The business challenge
Just a few years ago, many jobs could be carried out on Swietelsky
construction sites without the need for constant connections to the
company’s IT. This is no longer the case. “We are currently seeing a huge
digitization push in the construction industry,” says Manuel Lehner,
Head of IT Infrastructure at Swietelsky. “Applications such as Building
Information Modeling or even the use of drones and augmented reality
glasses on construction sites require reliable data access at any location.”
The COVID-19 crisis has once again accelerated the digitization of work
processes at Swietelsky. To facilitate smooth collaboration during
the global pandemic, the construction company introduced Microsoft
Teams as a communication platform across the business. Initially, 5,500
Swietelsky employees used the solution primarily for online meetings.
Specialists on site were able to quickly and easily exchange information
with colleagues working from home or with service providers at other
locations. Video chats with clients to coordinate changes at short notice
were also now possible.
Employees quickly started to use Microsoft Teams to share documents
such as construction plans and photos or to jointly edit contracts online.
The platform increasingly became a knowledge repository and a project
management tool. “From the very beginning, we thought about how
we could reliably protect data from cyber risks and prevent possible
data loss,” says Lehner. “It was important for us to retain complete data
ownership. We want to decide for ourselves where we save information
and how long we keep it.”
This presented a significant technical challenge: Microsoft Teams is not
a standalone application, but a service that connects different resources from
the Office 365 world. Users’ data and content are stored in Exchange Online,
SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business, among others. “For this reason,
it can be very time-consuming to find team content that has been accidentally
deleted and make it accessible again,” says Gunter Natschläger, IT manager
responsible for backup and virtualization at Swietelsky. “Consequently,
we were looking for a solution that would enable comprehensive backup and
fast recovery of all information in Microsoft Teams.”
The Veeam solution
They scoured the market and evaluated Veeam® Backup for Microsoft Office
365, among other solutions. Swietelsky was one of the first companies to gain
access to the new Veeam Explorer™ for Microsoft Teams. “We quickly realized
that this solution met our requirements exactly,” says Natschläger. “Unlike
other products, Veeam offers flexible storage options and allows us to back
up all data from the cloud to our own data center. The decisive factor was the
ability to centrally back up all Microsoft Teams data, systematically search
it and restore it granularly.”
Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 gives Swietelsky complete control
over the diverse information shared and processed by its 5,500 Microsoft
Teams users. The solution not only backs up data stored in SharePoint Online,
Exchange Online and OneDrive for Business, it also accesses all relevant
metadata via a native Microsoft API. This enables the solution to identify
which data points are associated with which Teams channels. Microsoft Teams
configurations, permissions, applications and tabs are also automatically
backed up by Veeam.
Veeam Explorer for Microsoft Teams simplifies the targeted search for files and
content in the backed up Teams data. Entire company channels can be flexibly
restored with just a few clicks, right down to the file and message level.
“The restore function works incredibly quickly and easily,” says Natschläger.
“It doesn’t require any special knowledge; our employees were able to use the
tool immediately, without any training.”
After the convincing test results, Swietelsky quickly decided to deploy Veeam
Backup for Microsoft Office 365 across the company. “Product experts from
Veeam gave us some valuable tips, for example on optimizing performance
in conjunction with the Microsoft cloud. They also helped us to perfectly map
our individual retention policies,” says Natschläger.
Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 provides managers with detailed daily
reports on the backups that have been performed. If an error occurs, the
IT team is notified immediately and can take the necessary measures. Once
a quarter, a detailed restore test is then performed as part of an internal audit.
“With Veeam, we do not only have the certainty that our team data
is secure, but we can also prove this at any time,” says Natschläger. “Thanks
to Veeam, we passed the mandatory restore tests for our ISO/IEC 27001
certification with flying colors. More than 40 GB of data could be restored
in less than 30 minutes.”
“Our direction is clear: In the future, cloud services such as Microsoft Office
365 will play an increasingly important role in our work,” says Lehner. “The
switch from our on-prem Exchange infrastructure to an Exchange Online
solution has already begun, for example. The fact that we have already
found the right backup solution with Veeam makes this process much easier.
We expect to complete the migration faster than planned.”
- Comprehensive data protection for 5,500 Microsoft Teams users:
Swietelsky’s employees in 19 countries increasingly communicate via
Microsoft Teams and share thousands of documents and messages via the
platform every day. Veeam protects all content stored there from data
loss due to accidental deletion or security threats.
- Restoring Microsoft Teams objects in minutes:
“Veeam is much
easier to use than other backup solutions we have worked with,” says
Natschläger. “We can use it to restore individual files or even complete
channels and tabs in Microsoft Teams with just a few clicks.”
- Reliable adherence to ISO/IEC 27001 and other compliance requirements:
Swietelsky uses Veeam to ensure important information such
as construction warranties is stored securely for the prescribed period.
Veeam’s integrated eDiscovery capabilities make it easy to retrieve
emails, documents or chats for legally required purposes. Swietelsky also
conducts regular restore tests with Microsoft Teams data, meeting the
requirements for ISO/IEC 27001 certification of IT.