With a material portion of your messaging residing in the cloud and managed by Microsoft, knowing when and why declines in service quality occur can be a challenge. Find out why.
Assuming you’re using Office 365, you’re not alone; there are over 200 million corporate users (according to Microsoft’s Q1 FY 20 shareholder’s call). Now, presuming that you either have a hybrid environment or are thinking of going hybrid (based on you reading this article), it’s important to realize that with the choice to leverage a cloud service – any cloud service – the potential is there for service quality issues. And while Microsoft takes extensive strides to ensure the highest levels of service availability and integrity, even they are susceptible to issues.
So, why is service quality a challenge in a Hybrid Exchange environment?
It’s not because Microsoft isn’t doing their job (they are!); it’s more about the nature of the environment. Here are three reasons why it may be a challenge for you to ensure service quality with Office 365.
- Visibility – Because you don’t own the cloud-half of your Exchange environment, you have limited visibility into what cloud services are working, what’s not running optimally, and what’s down. Is the problem with something on your end or Microsoft’s?
- Granularity – Digging a bit deeper into the visibility issue, there is a lack of granularity available. Is the issue with routing? Namespace? Edge services? Is it a specific server that’s having a problem? Or is it just one of your users with a misconfigured endpoint?
- Control – With little visibility and pretty much no detail, there’s not much you can offer to Microsoft support when calling on an issue. So, with no ability to help things along, you’re simply going to need to wait for them to diagnose any issues that may (or may not) exist and take appropriate action.
With a hybrid environment, you will always have limited ability to view and manage those service components that you no longer own. So, it’s important to look for ways to regain visibility into every part of the environment in order to be able to provide Microsoft some idea of where to look in order to speed up the restoration of services to an acceptable level.