Bayer to start migration to Microsoft next year

by Volker Weber

Published on the Bayer News Channel:

Leverkusen. Send electronic messages instantly, collaborate on documents or hold a video conference - all from your own desk and with just a few mouse clicks. That's what the new "Personalized WorkPlace" program will soon mean for the Bayer world. In late 2010, Bayer will begin the multi-year migration to a new technology based on email and teamwork functions from Microsoft.

As you can see from the URL, currently a Notes customer. With more than 100,000 seats ...

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Update: IBM has asked me to also tell you about their win. There you go.


Autsch, das ist bitter für IBM

Rene Hellmann, 2009-07-10

love hurts...

Patrick Kwinten, 2009-07-10

I think this goes clearly beyond the usual outch. Organizations like Bayer stand out and this move will not remain unnoticed in Germany's corporate IT world.

If I remember right, the last real(!) win IBM published was a ~1.000 people Telco in Asia.

Lucius Bobikiewicz, 2009-07-10

Lucius, you should read the right sources:

Philipp Koenigs, 2009-07-10

Microsoft Outlook, including upcoming 2010 is just email, calender, addresses, this is technology out of the 80ies. Innovation and future directions are concepts like Google Wave or IBM Lotus Connections.

Andreas Pleschek, 2009-07-10

by the way, both can be connected to Notes or the IBM Open Client on multiplatforms

Andreas Pleschek, 2009-07-10

Äh, bitte? Soll das heissen, die können bei Bayer im Moment nicht mal just eine Email schicken? Die können nicht von ihrem Schreibtisch aus gemeinsam an Dokumenten arbeiten? Aber jetzt wird zum Glück alles besser, einfacher und auf Mausklick! Sogar mit Videokonferenzen, sapperlot!

(Ist die Pressemitteilung von 1998? Zeitloch?)

Kristof Doffing, 2009-07-10

Das habe ich auch gedacht. Nein, vom Ende letzten Monats.

Volker Weber, 2009-07-10

"In late 2010, Windows for Workgroups 3.11 will be introduced on all desktop PCs ..."

Kristof Doffing, 2009-07-10

Also ich glaub nicht, dass sie noch OS/2 haben. Aber genug gefrotzelt ...

Volker Weber, 2009-07-10

Thanks you for the nice link.

The text might be weird but blaming the client being stupid instead of asking "how could we have done better" is a reliable method for loosing the next client.

Lucius Bobikiewicz, 2009-07-10

Lucius, Kristof is completely unrelated to Bayer. OK, he might be buying Aspirin once in a while, but that's about it. :-)

Volker Weber, 2009-07-10

Lotus Notes for Outlook users?

Dennis Ellison, 2009-07-10

Dazu gibt es aber wiedersprüchliche Informationen. Mein Kentnisstand ist, dass die Migration nach MS Exchange nach ausgiebiger Evaluierung verworfen wurde.

Sharepoint, in Verbindung mit einem Domino Connector,ist weiterhin ein Thema , bzw. wird eingesetzt (werden). Quickr scheint wohl in deren Augen noch nicht soo enterprisefähig zu sein.

Marc Egart, 2009-07-10

Dear Bayer-Workers, please accept my sincere condolences. My heart goes out to the soon suffering IT personnel.
Unfortunately this move seems symptomatic for corporate Germany who answers the challenges of an online world with stoneage tools. Maybe the government will once again step in with a "Bad Decision" fund, which will become the scrapyard for all failed ICT projects. Not that this would help of course :-)

Moritz Schroeder, 2009-07-10

It did not come to my mind Kristoff might have been responsible for this :)

I just think it is wrong to look down at Bayer for making this decision. Not only Big Blue but the whole Notes community will be much better off when blaming the customer is a no-go and is replaced by thorough and open analysis.

Lucius Bobikiewicz, 2009-07-10

Nobody has blamed the customer (so far). Kristof thought it was funny, what Bayer wants to have beginning next year. And I agree with him.

Volker Weber, 2009-07-10

Big pharma used to be a Notes stronghold. That is certainly not the case anymore. Between 1996-2001 Bayer Canada was one of my largest clients. I developed several SFA applications for various divisions as well as field service and clinical trials. I was very involved in Notes and SAP integration during their migration to SAP leading up to Y2K.

In the early 2000's They went through tough times and implemented a "no external consultants" policy as a cost saving measure. The people I used to deal with left during various re-organizations and layoffs and I moved on.

I was surprised to hear that they were still using Notes. Don't be shocked if IBM Global Services bids on the migration work.

Brent Henry, 2009-07-10

Brent, they are actually very strong into Notes. That is why I find this quite surprising.

Volker Weber, 2009-07-10

Migration is a customers best weapon to say no although it is a bit pity that they solely seem to move to Microsoft. For Bayer many of the usual excuses (old versions, poor IT staff, only using mail) probably won't work.
As Quickr was mentioned. Sometimes it is good that IBM marketing lacks some power although Microsoft is probably quite happy that it exists and be it only to shine with Sharepoint.
I am still sad. Big Corporations can miss thousands of opportunities or sacrifice business for a corporate strategy and still make so much money that at the end it does not matter.

Henning Heinz, 2009-07-10

Continental bought VDO from Siemens and now makes the switch to Notes. It is a good story although not brand new. I mentioned it on Ed Brill's blog in March 2009 and it wasn't new even then.
If you have a takeover at the end often not the better system wins but the one that the buying company has in use. Still seats are seats.

Henning Heinz, 2009-07-10

And Microsoft is steaming up for the next release of their Office Suite:

Watch the 'Office 2010 the Movie' on youtube

Count your seats.

Frank van Rijt, 2009-07-10

Yes, you should really watch it. It's ridiculous.

Volker Weber, 2009-07-10

Dear IBM:

I'd love you read your release that you persuaded Vowe to put on this article. But your web site isn't working. Is it shut down out of office hours, just like your Partnerworld download site?

On a more serious note. Bayer, GSK and various other high-level Notes losses represent a pretty significant turning point in how IBM gets business.

Its the end of IBM as a 'trusted advisor' to the largest businesses.

Certainly, when I worked via Lotus Consulting for Philips (Eindhoven is very like Levercusen in some respects), IBM were trusted advisors to the top levels of large companies - its natural place and the place its been for a very long time indeed.

IBM specialise in solving very large problems for very large companies. It does this very well. The top 35 companies in Europe for instance, will all have dedicated IBM staff, dedicated IBM marketing and so forth. The largest were treated as countries in their own right, and IBM software was routinely licensed to these large customers on a global rental basis. They got the whole of the IBM software suite for a fixed price every year.

Those times are no more, it would appear. IBM no longer whispers in the CIO's ears. It has to compete out there in the marketplace with companies who have lived on the streets, fighting for their money all their lives.

Take the Lotus presence in Scotland. Scotland - a country with 5m people, and a very high proportion of civil service employees, and a lower than average number of head offices - has a very small Lotus presence. One sales chap, I believe.

Microsoft, Lotus's direct competitor in terms of mail, collaboration sites (Sharepoint vs Quickr), IM, Portals, office software, etc, have the old post office building in Princes Street, beside the Balmoral Hotel.

Hundreds of folks. And of course Microsoft know about marketing. Innovation isn't their strong point, but marketing, support, consulting on their products - its quite hard to build a case against them.

IBM of course don't market individual products (they claim). They only do tier 1 marketing - this 'Smarter Planet' rubbish for instance, claiming huge environmental gains or social redresses. How on earth this helps them drive sales of Notes, god only knows.

And so the IBM brand, and the IBM market share - especially in terms of Lotus - continues to nose dive here in the UK.

I sincerely hope that the Bayer decision - for whatever reason - doesn't meant the beginning of the end for Lotus in Germany too.

---* Bill

Bill Buchan, 2009-07-11

Bill, thanks for your insights into Scotland. Did not know much about the business there. But you certainly cannot transfer that knowledge to Germany. Bayer is not the end of Lotus here. IBM fought, but in the end they lost. They don't lose all the time, and they are not giving up. The press release points to a win.

Volker Weber, 2009-07-11

But if you lose those that once were strong believers how will you ever get real new customers? Companies that switch to IBM Lotus from other products because they think it is a better technology that will move them forward.
How should any company do serious development with Notes and Domino if everything that goes beyond 8.5.1 is kept as a secret but so many parts in the product are broken (CSS, Javascript support in the client, Notes Rich Text, ridiculous size limitations, Basic client support, mobile support, Java limitations with Notes objects, client performance problems, nsf limitations that start to hurt, a broken development model with the new design elements still not integrated into Domino Designer and 1000 more things). And this stuff does not even run supported on all 64-Bit platforms while the competition already starts abandoning 32-Bit.
I know I complain and post too much. I'll try to behave and go shopping for now.

Henning Heinz, 2009-07-11

@Volker: Unfortunately the press release only points to a "document not found" message. "Bitte entschuldigen Sie. Die gewünschte Seite kann nicht angezeigt werden."

Oliver Stör, 2009-07-11

From the inventors of the Nonpermalink. It was working Friday. :-)

Volker Weber, 2009-07-11

Hält die Software von IBM eigentlich länger als ihre Links?
(die Server tun es)

Kai Schmalenbach, 2009-07-11

Mission accomplished - naja, fast :) ...

Ingo Seifert, 2010-12-20

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