Microsoft Office 365 to replace Lotus Notes email

As part of the FSU University Plan for IT published last summer, a University committee was established to review options to replace our Lotus Notes email system. The committee was made up of faculty from different campuses and staff that have various roles at the University. From January through April 2013, this committee worked diligently to consider our options and make an informed product selection. The committee finalized its recommendation of Microsoft Office 365 on May 7 and submitted the report to the President's Council for their consideration. After a thorough discussion, the Council unanimously supported the committee's recommendation on June 3.

Microsoft Office 365 was selected as the next generation collaboration and productivity suite for many reasons. This product will provide Ferris faculty and staff with enterprise-grade communication and productivity services like email, online document editing and storage, instant messaging, and web conferencing. In addition, Microsoft Office 365 was able to meet our security and accessibility needs.

During the next six months, our IT staff will work on the implementation, communication, and training plan for the University. The conversion for the faculty and staff email is planned for January 2014 through August 2014.

I would like to thank the committee members and the President's Council for the time and commitment to this endeavor. Their work will have a lasting impression on the way we do business and collaborate in the future.

If you would like to read the committee's full recommendation, please visit

John L. Urbanick
Chief Technology Officer
Ferris State University

Last updated: 04-11-2014