The business challenges
Lincolnshire Co-op has been serving the people of Lincolnshire and
surrounding areas for more than 150 years. Its family of businesses include
food stores, pharmacies, travel branches, filling stations, funeral homes,
a florist and post offices.
Lincolnshire Co-op provides a wide variety of products and services, but
something sets it apart from other retailers. All profits are recycled back
into the community to support local charities, schools and sport clubs.
It is an integral part of the social fabric. When it succeeds, the community
Lincolnshire Co-op is succeeding. In addition to increasing sales and
building new stores, it is winning awards. Investors in People, a nonprofit
accreditation organization, has awarded the Society, Investors in People
Platinum Status, meaning it is one of the country’s top employers.
Employees are fundamental to Lincolnshire Co-op success. Ryan Niblett,
Infrastructure Manager at the Society, makes sure the data they need for
their jobs is always available. Most of that data is in Exchange, SharePoint,
OneDrive for Business and Teams.
“Our challenge was protecting data as we migrated to Microsoft Office
365,” Niblett said. “Microsoft makes it clear they don’t offer backup,
so we considered three solutions from other vendors.”
Lincolnshire Co-op’s data protection requirements are precise. Backing
up on-premises isn’t an option because of connectivity speeds and concerns,
and backing up off-premises to another data center isn’t viable because
of the expense. To eliminate the risk of data loss, Lincolnshire Co-op wanted
to back up several times a day to guarantee multiple restore points. Two
of the solutions investigated only offered once-a-day backup.
“We also wanted fast, reliable recovery,” Niblett said. “One of our biggest
concerns was being able to recover data quickly and easily in case colleagues
accidentally delete it. So much of the data in Office 365 is vital to the
business, so if we cannot recover it, business operations would be impacted.
For example, employees rely on Teams to collaborate on seasonal inventory,
using Microsoft 365 to communicate with suppliers. If someone accidently
deletes this information, we need to have the ability to restore that data
quickly so that we can remain on top of issues and not run out of seasonal
goods at that critical time of year.”
The Veeam solution
Lincolnshire Co-op won’t run out of seasonal goods with Veeam® Backup
for Microsoft Office 365 and Azure Blob Storage. Veeam provides total
access and control of Office 365 data, enabling it to be backed up several
times a day and recovered quickly and easily. Veeam also leverages the cost
efficiency, simplicity and scalability of Azure Blob Storage and supports the
design, development and construction of new stores.
“Veeam is the only solution we considered that provides the flexibility,
speed, ease of use and affordability to meet our precise data protection
requirements,” Niblett said. “Veeam backs up to Azure Blob, giving us data
accessibility, retention and visibility while also saving money.”
Niblett said one of the things he appreciates most about Veeam is visibility
into the storage size of data contained in Office 365.
“Microsoft doesn’t provide great visibility into size, but that information
is important when you’re paying per gigabyte and per access. When you
use Veeam to back up to Azure Blob, size becomes evident, plus Veeam
compresses data, enabling us to maximize storage efficiency.”
Niblett said Veeam also ensures data availability.
“Our colleagues work a wide spread of hours across the week, so having
access to data at all times means that they can work efficiently,” Niblett
said. “They use a range of devices to access data, and with Veeam we’re able
to ensure that this data remains accessible at all times.”
Veeam supports the design, development and construction of new stores too.
“A lot of the planning we do for our new stores and refits takes place
in Office 365, so it’s important everyone has access to the wide range
of information required for scheduling and for installations of everything
from telecommunications and electricity to shelving and refrigeration,”
Niblett said. “Veeam keeps that information available.”
Moreover, Veeam keeps COVID-19 information available so employees know
what is being done in each retail environment to protect their safety and the
“Office 365 is critical to everything we do,” Niblett said. “Veeam protects
it so it’s always accessible.”
- Provides total access and control of data and protects against accidental
Lincolnshire Co-op eliminates the risk of data loss by using Veeam
to back up Office 365 data several times a day. Recovery is fast and easy
if employees accidentally delete emails, files and documents.
- Leverages the cost efficiency, simplicity and scalability of cloud object storage
Veeam simplifies backup to the cloud and maximizes storage efficiency
by compressing backups. Lincolnshire Co-op only pays Microsoft for what
- Supports the design, development and construction of new Lincolnshire
Veeam ensures all information related to planning and building new stores
is available to employees so everyone is aware of timetables and deadlines.