Recently, I planned on moving my personal mail and files to Office 365. The marketing ads were glossy and the people in them looked happy. And it was from Microsoft, a company that truly can deliver some great stuff and whose products I work with professionally. But this time around, everything failed.
Maybe, one day we will meet again, but for now it is bye bye to Microsoft for the following reasons:
The support: I had migrating issues when moving my mail, but when I contacted the support, I instead had both migration and support problems. Sometimes, three people answered my emails in parallel, not knowing what the others answered. And no one could help me. Finally, I paid for a third-party product (MigrationWiz from BitTitan) and everything worked perfectly. Finally, the manager and the manager’s manager at Microsoft said sorry, but by then I had already done (and paid for) the migration.
–> Tips to Microsoft: Train your support people, and improve your processes, to be truly awesome. I don’t blame the individual operators, but instead your way of approaching customers with support issues. And partner with BitTitan to help your customers move to your surroundings swiftly.
The file limitations: Aaargh! This is like Microsoft telling me “Please don’t join us. We don’t like users.” They even have a long support page lovingly called “Restrictions and limitations when you sync SharePoint libraries to your computer through OneDrive for Business“. The amount of job you expect me to do is ridiculous. Dropbox and others manage all this quietly and effectively, so why can’t you?
–> Tips to Microsoft: Remove 90% of these restrictions, and just keep the ones you absolutely need.
The sync engine: Aaargh! again. It seems Microsoft is stuck in a vortex of bad coding for their OneDrive sync engines. They just updated it and had a gazillion promises. But hello! Double installs and libraries, mysterious shutdowns, no clue on how much is left or what has synced.
–> Tips to Microsoft: Never, never ever release a sync client that isn’t working as well as Dropbox’s. They have always been the leader also here, and I cannot see why you couldn’t match them.
If I knew people in the Office 365 team, I would tell them they are doing an awesome job. Meanwhile, I would also emphasize that the above are quite serious flaws. Communicate that you take this seriously before end of April, and then keep end customers updated. Maybe one day I will return from Google Apps mail and Dropbox.