In February 2016, Google commissioned Forrester Consulting to conduct a Total Economic ImpactTM (TEI) study and examine the potential return on investment (ROI) enterprises may realize by migrating to Google Apps for Work from an alternative cloud messaging and collaboration platform. The purpose of this study is to provide readers with a framework to evaluate the potential financial impact of Google Apps on their organizations.

Google Apps for Work is a suite of cloud applications that includes Gmail, Google Drive (file storage and sharing), Hangouts (video meetings and chat), Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, Calendar, and Sites. As the cloud messaging and collaboration market space matures and end user organizations gain experience in migrating from corporate-owned, on-
premises infrastructure to cloud platforms, a segment of organizations are already reevaluating their first cloud migrations and cloud partners — some have even embarked on a second migration from one cloud to another.

This evaluation begins by shifting more obvious on-premise to cloud benefits like hardware reduction (e.g., email servers) and maintenance cost avoidance from a future state and a benefit to a current state and a standard. That is, the value of switching to Google Apps for an organization that is already using a cloud-based messaging and collaboration platform is not in the amount of hardware that can be decommissioned; instead, the cloud-to-cloud migration discussion emphasizes the features, capabilities, and outcomes that Google Apps can bring to the business in the context of cloud competitors.

To better understand the benefits, costs, and risks associated with migrating from an alternative cloud messaging and collaboration platform to Google Apps, Forrester interviewed seven existing Google customers that can be considered midsize. All interviewed organizations have previously used an alternative cloud platform and desired a combination of the following from a Google Apps migration: simpler and leaner unified communications; similar high-quality user experience regardless of device or operating system (OS); capability for real-time multiuser content creation and editing; and effective customer service that consistently meets SLAs regardless of region. Readers should be aware that these migration goals for Google Apps are highlighted by seven interviewed customers. Certain functional, technical, and quality gaps may not be relevant to all organizations especially as competing platforms, including Google, enhance their technology over time.