzalez Ortega, IT Operations and Support Manager at Cablemás. “Company news such as sales quotas and
results, service offering changes, and internal communications from our human resources department did not reach field employees in a timely manner. Often, the information was incomplete or received too late to be useful. Our field employees felt disconnected
from the decisions that were made in our central office.”
||As a result of using Exchange Online, employees are enjoying enhanced productivity and improved access to information. The company is delivering faster, higher-quality service to its customers.
|Jorge Gonzalez Ortega
IT Operations and Support Manager, Cablemás
Employees at the central office used Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, an on-premises messaging solution, but field employees would often use their own personal email aliases for communication. “We had no official email system for employees in the field. As a
result, the lack of standardized email communication decreased their productivity because it was so difficult to exchange information with their managers and to be informed about corporate direction,” says Ortega. Cablemás understood clearly that it needed
to extend messaging capabilities to employees in the field.
In 2011, Cablemás decided to take action. At first, the company considered expanding its Exchange Server 2007 environment, but storage limitations and the difficulty of managing additional infrastructure were daunting challenges. “We turned to Microsoft
for advice, which is when we learned that we were a good candidate to adopt the kiosk version of Microsoft Exchange Online to extend our email environment to a cloud service,” says Ortega. Because the kiosk version of Exchange Online is designed for “deskless”
workers, it was a good fit for the field employees at Cablemás.
The company liked the idea of using a hybrid environment made up of its existing servers combined with cloud services. Before it came to a final decision, Cablemás explored cloud services from other vendors, such as Google. “We determined that Exchange Online
would be a better fit for us because we have an established relationship with Microsoft, and we trust Microsoft and its products and services,” says Ortega. “We also knew that the Microsoft solution would be easier for employees to use and for our IT staff
to manage because everyone was familiar with Microsoft technologies.”
For help with the deployment, Cablemás worked with UNIKA, a member of the Microsoft Partner Network with Gold competencies. “UNIKA knew the process well, which made for a fast and easy deployment,” says Ortega.
Cablemás manages its Exchange Online environment using the Administration console, and it uses a software connector to link its on-premises Exchange Server 2007 system with its Exchange Online service. The company also takes advantage of the Windows PowerShell
command-line interface to get reports about ongoing email, calendar, contacts, and task synchronization activity. To assign custom roles within Exchange Online, Cablemás uses role-based access control (RBAC) so that some administrative areas, including user
management and password resets, can be delegated to IT staff members who do not have to be designated email administrators.
Cablemás already used Microsoft Forefront Protection for Exchange Server to help protect its Exchange Server 2007 environment. Now it also uses Microsoft Forefront Online Protection for Exchange. “It was so straightforward to configure Forefront for Exchange
Online because we simply replicated the customization that we had for our on-premises system,” says Ortega.
As of February 2012, the company’s 2,500 field employees all use Exchange Online. Cablemás will consider moving all its employees to the cloud service in 2013, when it has to make a decision about upgrading its Exchange Server 2007 infrastructure. Cablemás
also anticipates adopting the kiosk version of Microsoft SharePoint Online in the future.
||All they need is an Internet connection, and our field employees have access to Exchange Online and everything that they need.
|Jorge Gonzalez Ortega
IT Operations and Support Manager, Cablemás
Now that Cablemás uses Exchange Online to give email communication to all its field employees, it is able to inform all employees of corporate decisions, educate them about marketing strategies, and give them tools to serve customers more quickly. “Setting
up and using Exchange Online is so easy,” says Ortega. “We were able to satisfy a business need to communicate with all our employees, regardless of their location, without burdening our IT staff.”
Improved Communications and Customer Service
Now that they can more easily communicate with their colleagues, employees in the field have shown increased productivity. “We have not conducted a formal study on our email environment, but we know that a lot of field employees need to spend less time
getting information from or sending information to their supervisors,” says Ortega. “Our sales supervisors can now send email updates about product features and pricing, which means that our sales representatives have more information to support them throughout
the sales process. Plus, field employees have a greater sense of belonging because they and their colleagues at our central office can communicate directly.”
Before the company adopted Exchange Online, field employees found it difficult to serve customers in a timely manner because they often had to find other employees to ask for the information they needed to answer customers’ questions. “Today, customer-facing
employees not only have available a faster, more efficient means of reaching out to each other but often already have the answers they need that keep them up to date,” says Ortega. “As a result of using Exchange Online, employees are enjoying enhanced productivity
and improved access to information. The company is delivering faster, higher-quality service to its customers because our field employees are able to make better decisions.”
Increased Employee Flexibility
In the past, Cablemás employees were limited to the Exchange Server 2007 features that the company’s IT staff had the expertise to support, but, by using Exchange Online, the company now can offer advanced features to its field employees. “Employees
can use all the functionality that is available in Exchange Online because Microsoft manages it for us,” says Ortega.
For example, field employees can send messages with attachments that are up to 25 megabytes in size and use single sign-on access to get to their email and other information without having to use a virtual private network (VPN) connection. “All they need
is an Internet connection and our field employees have access to Exchange Online and everything that they need,” says Ortega. Field employees appreciate the large mailbox sizes, which are actually larger than those of employees in the central office. The company
also uses the archiving capabilities in Exchange Online to store historical email messages, which means that field employees can see and access older content.
Reduced Up-Front Investment
Cablemás subscribes to Exchange Online at a fixed monthly rate, so it did not need to make a significant financial investment in hardware, even though it more than doubled the number of employees who have access to corporate email. “Even though we now
are serving 2,500 more employees, we did not have to take time or invest up to MXN$320,594 [US$25,000] in server and storage costs to expand our infrastructure,” says Ortega. “We also avoided MXN$128,240 [US$10,000] in consulting and services fees.”
The company also has saved in other ways through its ability to communicate to field employees using email. For example, Cablemás is able to be more environmentally responsible through using less paper. The company’s human resources department no longer
has to send posters that contain important internal communications to field offices. “Using email instead of generating posters represents about MXN$30,000 [US$2,355] in savings a year,” says Ortega.
Easy IT Management
Because Microsoft manages the majority of the administrative tasks for Exchange Online, Cablemás did not need to add IT staff to manage all the new email users. “It would have taken 40 hours of additional staff time per week with a traditional solution,
but I’m supporting both our on-premises and online messaging environments with the same staff, which is pretty impressive,” says Ortega. ”Our IT staff can easily manage the company’s hybrid environment because we do not need to worry about most administrative
aspects of Exchange Online. We create users, delete users, and sometimes reset passwords—and that’s it. The Administration console is the only tool that we need for managing Exchange Online. Our IT staff can focus on more important tasks, rather than spending
a lot of time keeping the environment working properly.”
Excellent Reliability, Security, and Support
Cablemás appreciates the level of reliability that it has experienced using Exchange Online. “We receive an excellent level of service from Microsoft. It is so helpful not to have to worry about maintenance, software updates, upgrades, and so on,” says
Ortega. “We trust Microsoft to keep our email service up and running, and we have not been disappointed.” In addition, Cablemás has subscribed to Microsoft Services Premier Support, and the company has been pleased with the support that Microsoft delivers.
Cablemás has found that by combining Exchange Online and Forefront Online Protection for Exchange, it has the ability to safeguard against both malware and viruses, and it also has access to useful e-discovery, compliance, and searchable archiving capabilities.
“I’m happy with the security that Exchange Online delivers,” says Ortega.
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
For more information about Microsoft products and services, call the Microsoft Sales Information Center at (800) 426-9400. In Canada, call the Microsoft Canada Information Centre at (877) 568-2495. Customers in the United States and Canada who are deaf or hard-of-hearing
can reach Microsoft text telephone (TTY/TDD) services at (800) 892-5234. Outside the 50 United States and Canada, please contact your local Microsoft subsidiary. To access information using the World Wide Web, go to:
For more information about UNIKA products and services, call (55) 5365-2340 or visit the website at:
For more information about Cablemás products and services, call (55) 4121-8480 or visit the website at: