Microsoft Exchange Review

It has good integration with other Microsoft tools and allows us to retain and recover an email deleted by a user

What is our primary use case?

It is an email solution with all the capabilities similar to different email solutions. We basically use it for internal emails and for making reservations. We have some shared mailboxes to receive communication from general entities.

What is most valuable?

It has a feature that allows you to retain an email and recover it as an administrator. When you activate this feature, even if a user deletes an email, the email is still in the system, and we can retrieve it as an administrator. It is a very useful function. We turn this feature on for some of the mailboxes because we need to keep all the records.

I like the way emails are classified in this solution. It makes it really easy to take a look at the most important messages. This is a really good functionality. Some of the emails directly exchanged with you are marked as important and shown in one tab, and everything else is in another tab.

We usually don't have any issue with Exchange. It can be integrated with different solutions. 

What needs improvement?

Its search functionality can be better. It is currently not really easy. It has the capability to search your mailbox, but it has some restrictions in terms of the number of results that you can retrieve. You can only get around 250 results. If you want to do a deeper search, you need to use different functionalities of the product. The policy that we have for handling emails is that we do not delete emails at all. If I insert the text that I am searching for in the Search field, it only retrieves a limited number of emails. To search for an email from 2010, I need to use different search functions to find what I am looking for.

Microsoft can also improve its licensing for its products. Microsoft's licensing is not very easy to understand. It can sometimes be really complex to understand what you need to have in order to comply with Microsoft licensing.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Microsoft Exchange since I joined this company back in 2008.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Microsoft Exchange has been pretty stable. The problem we faced was because we forgot to delete some of the rules that were created automatically. The problem was on our side. 

We also have Exchange Online, and we have experienced an issue with it in the past. Microsoft had a huge outage about three or four months ago, and we didn't have any access to our email in the cloud. That's the only time we experienced a problem with Exchange Online.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We are a mid-size company with 350 employees. We haven't experienced any problems with scalability or faced a situation where we need to quickly increase the capacity of the system. The company has grown over the last ten years and has added around 100 employees. It has worked for us in terms of scalability, but I don't know if it works for companies bigger than ours.

We have all kinds of users. There is a mix of different functions that are using the system. Our core business is for operating power plants, so our employees are plant operators. Half of our users are plant operators, and we also have a mix of engineers, accountants, commercial staff, legal department, and HR department. 

How are customer service and technical support?

We have not contacted their technical support. We found all the documentation on the Microsoft site very useful. 

How was the initial setup?

I was not the one who implemented this solution. Based on my understanding from the technical department, installing it in an on-premises environment is easy. Creating or handling all the emails on the cloud is also really easy. The most complex process that we have done so far is migration. We have a hybrid environment with half of them on-premises and half of them on the essential line. Integrating these two environments was the most difficult task. You need to understand both environments to integrate them. We didn't have a lot of problems with this integration. It is a difficult task, but it is not impossible.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Its price is very affordable, and basically, it is the standard of the industry. We have the Exchange 365 subscription, which includes the usage of Exchange Online. I don't know the specific cost, but it is the retail price of Microsoft 365 E3 licenses.

Microsoft's licensing is not very easy to understand. Microsoft changes rules every other day, which makes it difficult for us to understand the licensing not only for Exchange but also for other products. It can sometimes be really complex to understand what you need to have in order to comply with Microsoft licensing.

What other advice do I have?

Its technical implementation is quite good. It is stable and can be accessed through all kinds of devices. You can access it through a client for your mobile phones or computer. It performs pretty well. Microsoft is a market leader with a presence everywhere, which makes it easy to find support.

I would recommend this solution. I would advise others to also go for the entire suite of Office 365 along with Microsoft Exchange. I don't know if Exchange licenses are sold separately. If you are already using Microsoft tools, it makes sense to go for Microsoft Exchange because it has native integration with all those tools.

I would rate Microsoft Exchange a nine out of ten.

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**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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