ITS is implementing Office 365 (O365) for all faculty and staff during the last week of June. Between now and then, many activities will be taking place to ensure a seamless experience when the migration actually begins. O365 is Microsoft’s cloud service providing email, calendar, and personal file storage. UNB students, alumni, and retirees have been using O365 for years; by integrating faculty and staff accounts with O365, exceptional opportunities for internal collaboration, seamless communication, increased efficiency and reduced costs will finally be realized.
The migration process
Over the last couple of months, ITS migrated accounts for trial groups comprised of ITS staff, Level 1s, and volunteers from across the university. The migration process entails copying account data and contents from our current, on‐premises systems to the new Microsoft environment (each institution is assigned ‘tenant’ space in the Microsoft cloud—this is where our accounts physically reside). As each group was migrated, we carefully monitored results to ensure no account data and content was lost, the voicemail service worked as expected, and any technical configuration issues were detected and resolved. Calendar data and functionality received special attention; other schools that have gone through this process have advised that calendar entries (and in particular calendar delegation) can be tricky.
The migration process is managed by ITS staff, but Level 1s will be on the ground to ensure everything goes smoothly for individuals, including reconfiguring mail settings, and ensuring calendars are populated correctly. They’ll be available to answer any questions you may have about the new services, and ITS has an extensive FAQ covering pretty much all O365 topics.
How will O365 impact you?
- No two O365 experiences will be the same. Faculty and staff will experience O365 in various ways depending on how you engage with the new functionality O365 offers. For some, the benefits will be immediate, while for others, it may be several months before you explore and take advantage of new features.
- Some key changes with O365:
- 100 GB email quota – this massive increase in quota size will cause immediate relief for anyone who regularly has to delete mail to make room for new inbox items.
- Junk mail filtering – The O365 spam filter rules are different from those in our current environment; as a result, some emails that previously went to your inbox may go into your junk mail folder after the migration. Additionally, messages in your junk folder will automatically delete after 30 days – this is a default setting in O365 that cannot be changed. To ensure you don’t miss any important emails, check your junk mail folder regularly after the migration and mark any legitimate messages as ‘not junk’.
- Recovering deleted files – O365 allows you to recover your own deleted items within 30 days of them being deleted. It’s important to note once those 30 days have passed, items are deleted permanently and are no longer recoverable by you or ITS.
What you can do to prepare for O365
- Attend an ‘O365 – What to Expect’ information session. During these sessions, ITS will be discussing O365 and its benefits, as well as what to expect during and after your O365 migration. Sessions are open to all faculty and staff and will be held on both campuses ‐ stay tuned for specific dates and locations to come.
- Review our O365 website – http://go.unb.ca/o365 – This website provides details on all things O365, including, FAQ and instructions for setting up your devices after the migration.
Support during migration week (June 26‐30)
- The UNB Service Desk (formerly the Help Desk) will be extending its business hours the week of the migration. Full time staff will be available later in the evenings to help as needed. ITS staff and Level 1s will also be readily available throughout the day to provide support.
If you have issues accessing your email through your Outlook client or on your mobile device after the migration, you can access your email through the Outlook Web App (OWA) ‐ accessed via the email link in your myUNB Portal ‐ until the issues are resolved.
June 5, 2017, Terry Nikkel, AVP, ITS/Nicki Smith, ITS Communications