Jones Companies embraces the Cloud and brings it all together


What started in 1949 as a small business in South Mississippi has grown to become the national market share leader in several industries.

Under the Jones Companies umbrella are multiple distinct businesses. Each division has their own facilities, equipment, customers, employees, service areas, and technology needs. As new businesses joined the Jones Companies family, the IT team was inheriting a hodge-podge of on-premises Microsoft Exchange servers, POP3 servers, and huge historical archives locked in personal storage table (PST) files on aging desktops.

Providing legacy on-premises IT to these 10 disparate companies became prohibitively expensive and impossible to manage effectively. Internal communications suffered and the user experience was inconsistent at best. Cloud Computing and Google Apps for Business provided a better solution.

With Google Apps for Business, Jones Companies brought all of the businesses together on one platform, while still maintaining distinct corporate branding and identities. Google Premier Partner Umzuzu provided tools to migrate each divisions’ historical data and bring them all under one Google Apps control panel. Jones Companies’ Network Engineer, Allen Turnage, shared some feedback on their experience:

Umzuzu and Google have been extraordinary to work with. They made the transition to Google Apps for Business very efficient. We really enjoy all the great applications we get with Google Apps and we have improved the consistency and reliability of our messaging and collaboration tools tremendously. In addition to gaining functionality and improving reliability we achieved tremendous cost savings with Google Apps.

Fueled by organic growth and strategic acquisitions, Jones Companies has doubled their number of employees since moving to Google Apps. Google Apps provides them with the flexibility to integrate these new employees and businesses. Through multiple domain support each new company and their users are added to the Jones Companies’ Google Apps domain. The companies retain their identity, but also gain access to the Jones Companies’ corporate resources and expertise. They can find each other in global contacts, view calendars, meet via Hangouts, and collaborate using Google Drive and Docs. Jones Companies manages all of their users and domains from a single admin console providing a level of control, reporting, and governance not possible before the move to Google Apps. 

Employees can leverage Google services from any location and from any computer or mobile device, this improves productivity while also reducing the costs of providing IT services to geographically diverse locations. With Google Apps for Business scalability is no longer a challenge. Jones Companies can add as many new businesses and employees as they'd like while optimizing their IT operating expense as a percentage of revenue. Cloud computing with Google Apps for Business allows Jones Companies to bring it all together.