Time for a quick quiz. Can you name all the current types and versions of web browsers?
If you can, congratulations. However, it’s more likely that you’re in the same boat as Dave Imbrogno, district technology coordinator at Johnsonburg Area School District. At least when it comes to web-based email clients, the seemingly countless variations of web browsers isn’t a concern of Dave’s any more.
The small school district in western Pennsylvania is using Gaggle for staff email as well as archiving and backup. “We started to have all kinds of issues with our previous solution working,” recalled Dave. “With some of the newer web browsers and operating systems, more and more of our staff couldn’t open attachments or perform some other simple tasks.”
Dave’s biggest concern when moving the district’s 150 full- and part-time staff to Gaggle’s hosted email solution was the migration of email from an outdated server-based product. After some conversations with Gaggle’s implementation team, it was decided to turn off email on a Friday and do the message migration over a weekend. “I was nervous,” he recalled, “but the bottom line is that it went super-well smack in the middle of the school year.”
An additional benefit to the district was that Dave didn’t need to provide any training. “We used the Gaggle training videos and had very few questions,” he said. “Any inquiries from our staff are always handled directly through live chat, which is really great because they use it and don’t have to go through me.”
Prior to making the switch to using Gaggle for staff email, Johnsonburg Area School District also had been using a Barracuda appliance for archiving and backup, which similar to the district’s previous email system required regular maintenance costs that didn’t cover a new hardware. “We are small school district, but even so, I don’t know of many school districts excited about spending $4,000 or $5,000 every few years on a new server,” said Dave.
Finally, Dave is more than aware of the free email archiving products available to schools, but he has a simple answer when asked why he doesn’t consider them as a viable option. “I think you get what you pay for,” he said. “Sure, they might be world-class products from very well-known companies, but there won’t be the same level of customer service, and eventually there’s going to be something they will ask you to pay for.”