At the time of our previous case study with Aspire Indiana, they had just migrated their 500 users onto Gmail and were looking forward to their Drive migration & trainings. With David Speicher leading the charge, they had left their legacy systems (Office 2010, Office 2012, Exchange 2007, Lifesize, etc.) behind, and begun a new life on G Suite. Now, post Drive migration, Aspire Indiana employees are adopting a new workstyle.
Google Drive: Changing the way employees think about files
David notes that the trainings for Google Drive were more advanced than those of Gmail; changing the way people think about documents is a bit trickier than changing their email interface. While sharing and live-editing the same file is a big change for some, this “positive disruption” is giving the Aspire team a chance to step back and rethink traditional processes and old paradigms.
Drive is changing company culture and creating new levels of team collaboration. Drive has taught them to look at the way they manage documents differently. Instead of ongoing ‘FINAL FINAL’ versions of a document or emails with endless attachments, all employees access one source of truth for each file. Moreover, little conveniences like not needing to hit ‘Save’ when editing a file, confident that every keystroke is being autosaved, add to the sometimes hard-to-describe value add of G Suite. As David explains, “it’s hard to put a context around the value these little perks add. These are things we take for granted that really make a huge difference.”
Aspire Indiana employees went from using clunky PCs and on-premise servers to accessing their data in the cloud on any device at any time. They no longer log into complicated VPNs (which frequently malfunctioned). Instead, they can log into interactive displays, co-workers’ computers, tablets, phones, even TVs, and easily pull up their files & information. There’s no need for thumb drives and no need for software downloads. This has drastically changed their meetings.
Meetings: A stark before-and-after contrast
Before going Google, an Aspire Indiana conference room table would be covered with employees’ personal notes and papers. A delegated Recorder would double check everything each speaker said, making sure they get everything down correctly. Their notes would be handed out, and usually go sit on a desk to remained untouched along with each person’s personal notes.
Now, the only thing each employee places on the table is an internet connected device (computer, tablet, phone, etc.). Everyone accesses the same Agenda and Meeting Notes document online, and everyone takes notes together. Everyone is involved, everyone knows what’s going on, and there is no disagreement on what was said. With one source of truth accessible by all, each employee is able to add in whatever they find relevant, even enjoying the occasional spelling correction from their neighbor.
Conference room clutter has been further decreased by the hardware provided by Chromebox for Meetings: they’ve been able to ditch numerous conference phones and remove HDMI cables, connectors, adaptors, etc. All employees need is an internet connected device, and they can present & participate wirelessly.
ZixGateway: Security to match performance
In addition to the perks of G Suite, Aspire Indiana has implemented ZixGateway email encryption. Considering their initial email breach when running Outlook, email security has been a focus throughout their IT transition.
David states, candidly, while email is ubiquitous with communicating on the web, it was not designed with privacy or security in mind; Relying on users alone to encrypt their emails doesn’t work. On one hand, people forget. On the other, some don’t want to put their email recipients in a difficult position (having to log in to a portal to read an email). The whole process gets cumbersome, and employees wear down and give up.
With ZixGateway, email encryption is completely automated. An algorithm searches the outgoing emails for sensitive info (credit card numbers, Social Security numbers, patient health information, medical mecord numbers, etc.), and automatically encrypts emails as necessary. It is a tight system, and completely seamless to Aspire Indiana’s users.
Aspire Indiana is now fully functional in Google’s cloud, including their board of directors. Their collaboration, productivity, and data security are all on the rise, translating into more engaged employees and better care for the communities they serve. Cloudbakers was happy to give them the tools they needed to function at their highest level.