SMS Oilfield goes global with Office 365

After a year-long struggle to find a cloud migration provider they could trust, SMS Oilfield finally found Cloud Direct, who successfully migrated the business to Microsoft Office 365 Exchange Online. The move has freed the business and its people, who can now work increasingly productively while they travel the globe servicing clients in the oil and gas industry.

Key points

  • Decided on email migration as server overloaded
  • Took a year before they found a provider they could trust
  • Migrated to Office 365 Business Premium licences with admin support
  • Company global and can now keep working wherever they are
  • Their future is moving more data and systems to the cloud


Experts in sensor data acquisition, reporting and analysis for the oil and gas industry, SMS Oilfield is headquartered in Aberdeen, Scotland, with regional offices in Kuala Lumpur and Abu Dhabi. As a service company, their people are often travelling or on-site with a customer.

Vidhyasagar (Sagar) Vivekanandan took over the company’s IT system administration in 2014, when their networking structure was five years old.

The challenge

By 2015, there was little space left on the server and Sagar found himself spending a lot of time trying to update the existing network architecture. Cloud migration seemed the obvious solution, although it would be too complex to extract and migrate all of the server data – including contact details, emails and active directory – at once.

And so Sagar began a year-long search for a reliable cloud IT provider who could provide cloud migration and subscriptions at a reasonable price.

In April 2016, Sagar received an invitation to a Cloud Direct webinar on email migration to Office 365. Sagar then spoke with Cloud Direct and the search was over.

Sagar said: “For the first time in my year-long search, someone was able to clearly explain to me exactly how the cloud migration would work and what my options were.”

The solution

SMS Oilfield appointed Cloud Direct to migrate their email to Office 365 on Business Premium licences. This gives them:

  • The latest online versions of Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote)
  • Exchange Online business-class email and calendars
  • OneDrive file storage and sharing
  • Yammer social networking for business
  • Skype for Business for unlimited online meetings, Instant Messenger and high definition video conferencing

Their Office 365 Business Premium package also gives them a full, installed Office experience across PCs, Macs, Windows tablets and iPad and Android tablets, as well as most mobile devices. Each of their users can install the latest version of Office on five PCs or Macs, five tablets and five phones.

In terms of file storage and sharing, they get one terabyte per user. Plus they get a 50 gigabyte inbox.

They also opted for Cloud Direct’s administrator support package. This is ideal for them as they don’t have a large or highly skilled IT department, so Cloud Direct’s support for Office 365 frees up some of Sagar’s time so he can focus on more strategic areas of the business’s IT needs. The business now has a named account team who will:

  • support and manage their Office 365 environment
  • Add, move and change licences
  • Activate and deactivate functionality
  • Make configuration changes
  • Investigate outages or loss of function
  • Cloud Direct also decommissioned their Exchange server and provided webinar training.

Sagar said: “There are lots of benefits across the business as well as for my particular role. One key benefit is that it helps us keep working wherever we are. When we started the business we only really worked in the UK. Now we have a lot of international customers and travel a lot, so Office 365 really helps us keep on top of emails and meetings, for example. For me, personally, no longer having to manage Exchange on the server has lifted a great burden from my shoulders. I don’t have to stress about our emails anymore.”

Results and future plans

Savings across the business are evident, as they no longer lose time travelling, and Sagar is now free to focus on the more strategic aspect to their business IT systems. He said: “I feel I chose the right guys for the implementation.”

“It helps us keep working wherever we are” – Vidhyasagar Vivekanandan

Now that SMS Oilfield has moved their email to the cloud, they want to do the same with their data. They’re now looking to implement SharePoint, Planner and OneDrive in Office 365.

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