Crane and Staples Solicitors is are a legal firm based in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire. The company specialises in both personal and corporate law. They are one of Welwyn Garden City’s most established firms, having worked with local communities for over 80 years.
With 55 users, the company was finding it difficult to work effectively as they were still using Office 2010. In addition, their server was reaching an age where it needed to be replaced.
The firm also noted that many clients and staff members were seeking better collaboration facilities. As Microsoft officially retired Office 2010, the company knew that it was the right time to invest in their business IT systems. They were looking to replace their email server, update their desktop office applications with the latest software, and enable more effective internal collaboration.
We worked closely with Crane and Staples Solicitors to establish their requirements, considering what they need right now and what they may need in the future. We felt that migration to Office 365 would be the most effective solution, so we discussed the advantages and disadvantages and created a detailed proposal that the client could present to the partners for approval.
We recommended that we migrated to Office 365 using a cutover migration. This was where each user’s mailbox was migrated at the same time. We also ensured that each staff member’s computer was updated to the latest version of Office. This approach ensured that the client had increased resilience to their emails, and they would be able to work far more effectively thanks to the updated software systems. Our approach in migrating the client’s emails first means that when their servers are updated, they will still benefit from full email access with no disruption. This will allow them to work much more efficiently, with minimal downtime.
The migration to Office 365 has also enabled the firm to benefit from the use of Microsoft Teams. This software has been especially helpful to allow staff to communicate quickly and efficiently during the lock down period. In the future the firm envisage Teams to be particularly helpful when working on projects such as their Lexcel Accreditation, which requires different individuals to collaborate effectively.
The migration to Office 365 took place over a weekend. This was timed for minimal disruption to the business. As part of the process, two staff members from the client joined us to test the machines. This meant that we could guarantee that when employees turned up to work on a Monday morning, their computer would be updated with the latest technology with full access to emails.
As a result of the migration, each user now has access to the latest version of Office, and staff are actively making the most of Microsoft Teams as a collaborative tool.
An added benefit is that we were able to decommission their existing email server and reuse the resources for their virtual guest servers. Looking ahead to the future, their emails will now be far more resilient to failure which will lead to considerably less downtime. The client can also expect to reduce their financial investment on server resources maintained in-house. Thanks to the migration to Office 365, Crane and Staples can use the other opportunities available to them via the software, leading to more dynamic and flexible working practices.
Thanks to the ease of the software, we are pleased to note that since the migration, the company has had no email issues or reduced downtime.
“Lucid Systems were very thorough when explaining our choices and establishing our requirements. It was particularly important for a team of lawyers, who need to record every minute of their chargeable time, that the system was only unavailable for a short period. Another key requirement was that all the data available in the old system was immediately accessible in the new one when we came in to work on the Monday morning.
The project was completed in the planned timescale, we were convinced that the new systems were appropriate and tested and we were confident throughout that our data was safe.
Office 365 and the Teams component have proved valuable to Crane and Staples, especially during the lockdown. Our lawyers have more options when collaborating with each other and with our clients and contacts. We have also used Teams for socialising and keeping connected with home-workers and furloughed staff.
Lucid explained the problems and opportunities, offered solutions, and delivered the chosen solution in a safe and efficient project.”
Crane and Staples Solicitors