This post is part 4 of a 4-part series featuring real-world companies that transformed their business by integrating Microsoft’s most competitive and seamless cloud product to date, Office 365.
Helly Hansen is a global brand that produces and sells clothing made for the outdoors. Headquartered in Oslo, Norway, Helly Hansen has retail stores located throughout Europe and North America as well as offices all around the world.
1. lack of communication tools was holding helly hansen back
Employees used outdated and unreliable email and phone systems to communicate. Helly Hansens IT environment was not very organized, resulting in multiple versions of Exchange server and Outlook used by employees. Customers and suppliers often had trouble contacting the Oslo office due to phone system outages. Multiple stores did not receive phone service and had to rely on the store manager’s mobile phone to communicate. The small IT staff spent more time making sure these systems were still functioning rather than focusing on higher value initiatives.
Helly Hansen needed better tools in place so that employees could communicate more effectively, especially internationally. Most of the teams are geographically diverse so it is critical that these offices have the ability to communicate and collaborate efficiently.
2. more features, same cost
Due to lack of resources, it would be hard for Helly Hansen to make all the changes needed to improve its work environment. It would be expensive and they are made of a small IT staff. They decided to adopt the Office 365 E4 plan. It’s easy to add or remove users at no added cost, limiting the financial risk.
"Our costs will basically stay the same once deployment is complete, but with Office 365, we are getting all of the Skype for Business capabilities as well and we free up our IT staff from managing applications to working on strategic projects." - Sandy Abrahams, IT Director, Helly Hansen
Helly Hansen employees benefitted largely from using Exchange Online. They now have fast and reliable email, as well as 25-gigabyte mailbox storage. They no longer have to worry about one of their email servers shutting down or having IT spend time troubleshooting servers.
Helly Hansen uses SharePoint Online to increase productivity and collaboration across the company. Teams and projects are created in SharePoint and they use shared calendars to stay up to date on different promotions or events that are going on. Any files that need to be sent out are put into SharePoint so that large files no longer have to be sent over email.
4. skype for business- replacing travel culture
Skype for Business has been a huge help with communicating across offices and retail stores. Store locations use Skype for Business instead of a typical landline to decrease phone costs. Stores are also equipped with video cameras so that marketing managers are able to video chat stores and give feedback on the displays. Helly Hansen started encouraging more of its employees to use video capabilities instead of traveling for meetings. For example, they can now videoconference with manufacturers in Hong Kong to review clothing samples instead of make the trek. Helly Hansen has reduced the budget for mobile phone costs by 10 percent.
Helly Hansen was able to throw out 11 Exchange servers that proved to be time consuming and unreliable. Overall, Office 365 has benefitted Helly Hansen in more ways than they thought possible while staying within a reasonable budget.