back to article Airbus CIO: We dumped Microsoft Office not over cost but because Google G Suite looks sweet

Collaboration rather than cost is the reason Airbus has given Microsoft’s old-world Office app bundle the heave ho and is migrating 130,000 staff – the entire workforce – to Google’s G Suite. As exclusively revealed by The Register on Wednesday, Airbus – yes, the designer, builder and seller of civil and military aeronautical …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Collaboration rather than cost is the reason"

    Well yes GS enterprise costs $25 a month - $5 more than Office E3.

    "We want people to fundamentally reconsider how they work and move away from old ways of working,"

    So we are going to give them a crappy feature limited office package so that they will be busy bitching that nothing works anymore and they will have to colaborate to work out how to get anything done.

    " like sending millions of emails around,” said Hennekens."

    And we are taking Outlook away to break that too.

    My money says at least 10% of them will still need a proper local MS Office install, amd that they will move to O365 within 3 years!

    1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      "My money says at least 10% of them will still need a proper local MS Office install"

      What exactly will the need consist of for a company with over 100k employees who are in a position to dictate document formats to their suppliers?

      I hope I'm not being snarky; I'm asking a serious question. Airbus uses CAD and a whole lot of modelling software from FEA through the whole gamut of CAM, along with things like Mathematica. They probably have a documentation department that handles everything from Adobe through to CTP software. So what features of Excel or Word are they likely to need that are not already being done by more capable, dedicated software, and which are also not available in Docs?

      1. Roger Greenwood

        I'm with you - right tool for the job. Standard office tools have a place but far too often we get engineering drawings somehow created in a spreadsheet and sent to us. That's room plans, schematics, mechanical panel layouts, anything to avoid using a proper CAD system. Completely inappropriate but cheap! As the article says, they are trying to reduce the amount of email, empower more of the workforce and do things differently - makes sense. Google started about 10 years ahead of Microsoft on collaboration and I'm not sure they've caught up yet.

        1. fajensen Silver badge

          ... anything to avoid using a proper CAD system. Completely inappropriate but cheap!

          One does not want non-CAD users to be using a proper CAD system because whatever they produce, while using an enormous amount of time on the task, will still be straight-up garbage and has to be redone anyway!

          The proper CAD systems come with numerous rules, requirements and licensing costs that none of the "clients" that "just" want a design done according to the rules and processes that the business requires have time, staff and budget to deal with.

          With Google they probably get Scetch-up too - which is good enough to explain to the CAD-person what one wants and a standard tool (since they roll it out everywhere). Of course Boeing now also get acces to everything via TISA; but, anything to keep the yanks happy!

      2. TReko

        Office to Docs collaboration

        Most of our company is forced to use Google Docs. It is good, but limited. Some of us have a waiver and continue using Word and Excel. We use the Syncdocs plugin to collaborate in real-time between Docs and Office.

      3. katrinab Silver badge

        "So what features of Excel or Word are they likely to need that are not already being done by more capable, dedicated software, and which are also not available in Docs?"

        The accounts department is going to need Excel. Calculating lease discounts and interest; interest rate swaps, currency swaps etc on Google Sheets is not going to be fun.

        1. Anonymous Bullard

          The accounts department is going to need Excel

          Because a single department possibly uses the advanced features of Excel*, the entire company must also use it?

          *(Let's ignore the fact they're probably using dedicated software)

          I agree that Word+Excel are probably the best - as a Linux user I do miss a few features when writing software specs. However, that's because I actually know how to use ~50% of the feature set.

          But let's face it, the majority of users are better off with WordPad... where there's less chance of fucking things up. They never venture beyond the first ribbon tab.

          We use G-suite at work, there's no pissing about passing files, we can edit documents in real time, there's history, permissions, and 95% of Word documents are... "readable" (if you want pixel perfect, use PDF).

          Me? I write my documents in markdown or html, like I should have been from the start.

          1. Camilla Smythe Silver badge

            But let's face it, the majority of users are better off with WordPad...

            But let's face it, the majority of users are better off with Write...

            FTFY

          2. P. Lee Silver badge

            Alternatives to both

            My company has a large number of non-digitally-enabled users who are planned to require occasional connectivity. In the old device-cal based world, this was no problem - a few shared machines was fine. Now with O365, those costs are going to blow out massively.

            I looked at WPS Office. I tried loading up an IT detailed design to see how the word processor handled it. It was nearly perfect. The only problem I could see was that a "section break" appeared to insert an extra page break too. The spreadsheet also handled our awful 24k+ row spreadsheet no worse than Excel. Edrawsoft appears to provide a decent Vision alternative. These were all running in a Linux VM, without even base Windows providing GUI support. It was all very impressive and makes LibreOffice look pretty awful. Well worth a look if you want to cut costs while keeping the MSOffice look and feel and they give you Mac/Linux (some IOS/Android) support too.

            My inclination is to push for a site-deal with these companies, roll them into the SOE and make users justify MSOffice if they want it.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          The accounts department is going to need Excel. Calculating lease discounts and interest; interest rate swaps, currency swaps etc on Google Sheets is not going to be fun.

          Only if they're lazy and stupid. I come from a finance background, and have three decades experience of using spreadsheets in a finance or related context, and there's nothing that a finance professional or accountant need that can't be readily done with a very simple spreadsheet.

          The increasing complexity of Excel, the availability of "functions", macros and pivot tables hasn't improved finance teams, it has impoverished them. There's a whole generation of lazy accounting oiks who think that finance is about all those Excel fripperies - its the IT equivalent of depending on Github to do your job.

        3. Lars Silver badge
          Happy

          Exell or not with Excel

          "The accounts department is going to need Excel."

          I might be wrong, but I seriously doubt large companies use a spread sheet application for their accounts, I hope they have something more reliable for those tasks. Then again it could explain quite a few "problems" if they do.

          Sometimes I have this feeling that even Microsoft has to, eventually, start from scratch with something, perhaps Google has an advantage there, a fresher start, sort of.

          The link provided by this article regarding the Boeing/Airbus kerfuffle (not to mention Bombardier) is from 4 September 2017 "Boeing declares victory in Airbus subsidies dispute".

          However there is also this, and it is a separate but rather similar case, not reported on ElReg, and is from January 29 2018. "Bombardier just bested Boeing in a trade dispute between the U.S. and Canada. Here's what you need to know.".

          https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2018/01/29/bombardier-just-bested-boeing-in-a-trade-dispute-between-u-s-and-canada-heres-what-you-need-to-know/?utm_term=.3a031fb1110a

          My point is that if ElReg wants to report on this never ending saga on how companies love competition, then keep us informed.

          PS. also the second link is outdated as Airbus actually got some very well needed new orders.

          1. Timo

            Re: Exell or not with Excel

            A large company will have a dedicated accounting system, but as soon as the beancounters need to make sense out of some info they'll dump it into an Excel file and massage it into a report.

            Probably not the best tool for the job, but the one that people can get around on.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Exell or not with Excel

              dump it into an Excel file

              9/10, that'll be a CSV file.

            2. eionmac

              Re: Exell or not with Excel

              Many accounting suites (even at major types) dump *only to excel*. [N1] They do not dump to any other installed spreadsheet program. Thus work around is a comma separated data dump and then reopened in spreadsheet of choice to sort out reports.

              [N1] lazyness in coding and assuming all desks run MS Office software.

          2. katrinab Silver badge

            Re: Exell or not with Excel

            "I might be wrong, but I seriously doubt large companies use a spread sheet application for their accounts, I hope they have something more reliable for those tasks. Then again it could explain quite a few "problems" if they do."

            You'd be surprised.

            Yes the basic ledger entries will be on SAP or similar, but if you need to decide which of a choice of different financial instruments is most suitable for your purposes, SAP isn't going to do that. Working out the numbers to put into SAP, where it is more complicated than entering the number from the invoice / bank statement; you probably need Excel.

            Then you have Group Reporting / Consolidation, where you have to take the numbers from your different divisions around the world, adjust the numbers to reflect what they would be had the local office complied with laws in the head office country rather than the local office country, put them all together, eliminate transactions and balances between the different offices; you are never going to get a computer program that can cope with that.

            1. oldcoder

              Re: Exell or not with Excel

              "...adjust the numbers to reflect what they would be..."

              "...eliminate transactions and balances between the different offices..."

              Ah. You mean "lie about the data".

              I guess that would be easier without the back end validation.

              1. katrinab Silver badge

                Re: Exell or not with Excel

                '"...eliminate transactions and balances between the different offices..."

                Ah. You mean "lie about the data".'

                No, if Airbus Broughton ships a load of wings to Airbus Sevilla, then Airbus Broughton will report that as a sale to HMRC, and Airbus Sevilla will report it as a purchase to Agencia Tributaria, but when you are preparing the group accounts, it is just a shipment of parts from one building to another, so you have to take both the sale and purchase out of the accounts.

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Exell or not with Excel

                Good grief - we've got an SAP apologist!

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Exell or not with Excel

                  >Good grief - we've got an SAP apologist!

                  You mean a SAPologist, don't you?

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Gdocs is perfectly capable of this. If anything, the collaborative templates will make it easier.

          It's totally untrue that gdocs isn't suitable for "real" office work. It's more to do with some people not being capable of adapting to change. Those sort of people are generally the company dead wood anyway....

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "It's totally untrue that gdocs isn't suitable for "real" office work."

            Depends on how you define suitable. GS is in almost every respect significantly inferior to Office 365.

            "It's more to do with some people not being capable of adapting to change. Those sort of people are generally the company dead wood anyway...."

            Actually they tend to be real power users - highly skilled people that matter.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              > Actually they tend to be real power users - highly skilled people that matter.

              The highly skilled people that I work with know enough about office tools to be able to run the CSV export function, so they can do whatever they need to do with Python, R, Matlab, Node, etc.

              Conversely, the "power users" are those who will give you a floor plan drawing made in Excel or copy and paste a JPEG into a Word document for no imaginable reason.

              Your experience may of course vary.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                "The highly skilled people that I work with know enough about office tools to be able to run the CSV export function, so they can do whatever they need to do with Python, R, Matlab, Node, etc."

                And those that I work with write / compile those type of things to plug directly into Excel as an addin or VBA call and wouldnt dream of unnecessary exports to a CSV file.

            2. Chemical Bob
              Windows

              "Actually they tend to be real power users - highly skilled people that matter."

              Ah, yes, people who only know where the buttons are in one particular office suite...

        5. CliveLondon

          Password protection??

          Maybe Big G will do some basic stuff...like allow me to password protect individual spreadsheets & docs.

        6. This post has been deleted by its author

      4. Jack of Shadows Silver badge

        Same for this engineer as well. Being able to readily communicate between the Line Animals and myself is just the perfect pitch to my ears. Toss the logistics people into this conversation is sweet music.

        Personally, I've got all the packages/suites you mentioned and far, far more. Given my engagement with multiple firms, usually a one-off, I'm constantly seeing different formats. A full third of my software is just to enable me to work with those constantly changing formats. G-Suite is really very nice in this regard. The number of times I've used Office, yeah it's installed, can be measured with one thumb. Not that I have any love for Google, just that they get on with and have done so since the beginning.

      5. Mattknz1

        CAD CAM

        AutoCAD can datalink and reference Excel spreadsheets. A rather handy feature, last I was working on it this was not possible with anything other than Office, may have changed since?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: CAD CAM

          "AutoCAD can datalink and reference Excel spreadsheets"

          Yes, but what has this got to do with designing aeroplanes?

          Airbus uses CATIA.

          (I remember when one of my kids graduated and went to work for an engineering consultancy. Not long after I heard about them training on CAD. "Is that AutoCAD?" I asked. "What's that? Never heard of it.")

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: CAD CAM

            > I remember when one of my kids graduated and went to work for an engineering consultancy. Not long after I heard about them training on CAD. "Is that AutoCAD?" I asked. "What's that? Never heard of it."

            You do not mention what is your kid's educational background. If it is engineering, I should certainly hope he would *at least* have heard of it. If it just a tool, but a rather important one.

            If that is not the case, your country has serious educational deficiencies and I would hazard, not a very bright future.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "So we are going to give them a crappy feature limited office package"

      Sounds like you haven't used it

      .

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Sounds like you haven't used it"

        Sounds like YOU haven't used it. There are countless features that GS doesnt have that O365 does.

        1. Ledswinger Silver badge

          There are countless features that GS doesnt have that O365 does.

          That's a statement of fact not an argument. Just like the statement "O365 is bloated with countless features that the world doesn't need, and that 99% of users don;t know how to use properly".

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            99% of users haven't got a clue of what their software can do, they've just been left to "pick it up" as best they can. Primarily because management doesn't see any value in training its workers to make best use of the (expensive) tools they've paid for.

            In large corporations, the amount of waste this leads to beggars belief.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "That's a statement of fact not an argument. "

            It's both. The average user probably only does use 1% of the features in Office, but GS is so limited and lacking in features in comparison that most enterprise users will notice and will find it a painful experience to use.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Like??

          As with anything, different products have different pros and cons. Gsuite has many advantages over office, specifically in collaboration, security, management.

          Part of the problem is that many people assume the free offing is the same as the paid business offering.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "Gsuite has many advantages over office, specifically in collaboration,"

            Gsuite is roughly equivalent to O365 for document collaboration. However its significantly inferior for unified comms collaboration.

            "security, management."

            O365 is so far ahead on these that you have to use a telescope to see GS in the distance behind.

            "Part of the problem is that many people assume the free offing is the same as the paid business offering."

            Nope. We are talking about GS enterprise.

        3. Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge
          Joke

          > There are countless features

          Countless? Not another Excel bug....?

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          > There are countless features that GS doesnt have that O365 does.

          Out of curiosity, how often do you make a purchasing decision based on a tally of the number of "features" of A vs B?

        5. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "There are countless features that GS doesnt have that O365 does."

          Meaningless features. That is MSFT's MO, let's add another button for the sake of saying we have another button whether anyone needs it or not. G Suite is simple, easy to use.

          It is actually a lot like Lotus vs Microsoft in the 90s. Lotus had way more functionality, but Microsoft was easier to use and what people preferred to use at home. Now Microsoft is Lotus.

        6. DrBed

          "There are countless features that GS doesnt have that O365 does."

          Countless ribbons instead tabs?

          Actually, "countless" (but mostly useless) features are the reason why I'm avoiding MS Office/365.

          Still, I'm missing Clippy...not.

        7. Gary Bickford

          Features not fixes

          I once read an interview with the then-manager of Excel development. He said they basically didn’t bother fixing bugs - “nobody will stop using Excel because of a bug, and they’ve already bought it.”. But if even one person asked for a feature they figured there were hundreds of others that also wanted it. So all of their development effort was adding features, almost none fixing the _many_ (as we all know) bugs.

    3. julian_n

      But after using "proper" apps like Outlook and Word, Office 365 is a bag of sh1te as well.

      What is a bigger surprise is that Airbus are putting their data on US servers within the grasp of the NSA - I guess they don't mind if they get passed to Boeing.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "But after using "proper" apps like Outlook and Word, Office 365 is a bag of sh1te as well."

        Office 365 uses the exact same "proper apps". Its just the licensing thats different.

        1. tiggity Silver badge

          @AC

          I think what @julian_n meant was the O365 web versions of Excel etc. not the local exes.

          The "web" Excel is just awful (and that's for really simple stuff like timesheets)

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "I think what @julian_n meant was the O365 web versions of Excel etc. not the local exes.!"

            Which no one uses. As you can install the full Office suite included in the cost of O365.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Which no one uses. As you can install the full Office suite included in the cost of O365.

              Only if your using Windows and have local admin rights.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                "Only if your using Windows"

                You're. And that's 99% of corporate desktops covered.

                "and have local admin rights."

                Nope - users don't need local admin rights. You can deploy it remotely via a GPO.

            2. rmason Silver badge

              No.

              There are tiered costs for o365. the cheapest allows the online (terrible) versions only. Only with the higher cost one do you get the downloadable version of full office 2016.

              365 essentials Vs 365 business premium

              People are getting confused and therefore comparing apples to oranges.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                "There are tiered costs for o365. the cheapest allows the online (terrible) versions only. "

                We are comparing to Gsuite Enterprise. Which is $25 a month. So the closest match is Office E3 at $20 a month.

                If you did want web apps, then 365 essentials is half the price of Google Suite standard at $5 a month. And the Web Apps are no more terrible than Google's ones - in fact they are generally more responsive - you can use them for free here:

                https://products.office.com/en-US/office-online/documents-spreadsheets-presentations-office-online

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                >>Only with the higher cost one do you get the downloadable version of full office 2016.

                There are several enterprise tiers of O365. Only E1 doesn't include a full local install. Airbus is a large Enterprise so if they went for O365 it would need to be at least E3. Which is still cheaper than GSuite Enterprise.

              3. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Orifice 2016

                Based on my (and my coworkers) experience of Orifice 2016, 365 must be hell on Earth, given that 2016 is so crap

          2. julian_n

            Correct. Local Apps OK - web apps (365) bad!

            1. rmason Silver badge

              It's still office 265, just two different licences/costs.

              One allows online only, one the full office suite.

              You're still using office 365 with all the relevant pros and cons.

        2. rmason Silver badge

          Ac is correct.

          again it seems people familiar with neither product are chipping in.

          Unless your company is unbelievably cheap and you get online only stuff you get the full office 2016 suite. "proper apps".

          You get word, outlook, excel etc etc all fully installed locally on your machine.

          Unless you've only got the (much cheaper) "essentials" licence. That's not a failing of o365, it's you/your company not realising you need the more expensive licence. (business prem).

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "Office 365 uses the exact same "proper apps". Its just the licensing thats different."

          The difference between Orifice 365 and 2010 is staggering. 365 had plummeted my productivity and that of my colleagues. It sucks worse than hard vacuum.

          Bring back 2003

      2. fozzy73

        How would that be different with 365? And Google now has three Datacenters in Europe and is working on a localization solution.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "And Google now has three Datacenters in Europe and is working on a localization solution."

          Lol. Versus 12 for Microsoft. And a localisation and secure bring your own encryption keys solution that works now.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Google DC's in Europe don't matter

            IF the current bill going through US Congress and Senate gets signed by Trump.

            That will give the US TLA's unfettered access to ANY, repeat ANY data that is stored anywhere in the world in DC's owned by US Companies.

            That includes all that lovely cloud kit operated by Google, Amazon, Microsoft, IBM, Rackspace, HP etc etc etc

            Your data is theirs and there is SFA that you can do about it.

      3. Ben1892

        Exactly what I was thinking, G Suite is pretty good but and one of the reasons the business case for it didn't stack up where I work was they had no EU data residency. The other one being that we needed integrated IP voice that you can actually phone PSTN people with too - if you add that ( 3rd party supplied) feature on to the GfW bill then a M365 with Skype for Business Plus Cal works out cheaper

    4. hplasm Silver badge
      Gimp

      "My money says at least 10% of them will still need a proper local MS Office install"

      Then it's not your money - it's Microsoft's.

      You just haven't bent down and handed it over yet.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "My money says at least 10% of them will still need a proper local MS Office install"

        "Then it's not your money - it's Microsoft's."

        Its cheaper than GS!

    5. RobertLongshaft

      This guy knows his onions.

      How many times have we heard this story?

      3 years and they'll be back in one of Microsoft's lovely Enterprise Agreements, my guess would be as part of a settlement at the end of an audit.

      1. oldcoder

        So that would be the MS mafia going "Nice company you have there... too bad we are going to do an anal audit of everything. So shutdown everything while we check, or we have an alterative deal for you..."

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "going to do an anal audit"

          Are you confusing Microsoft with Elton John?

    6. Zippy's Sausage Factory

      Hi AC!

      How's the weather in Redmond today?

    7. Notwork

      I work for a global company that's O365 though and through, a lot of people I work with have setup work specific google accounts and work outside the company managed system. Even Word has become so complicated it's just easier to write a doc in markdown. What O365 does have going for it is history, using Word and Excel is a default skill anyone who is bellow retirement age just has but with things like google docs that's not going to last much longer, my kids use google docs all the time and there is no reason to frighten them with the maize like MS word menu.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "my kids use google docs all the time "

        Mine only use O365 and their school IT syllabus is based on it. Just like most are - parents want their kids learning something that will actually be relevant to a UK job.

        "with things like google docs that's not going to last much longer"

        Seems unlikely to be relevant seeing at Google Suite market share already peaked and is now dropping due to widespread migration to O365.

        1. Tom 38 Silver badge
          Joke

          Clearly O365 is so amazing that AC here doesn't actually have to do any work, just post here every 15 minutes about how great it is.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            > Clearly O365 is so amazing that AC here doesn't actually have to do any work, just post here every 15 minutes about how great it is.

            Ever occurred to you that there might be more than one AC in a given thread? :-)

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          > Mine only use O365 and their school IT syllabus is based on it. Just like most are - parents want their kids learning something that will actually be relevant to a UK job.

          There is so much truth in that comment that it almost eclipses just how misguided the concept itself is.

          > Mine only use O365 and their school IT syllabus is based on it. Just like most are

          True. So as a result, those kids know "Excel" but have no clue what a spreadsheet is; they know "Word" but never heard of a word processor; etc.

          > kids learning something that will actually be relevant to a UK job.

          True. That's because what's left of UK industry is basically administration and services. By way of example, not long ago in Austria I was a witness to a heated discussion about the intricacies of Matlab where one of the parties was a 17 year old (school project thing) and the other was, I shit you not, a media studies graduate. Fascinating.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Yeah, what we need is more dumbing down of IT skills. Not.

    8. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      M$ shills are working overtime, to fill this comment thread with fud about competitors. Those paid posters should get banned.

      From an objective point of view, both Google Suite and LibreOffice are real competitors. And rightfully more and more, are moving away from the slurp that Win10 and O365/O2016 are.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "And rightfully more and more, are moving away from the slurp that Win10 and O365/O2016 are."

        Windows 10 overtook Windows 7 in desktop market share last month, and Windows overall desktop market share is pretty stable so no they are not. Most enterprises have already started moving to Windows 10 & O365 or are planning to.

    9. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      On the basis of my own experience with Orifice 365 I must say it is shite

    10. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      G Suite Enterprise, $25, is more comparable with E5, which is $35.

      G Suite Business is $10 as compared to $20 for E3.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "G Suite Enterprise, $25, is more comparable with E5,"

        Nope, E3 does pretty much everthing Gsuite enterprise does and lots more. E5 includes things like Power BI, a full enterprise telephony solution and advanced threat protection that GSuite doesnt have in any version.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "advanced threat protection that GSuite doesnt have in any version."

          G Suite has ATP in the Enterprise version.

          It isn't unlimited rights PowerBI in E5.

          Microsoft's telephony solution is a joke.

          People buy E5, to the extent they buy it, for the security features... same as G Suite Enterprise.

  2. OffBeatMammal

    As someone who has experienced both, good luck with the GS roll-out. There are so many half-implemented things in GS that Office just gets right (especially around email, calendaring, and the GAL) that you end up having to use a mess of third party tools to try and plug into GSuite to emulate... badly.

    And the actual Gmail clients (on web and mobile) are severely lacking when it comes to Corporate tye communication ... if you have a mail conversation threaded beyond a couple deep it just falls apart. I've ended up getting a personal Office365 subscription so I can get the full GSuite integration in Outlook and use Nine on iOS/Android

    also, the majority of the article reads like a press release

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      If I had a pound for every time GMail has magically and inexplicably recombined separate threads of emails that were long ago split, resulting in customers seeing our real and less-than-flattering opinions about them, I'd have about eight quid.

      18 months I've worked here. Outlook could be a pain but at least it was never surprising.

      1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

        "If I had a pound for every time GMail has magically and inexplicably recombined separate threads of emails that were long ago split, resulting in customers seeing our real and less-than-flattering opinions about them, I'd have about eight quid."

        That argues for a better system of separation of internal and external emails, regardless of the client used. Before widespread email, discipline in controlling customer-facing communication was taken for granted. Relying on ad hoc procedures is not smart.

        I believe it took the FBI an enormously long time to move to email because of precisely the problem of security zones and rings which the FBI take enormously seriously.

        (slightly OT but relevant I once was in a company where for obvious reasons access to printers in use by HR was physically controlled. But they used print servers. They were not best pleased when shown that a simple SNMP client could read the job list of certain makes of printers, so everybody in the IT department could read the titles of jobs like "IT Redundancy Planning March.xlsx". How do you fix this? Replace the printers with less garrulous ones is really the only sensible answer, because trying to teach people not to give documents names that give stuff away is impossible.)

      2. julian_n

        Yes. I had Outlook 365 do something similar to me on Wednesday - luckily I was not rude in the e-mail someone ought not to have seen.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        resulting in customers seeing our real and less-than-flattering opinions about them,

        Dont put anything in a mail, or any company system, that you don't want HR to be reading later. Like when they are compiling a little book for determining the costs of your upcoming business trip to "New Opportunities Land"!

        Rants on email have been known significantly to lower the value of ones exit settlement - as at least two of my former colleagues have just recently discovered.

      4. DrBed

        "Outlook could be a pain but at least it was never surprising."

        ROFL... sure, if you're "expect the unexpected" MS-tamed already.

        Here, I don't even need to mention compatibility problems between versions off Outlook / Windows; just google for MS official "Fixes or workarounds for recent issues in Outlook for Windows", focus at 2018 and count how often is [WORKAROUND] vs [FIXED].

        So, it is more like "NO-body expects the Spanish Inquisition!"

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Joke right?

      This is a joke right?

      The ENTIRE Office 365 suite of applications is full of half-baked poorly made software.

      At least with Google you have the easy option of integrating with high quality 3rd party tools, using single sign on, when something doesn't meet your needs.

      And SharePoint.... Oh dear... It's an absolute mess of a product. And don't get me started on Teams.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Joke right?

        "The ENTIRE Office 365 suite of applications is full of half-baked poorly made software."

        Well it's the best Office suite in existence by some distance. I don't think many would dispute that GS is way behind.

        "At least with Google you have the easy option of integrating with high quality 3rd party tools,"

        But you don't. There is no local software to integrate with. Want to connect say a spreadsheet to your database? You are screwed. And Microsoft's cloud integration options are way more extensive than Google's.

        "using single sign on"

        Which with Azure AD / AD Connect is miles ahead of Google's thrown together offering.

        "And SharePoint.... Oh dear... It's an absolute mess of a product."

        Again - it's the best on the market. Google doesn't have anything to match it.

        1. MrChristoph

          Re: Joke right?

          "Which with Azure AD / AD Connect is miles ahead of Google's thrown together offering."

          Most decent web-based services online have an option to sign in with a Google account. How often do you see a "Sign in with microsoft(or whatever)" button? Practically never. Google have had this problem nailed for years.

          "Again - it's the best on the market. Google doesn't have anything to match it."

          There are many project management tools that are leagues ahead of the shoddy sharepoint experience. Basecamp and ApolloHQ are some examples, but there are many more. Both of these have the option to sign in with your Google account and have Google integrations (google docs, etc). Unsurprisingly, they do not do a similar thing with a Microsoft integration.

          Many office users are trapped in a cave totally unaware of these superior solutions. It's a shame really.

          "And Microsoft's cloud integration options are way more extensive than Google's."

          True, from a purely box-checking point of view they do have more integrations, but the integrations are usually significantly worse than how other companies will integrate. Microsoft Teams is a good example of this- from a feature point of view it looks like it can compete with Slack, it has plenty of half-assed integrations, but when you actually use it it's a different story. Slack have some of the best paid programmers ensuring that Slack is a slick effort. Microsoft Teams is really quite shocking. I tried it at our last company and it's just not reliable at doing the one thing it should: ensuring the user you are chatting to sees the message- often it's safer just to resort to using email. Some companies have completely replaced their internal email with slack- this just wouldn't be feasible with Microsoft Teams. And Teams is one of their better products!

          Almost everything Microsoft have done in office 365 is half-assed. The only decent things are: Word, Email, and Calendar functionality.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Joke right?

            "Most decent web-based services online have an option to sign in with a Google account. "

            That's not single sign on. That's multiple use of the same sign-on. Single signon is transparent and automatic. And pretty much any SaaS you might want to sign onto say - for example Sales-Force - will support Microsoft SSO.

            "There are many project management tools that are leagues ahead of the shoddy sharepoint experience."

            Because SharePoint isn't a Project Management tool. Microsoft Project Server is though and it's also a long way ahead of most of the competition. As an Enterprise programme manager I have never heard of Basecamp and ApolloHQ - so I'm guessing they are not enterprise grade solutions like MS Project, Innotas, HPE PPM, Clarizen or Clarity that I am familiar with.

            "True, from a purely box-checking point of view they do have more integrations, but the integrations are usually significantly worse than how other companies will integrate"

            Nope - with Office you have local plugins with API level integration that's simply not possible with Google. Try running say Condeco (market leading meeting room / front of house booking system) with Google Apps, lol. Or Sales Force. Or numerous other market leading enterprise tools.

            They limitations with Google's products are everywhere - for instance max 25 people in a hangouts meeting? Surface Hub pisses all over Chrome Box. etc. etc.

            "Microsoft Teams is a good example of this- from a feature point of view it looks like it can compete with Slack"

            So much so that Slack have had to take to copying features from Teams like threads. Later this year, Microsoft going to add all the functionality of Skype for Business into Teams and there will be no comparison.

            "Microsoft Teams is really quite shocking. I tried it at our last company and it's just not reliable at doing the one thing it should: ensuring the user you are chatting to sees the message"

            Only if they turn off or ignore alerts. Otherwise it works perfectly - we already moved to from Slack to Teams at the beginning of this year as it's effectively free with O365.

            "The only decent things are: Word, Email, and Calendar functionality."

            Excel is miles better than Sheets, Skype is way better than Meet, Google presentation software is a joke, and I don't think they even have a SharePoint product. Not to mention that O365 performance is much better as it's local, and if you loose your internet connection O365 still works as it's a local install, whereas with Google Suite you are stuffed. Google is also utterly lacking in the DRM and encryption management space compared to the many options of Office. The best you can do with Google is send an ACLd URL! And their compliance capabilities are laughable.

  3. Sauraus

    GSuite is not enterprise ready

    As someone that has been dealing with GSuite for the past 18 months, I can only say good luck Luc.

    Luc is absolutely right when he says that GSuite was made with sharing/collaboration in mind, problem is that as an enterprise you still need controls which are lacking or difficult to use with GSuite. Office365 is clearly more mature when it comes to security than GSuite and I'd think that a company like AirBus would prefer that.

    1. Paul Matencio

      Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

      What do you mean by not enterprise ready? what can´t you do with G suite? could you be more explicit? I know that I can do a lot thing with G suite that I don´t know how to do with Office. For other people, it could be the other way around.

      1. Corporate Scum

        Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

        Set a 90-day password expiration policy without resorting to scripting or a 3rd party tool?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

          Ever thought why they don't expire passwords?

          https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/articles/problems-forcing-regular-password-expiry

          Don't you use 2FA?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

            "Ever thought why they don't expire passwords?"

            That's not the policy of most corporates. Hence why it's not enterprise ready in that regard.

        2. Floydian Slip

          Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

          But what IS the point of changing passwords every 30/60/90 [delete as appropriate] days?

          I know you'll say "security" but what does it achieve other than pain, forgotten passwords, incremented passwords etc. If you are targeted, it doesn't matter how frequently you change passwords, it'll be your overall security that's under attack.

          Having to change a password regularly only serves to annoy employees

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

            I can sum that point up in one word: Compliance

            I love Google Authenticator, but it won't let me dodge a regulatory requirement, or make a policy set by lobbyists and lawyers stay up to date with current best practices. I just have to deal with the glares in the hallway after a reset goes off. Recommending better "Best-Practice" is good, not supporting current practice is, well, amateurish. And that problem has been around since before the best practices changed.

            Email lists, contact management, and all other sorts of rough edges in G-suite, especially at scale. If I imported 2 years of old mail into Gmail, I'd have to log in to each account, and mark it as "Read" in batches of what 50 messages at a time? The G-Suite experience has been a lot of little things that all start to stack up.

            I'm not saying don't use it, just don't mistake it for a stand alone replacement, or that it doesn't cause it's own pain points. One of which is supporting requirements that can only be changed by people outside of Google. So no, not "Security"

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

              So no, not "Security"

              Better stick with Microsoft, then.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

              If I imported 2 years of old mail into Gmail, I'd have to log in to each account, and mark it as "Read" in batches of what 50 messages at a time?

              Gmail lets you select all emails in a search, and apply an action to all of them.

            3. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

              I love Google Authenticator, but it won't let me dodge a regulatory requirement,

              Who is forcing you to use Google Authenticator? For 2FA with our google apps we use yubikeys, other hardware tokens are available.

              We migrated from Domino (most users) and Exchange (some sales), and no-one had issues with email being marked unread. One guy had an issue because he had 2.3 million emails, and it broke our Notes exporter - might also have explained why Domino was struggling..

              Our company address book went over perfectly. All meeting room bookings and resources went over with no issues.

              Sysadmins have typically been a Windows skillset, I wonder if this "Microsoft is the only way" BS expressed here is because of fear of reskilling - easier to just argue that the way you know is the best and any other route won't work.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: GSuite is not enterprise ready

      The collaborative editing really shines in team projects, BUT the pitfalls aren't really with Docs. It's a mistake to think of the G-Suite as the Google Docs web apps. Even if Airbus is supplying copies of Office to the people who really NEED it(and as a Multinational Aerospace company they better have a line item for them already, ) they will still be hitting pain points with user and account management, backups, regulatory compliance, etc. Also, while some claim that Airbus is so large that they can just force all their suppliers to play ball switch to their way of doing things, I don't see that as anything other than a trap. You will end up with suppliers that induce errors transcribing contracts and documents, and customers who have the upper hand in the power dynamic and are quite resistant to change(Looking at you D.O.D.)

      Then Google will come along and start changing things. In the middle of the day the whole global organization may just not be able to send email, because someone in California had one Lassi to many replaced the compose email screen with a picture of window, that looks like a window, but doen't quite act like a window, and on some browsers draws the send button four feet off the right side of the screen.

      The someone in accounting will create a sheet with all of the bank account info, and put it on Global share.

      I can deal with these issues in the SMB space, but I'm not betting on an airplane built and maintained by an outfit relying on Google Apps. Office isn't really better per say, it just presents different problems, but if Office and Outlook are your problem, G-Suite isn't a solution, just an alternate tool. I hope that their current CIO has the rest of the plan covered, or his coworkers will probably use him for engine testing.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Qantas, for crying out loud. Where the hell did you get Quantus?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Maybe the Office365 'Spul Chuka' cannot handle 'Strine' :) :)

      or

      Queensland and Northern Territory Urial Services ???

      [Could be Possible, lots of Sheep in OZ :) :) ]

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Oops Sorry :(

        I appear to have offended the 'fine people of Oz' !!!

        (Although I have found they tend to give much more 'enthusiastically' than they ever receive and take/give it all in jest.)

        Maybe it was MS ....... that has a certain 'ring of conviction' about it !!! :) :)

        (Unfortunately, in this case I cannot apologise to MS as they have not apologised for Win10 & its neverending 'joys' yet. Their faux pas is much much greater than mine. !!!)

        :) :) ;)

    2. Trilkhai
      Pint

      Qantas, for crying out loud. Where the hell did you get Quantus?

      The same place that the AC above you got “per say” instead of “per se”, most likely…or at least that's my theory.

      Have a H2G2 buffer against the effect of reading comments--------------->

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        In retrospect, pretty obvious, Quantus is the Reg being the Reg and trolling us (Aussies) and Qantas for the spelling of their brand. I should have remembered what I was reading!!

        Though in my defense the leading local tabloid just had an article about Putin's new missile that was tested "58,000 km over Russia". So I'm conditioned for editorial weakness.

  5. ShelLuser

    Well, let's just hope...

    Their Internet connection never fails. And I mean never because if it does then there will be plenty of people who can't access their administration anymore. Doesn't sound like the brightest of ideas to me.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well, let's just hope...

      When the internet's off, there's no work done anyway - no matter what office suite you use.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Well, let's just hope...

        "When the internet's off, there's no work done anyway"

        Only if you do your work on someone else's computer. If you don't it's quite likely that more work gets done. Unless you count browsing el Reg and watching cat videos as work.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Well, let's just hope...

        "When the internet's off, there's no work done anyway - no matter what office suite you use."

        Speak for yourself. I would say more work gets done here on Office 365 when the Internet is down! At least Offic3 365 has a local install and still works in that case. Unlike with GS.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    LOL

    I can say with some certainty that they'll be back to O365 within 24 months. For many, many, reasons.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: LOL

      You didn't even read the article properly. They're not moving from 365. They evaluated it.

      Are you aware of their criteria? Know each product well enough to risk time, money, and reputation, with a decision? I guess you've also spoken to their departments, analysed their current work-flow... then "LOLed"

      So what are these "many many" reasons?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: LOL

        They'll be using both within 24 months.

        In a technical environment, there is nothing to touch Excel.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: LOL

          Agreed, as a professional numbers guy, who's had the sad experience of being forced to use alternatives on occasion, Excel is Life.

    2. DrBed

      Re: LOL

      "I can say with some certainty that they'll be back to O365 within 24 months. For many, many, reasons."

      Go ahead, tell them all!

      Tell them that you're still waiting for Delta Airlines and General Electric returning to Windows RT, crying. You stupd, stupd Airbus...

  7. Throatwarbler Mangrove Silver badge

    In this thread ...

    Microsoft fanboys vs. Google fanboys. I can't even . . . and I don't say that lightly.

    1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: In this thread ...

      @Throatwarbler Mangrove

      Microsoft fanboys vs. Google fanboys. I can't even . . . and I don't say that lightly.

      Apple fanboys are in a huff as they have not been invited to the party

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: In this thread ...

        Not invited because _Numbers_

    2. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      Re: In this thread ...

      "Microsoft fanboys vs. Google fanboys. I can't even . . . and I don't say that lightly."

      Nothing new. See the big endian/little endian controversy in Gulliver's Travels, and it's nothing to do with ISAs.

      It's a source of considerable pleasure to me that I have always done stuff sufficiently technical that the issue of which office suite to use for reports and the like has never been of any great interest. But the number of times I have had to issue a big sigh and explain to someone why their spreadsheet could not be turned into an application easily and quickly is rather high. I don't hate spreadsheets or Microsoft Office but I have entertained slightly murderous thoughts to some of their users.

      Auditability, what's that? Schema, what's that?

      This cell is sometimes a datum and sometimes a formula.This sheet contains several different data models, I don't want to have to run four different SQL queries over the same dataset just to populate one page. Yes I know it works for you but when there are several hundred users doing the same thing at the same time...no we can't just download a complete copy of the database to every user. Just keep paying me and I'll see what I can do.

      Friday rant over

  8. Lorribot

    So they bought it because it looks good, just as well because it's likely to cost them more to support it and manage their relationship with Google which as everyone knows when it come to negotiation, comprimise or anything it is a one way street than just sticking Office on a users desktop.

    I know this from experience. I ahve also seen service interupions and random glitches on Google servers that sees one user ok and the person next to them suffering extreme latency, but have no way to have a conversation with Google about it.

    Good luck, they are brave.

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Given the choice

      I wouldn't touch MS Office 365 with somebody else's bargepole, because it falls over if you vaguely glance in its direction, and an annoyingly large range of features are either missing or broken.

      Airbus clearly made this decision because O365's collaboration "features" are worse than horrifically broken, to the point where using them will cause data loss.

      G Suite is at least intended for collaboration and does actually work.

      I'd prefer a local application because Internet connections are neither perfect nor always available, but MS don't want to sell anyone those licences anymore anyway.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Given the choice

        G Suite is at least intended for collaboration and does actually work.

        It's very laggy when you are collaborating across the world. Stuff just takes too long.

        1. Anonymous Bullard

          Re: Given the choice

          It's very laggy when you are collaborating across the world. Stuff just takes too long.

          Is it laggy because it's laggy, or because it's going across the world? Is there a faster alternative?

          I'm in a remote team, edited documents while skyping, and haven't noticed any more lag than I'd expect. I can see their typing "seconds" later.

          It's not like I have to dodge their bullet points.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Given the choice

        "I wouldn't touch MS Office 365 with somebody else's bargepole, because it falls over"

        In the rare event that it does fall over, at least you can carry on working with O365 with a local install. With GS you are screwed.

        "because O365's collaboration "features" are worse than horrifically broken, to the point where using them will cause data loss."

        Rubbish. There are no dats loss issues - you just made that up. The Microsoft collaboration tools around unified comms beat Google hands down, and the collaborative editing is equivalent.

    2. I3N
      Boffin

      Iridium ...

      ... so cool to see the flashes!

  9. ecofeco Silver badge

    Notes<Office<G Suite

    Office is to G Suite what Note is to Office: obsolete and unwieldy.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Notes<Office<G Suite

      "obsolete and unwieldy."

      That must be why MS Office has 90% market share versus Google Apps on circa 6% and falling?

      1. ridley

        Re: Notes<Office<G Suite

        The trouble with going with market share as a guide to quality is that you end up with the conclusion that

        1) Microsoft make the best operating system in the world

        2) The Sun is the finest newspaper in the UK.

        well you get the picture.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Notes<Office<G Suite

          "2) The Sun is the finest newspaper in the UK."

          It was until they ditched page 3.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Notes<Office<G Suite

          It doesn't have to be the best, but it dies have to be popular to be financially viable.

          What happens when Google decide to pull the plug on G Suite? It's not as if they don't have a reputation for withdrawing product support at a whim.

      2. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: Notes<Office<G Suite

        Market share is not indicative of whether or not the thing is obsolete and unwieldy.

  10. Rusty 1

    Frame

    I've used Frame products extensively - Builder and Maker - to great success. For producing and maintaining multi-thousand page documents, including engineering diagrams, in a variety of formats, including HTML, there really isn't much comparison with the toys offered by Microsoft and Google, cloud or not. With the openly specced MIF format, they are also easly generated from your own sources.

    So that's the documentation sorted. Now, the calenders, spreadsheets, wizzy C-level graphics to sort.

  11. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    “We want to force the organisation to make the change and drive a true transformation, and not just do a tool upgrade.”

    Forget about the choice of tool. This is the sort of verbiage to worry about.

    “let people go to the information that they need for their jobs… almost the opposite from an environment that is based on email where you receive whatever it is that others decide you can receive.”

    Nice. Plausible deniability. No email with your name on the distribution list telling you not to do something you just did or vice versa.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The biggest problem I've seen with things like O365 and GSuite is that search is a shit way to find documents. You cannot rely on it to find stuff, simply because it's impossible to have a search string comprehensive enough to describe what it is you're looking for. Especially when you're as large as an organisation like Airbus who, no doubt, have millions of documents. Trying finding a specific document in amongst all that. "Wings" is not going to be a useful term in a search string...

    Without a proper business process being used to control documents, it will rapidly lead to duplication. It simply becomes easier to write something again than to exhaustively trawl through the thousand search results that your best effort of a search string has returned. Duplication is a waste, and potentially a legal quagmire (i.e. if they end up saying different things...).

    Even quite small companies that I've seen use G Suite and O365 (yes, they've tried both) have had enormous problems as a result of a lack of business process controlling storage and status of documents. It's quite amusing when they go back to on-prem IT and experience the sheer joyful pleasure of documents in folders on a network share.

    I heard of one company that moved away from G Suite, a contributing factor being that when one logged in in the morning there was no guarantee that some stylist wonk (i.e. a dickhead) at Google hadn't decided to move everything around again in GMail, or Sheets, or something. Every time this happened half the company struggled to get anything done for a week or so whilst they relearned it. Again. O365 went out the window because of the search problem.

    In my experience web based stuff like GSuite struggles for usability, simply because keyboard short cuts are generally shit in web based things. Latency is another crippling issue for productivity. We've got offices all over the world, which simply means that 2 thirds of the company is guaranteed to be too far away from the data centre hosting a sheet. This really puts a strain on anyone involved in collaborative editing of a document or sheet. And forget dealing with large amounts of data in a sheet (it's painful).

    Another huge problem is that the MS vs FBI case involving warrants to access MS's Irish data centre is still unresolved, and likely to be resolved in favour of the FBI. If that happens, then any company with anything in G Suite, O365, has to consider that it is potentially sharing everything with Uncle Sam. Not necessarily a good idea when you're a company like Airbus (Boeing are quite happy to lobby against them in the US).

    The MS - FBI case is interesting because it potentially extends the scope of the US Wire Fraud Act to cover IT infrastructure outside of the US.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "If that happens, then any company with anything in G Suite, O365, has to consider that it is potentially sharing everything with Uncle Sam"

      Not an issue for Microsoft - their security model requires approval from local region data custodians that work for local Microsoft entities to retrieve overseas data to the US. The US can say what it likes, but those data controllers are not got to want to go to prison for breaking EU law. Google however have already had to roll over.

      "The MS - FBI case is interesting because it potentially extends the scope of the US Wire Fraud Act to cover IT infrastructure outside of the US."

      Doesnt make any difference. The GDPR was specifically designed to make it vastly more painful to break EU law than to break US law. The fines are vast and company officers can be imprisoned. (The GDPR also covers the data of Americans that is stored in the EU.)

      1. DonL

        "company officers can be imprisoned."

        That is not true:

        https://www.whitecase.com/publications/alert/new-eu-guidelines-data-protection-officers

        "the GDPR does not lead to individual liability of the DPO for non-compliance by the business"

        The cloud provider I have checked didn't accept responsibility for fines if data leaks because of errors on their side. However they claim they fully comply of course..

        In other words: Storing your data elsewhere can be very risky since you have to take full responsibility for your suppliers.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "That is not true:"

          Yes it is, Under section 77 of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act, the Justice Secretary has the power to introduce new regulations that would allow a custodial sentence to be available as a sanction to offences under section 55 of the DPA.

  13. J J Carter Silver badge
    Windows

    Courageous

    I feel sad for the Airbus BOFHs left with the task of migrating and managing 130,000 G Suite users with no integration to the AD forrest, no scripts like Powershell, redumentary reporting and no support for GDPR or other compliance controls.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: Courageous

      If your AD forest goes down but nobody's using an MS Office suite, would anybody notice in the first place?

      "no scripts like Powershell"

      Sign me up!

      "no support for GDPR"

      You could at least try a bit harder. Anyone who knows how to search the Internet knows that's bollocks.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Courageous

        ""no scripts like Powershell"

        Sign me up!"

        Have fun when you want to change some attribute on 130,000 users and have to do it 50 at a time!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Courageous

          change some attribute on 130,000 users

          I don't think you even work in IT. Sales, maybe, but nothing technical.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Courageous

            "I don't think you even work in IT"

            I'm head of infrastructure for a FTSE 250 financial and apparently the only one of us that knows what he is talking about:

            https://support.google.com/a/answer/6208725?hl=en

            As I said, try doing that via Google Suite for 130,000 users compared to a PowerShell script and a CSV file with O365.

            1. Dan 55 Silver badge

              Re: Courageous

              I'm head of infrastructure for a FTSE 250 financial and apparently the only one of us that knows what he is talking about

              Indeed.

              https://support.google.com/a/answer/40057?hl=en

              There you go, bulk add/edit with a CSV file and you can mangle that any which way you want with any language you want. Even with PowerShell for Linux if you're feeling masochistic.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Courageous

                "There you go, bulk add/edit with a CSV file and you can mangle that any which way you want with any language you want. Even with PowerShell for Linux if you're feeling masochistic"

                Nope that's only for bulk adding new users. Not modifying existing ones.

                There is a Directory API you can write your own code for, but you are on your own. Compared to O365 where you have a full command line management solution already it's dire.

                1. Dan 55 Silver badge

                  Re: Courageous

                  Read the entire page, not just the title at the top.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: Courageous

                    "Read the entire page, not just the title at the top."

                    Like the bit where it says "If you include an existing username in your file, the user's password, and first and last name will be updated."?

                    I.e. nothing else. And i'm sure users will love having their password reset for basic admin!

        2. ridley

          Re: Courageous

          GAM is popular with GSUITE BOFH's

          https://github.com/jay0lee/GAM

    2. naive

      Re: Courageous

      It is courageous decision of the Airbus management. Like in the case of Munich/Linux, there will be a lot of MS induced publicity to point out the things which go bad.

      For google it is an unique opportunity to get a foothold in corporate IT, and scratch at the MS monopoly when it comes to the corporate desktop.

      Like in the case with Munich, there is a an enormous amount of risk involved:

      - Cooperation with Google, are they willing to help fast, and come with solutions.

      - Treason and sabotage from MS influenced middle management bots in the Airbus company, who can subtly manage user perception in a negative manner. Like in Munich, they are everywhere just below the line of sight.

      - Management of the press, MS has tons of journalists on its payroll, willing to tarnish any competing solution with a constant stream of negative click bait/fake news about the project, tarnishing user perception of Airbus employees.

      - Airbus is not entirely free of government influence. And as we know, there are tons of lobbyists, who will try to influence politicians so they pressure Airbus management to take decisions which are not beneficial to the project.

      For sure, MS will do anything it can to make such a flagship project fail, it could harm their valued monopoly in a serious way. Lets hope, Airbus succeeds, and avoids what happened in Munich, since many of the risks involved are hard to manage. The odds are a bit better compared with Munich, since Munich was on its own in the case of Linux, Airbus is supported by Google.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Courageous

        "Like in the case of Munich/Linux, there will be a lot of MS induced publicity to point out the things which go bad."

        Seeing as they wasted ~ €100 million on that project its of public interest.

        1. Dan 55 Silver badge

          Re: Courageous

          Seeing as they wasted ~ €100 million on that project its of public interest.

          It's not wasted, it works, it saved licence fees. Now they're wasting money switching to back completely to MS. There's some kind of cosy relationship between MS, Accenture, and the mayor. That's in the public interest.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Courageous

            "It's not wasted, it works,"

            No it doesn't - 20% of users still use Windows, and they are migrating to Windows 10 due to it's failure.

            it saved licence fees

            It saved €14 million in license fees, but cost ~€17 million to migrate over 10 years and ~€82 million to remediate systems to work with Linux. As per Munich council's own figures.

            "Now they're wasting money switching to back completely to MS."

            It saves them money on the zoo they now run.

            " There's some kind of cosy relationship between MS, Accenture, and the mayor. "

            The migration to Windows 10 was driven by user complaints as to how awful using Limux / Libre Office was.

            1. Tom 38 Silver badge

              Re: Courageous

              It saved €14 million in license fees, but cost ~€17 million to migrate over 10 years and ~€82 million to remediate systems to work with Linux. As per Munich council's own figures.

              When the new political administration decided they needed a report to justify their change, they got an obliging gushing Microsoft partner to write whatever they felt they needed in order to justify it.

              I'm sure they did the same the other way around when they decided to go to Linux, but believing politicians when they say things about money is just foolish.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Courageous

                "When the new political administration decided they needed a report to justify their change, they got an obliging gushing Microsoft partner to write whatever they felt they needed in order to justify it."

                No those numbers are directly from Munich councils own it department's statements. No third party involvement.

          2. rmason Silver badge

            Re: Courageous

            @Dan 55

            No it didn't work, not at all.

            They had staff sat with no software available to do whatever their job function was. Those staff got windows boxes or, in some cases (IIRC) just sat about.

            It was a very big, costly, failure. On multiple fronts. Staff complaining about unusable systems went through the roof.

            They are moving back because they realised the true cost of getting it up and running then supporting it.

            They were overbudget, failed to meet all the requirements, so it got canned.

            1. Dan 55 Silver badge
              1. This post has been deleted by its author

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Courageous

                From your link:

                "problems cited included printing, viewing and editing documents, unstable programs, poor usability and difficulty exchanging documents with outside parties."

                "Ahead of last month's council vote on the future of LiMux, Kristina Frank, party member with the CSU, told the meeting that operating system's continued use was no longer viable."

                "Linux may be the right choice for many users but it's not for Munich," she said."

                "it's not efficient or intuitive and there are regular problems when you have to add other software, regular compatibility problems."

      2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Courageous

      >>It is courageous decision of the Airbus management

      That's an unusual spelling of stupid.

      130K users on GSuite?! Oh wow are they in for a world of pain. They are going to need a small army of people just to deal with the many many painfully non enterprise ready aspects of Gsuite at that scale.

  14. DonL

    Putting your sensitive data in the cloud..

    Especially for a company that is so knowledge intensive, I find it strange that they would want to put their data elsewhere outside of their control. You can never really know for sure if anyone else is reading/copying your sensitive documents.

    Also, can't employees very (too) easily login from their home PC and download the documents? Normally you'd have multiple independent lines of defense (firewalls, logging, tokens, access rights), so people that don't need to work from home are unable to access their documents at all when not at a physical terminal in the company.

    I don't know about the controls O365 or GSuite provides, but for me it would be a major concern. If anything unexpected were to happen, the company could go down in no time..

    It seems to me the CIO might be right feature-wise (I don't know), but he seems dangerously optimistic about this.

    How do others view this?

  15. Barnabustg

    Vision and Leadership

    The desktop is dead. These days people want consistent multiple device productivity with NO data loss. The most functional, secure and reliable online office productivity suite is G suite which works well on all devices. By comparison Office 365 online is very limited and to do anything significant requires a fat client install whether that be a windows, iOS or Andriod app the experience is inconsistent. Maybe someday there will be a fully functional and reliable online office and when that happens we will no longer need office 20XX etc however why would MS ever do that… Another way of looking at it is how many things can you do with G Suite that you cant with office 365 - there are many right out of the box specifically geared towards productivity (ie voice to text, built in AI etc) and collaboration (greater file format support etc etc). I admire the vision and approach taken by Airbus to make such a significant change :-)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Vision and Leadership

      "The desktop is dead"

      Yes, most companies are slowly moving to VDI.

      "The most functional, secure and reliable online office productivity suite is G suite "

      That's a joke right? Or you are clueless.

      "comparison Office 365 online is very limited and to do anything significant requires a fat client install whether that be a windows, iOS or Andriod app the experience is inconsistent."

      Which is more reliable, functional and secure. Office online is roughly equivalent to GSuite. But no one uses Office online. They use the client software which is available for almost every platform.

      "Another way of looking at it is how many things can you do with G Suite that you cant with office 365"

      Very very little. However there are hundreds of things you can do with Office 365, but not Gsuite.

      " - there are many right out of the box specifically geared towards productivity (ie voice to text, built in AI etc)"

      Office did transcription years ago. For instance in Exchange UC, all your Voicemails are automatically transcribed and emailed to you as text.

      "built in AI etc)"

      Like Microsoft Translator?

  16. x 7 Silver badge

    Is this G-suite the same as the normal Google Doc programs with a better back end? or something more sophisticated?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      " Is this G-suite the same as the normal Google Doc programs with a better back end?"

      Pretty much:

      https://gsuite.google.com/compare-editions/

  17. Alistair Silver badge
    Mushroom

    *cough*

    News 2020:

    Airbus signs outsourcing deal with IBM and switches to Lotus Notes.

    <not sure if Joke Alert, Nuclear Option or Black Helicopter icon appropriate>

  18. tempemeaty
    Facepalm

    Out of the Frying Pan, Into the Fire...

    Of all the companies to come along and out innovate Microsoft, why did it have to be the Evil Empire of Google? ¯\(º_o)/¯ (;-_-)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Out of the Frying Pan, Into the Fire...

      Because no one could bear it to be Oracle.

      1. Francis Boyle Silver badge

        LOL

        (Well, at least a low chortle)

  19. kryptylomese

    Move away from Microsoft office and you can be free

    The last 2 companies I have worked for do not use Office and instead use G Suite and this has not only saved them money but also allowed everyone freedom in choosing their platform and I am pleased to say that Linux has won out (some people still chose Windows and Mac). However, some people "needed" MS Office so they would be completely compatible with documents created by as well as for other companies (the number of people who needed this was tiny).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Move away from Microsoft office and you can be free

      "and this has not only saved them money"

      How? If web crapps only will do then O365 is cheaper.

      "Linux has won out (some people still chose Windows and Mac). "

      Running a zoo costs lots of money and is a support nightmare.

  20. HmmmYes Silver badge

    Is it just me that fucking hates excel and word?

    They are fine for small documents and rough + ready figures.

    But the though of trying to manage a long lived document in Word, or process data in Excel, Eurgh!

  21. HmmmYes Silver badge

    The money thing is a piss in the ocean - companies spend more on coffee.

    Its the data hell and productivity that fucks you over.

  22. This post has been deleted by its author

  23. Lord_Beavis
    Trollface

    Is that

    Munich I smell?

  24. Sil

    Force organization to make a change

    "We want to force the organization to make a change".

    Rarely works.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Who's Using What?

    It would be helpful to see a breakdown of the Airbus workforce by roles. The CIO is quoted as talking about engineers' need to collaborate but my guess is they are a minority in the workforce. He also talks about empowering shop floor technicians, the people that actually make things. They could well be the majority by role (but my money's on Admin staff still) but why do they need Google G Suite? What will they do with it? How and when will they access it? Better a company Facebook page or Youtube channel surely?

    This decision has ideology/religion at its heart I think. Most Western school leavers join the workforce already up to speed, pretty much, with WORD and EXCEL and many will have used PowerPoint as well. They've been trained for free, if you like. That isn't true of Google G-Suite.

    Then you have to add in the consideration that G-Suite just isn't very good, it isn't performant and it's clunky in use.

    Add in Google's track record of simply abandoning things and this comes across as a very high-risk decision indeed. People here are talking about Munich, I think Dunkirk might turn out to be more appropriate.

    The decision Airbus should have made was to uncouple the two needs. Stick with Microsoft for Office tools like WORD, EXCEL and look elsewhere for the collaboration environment. If they look at a platform like Kahootz (www.kahootz.com) or any of its many competitors, they could achieve much, much more with none of the grating conflicts and additional training/support costs that will inevitably arise with G-Suite, and save bucket loads of cash at the same time.

    The Airbus CIO simply hasn't thought this through, hasn't done his homework and has possibly damaged Airbus productivity in the process.

    1. J J Carter Silver badge

      Re: Who's Using What?

      Just another here today, gone tomorrow CEO who can only remember from his MBA that he as 100 days to move people's cheese

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Dump Windows too, not just Office, tell that the Airbus CIO

    Dump Windows too, not just Office, tell that the Airbus CIO. Airbus is a major user of 3D CAD software CATIA v5/v6. Unfortunately Dassault dropped Unix/Linux support, and at the moment only Windows is supported with CATIA. Airbus co-developed CATIA v5 with Dassault and was its biggest customer. CATIA was stuck in v4 on Unix mainframes and Airbus back then demanded to port CATIA to Windows NT4, and helped them with development, the resulting version was CATIA v5 released for Unix and Windows NT4/2000. Airbus should dump all Microsoft slurp incl Windows, not just Office, and force Dassault to release new versions of CATIA software again for Unix/Linux/macOS! Anyway Dassault will have to modify CATIA to support Google G suite as replacement for Excel interaction.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Dump Windows too, not just Office, tell that the Airbus CIO

      "Anyway Dassault will have to modify CATIA to support Google G suite as replacement for Excel interaction."

      No, I think you will find that Airbus will have to keep those users on Excel.

  27. JohnFen Silver badge

    Uh Oh

    The number of trendy buzzwords that Luc Hennekens has uttered in this piece makes me wonder what the real motivation for this decision is, and makes me wonder about the condition of Airbus.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    All you need

    Is a CEO who keeps muttering "digitize, digitize, digitize" and throwing every bollockbrained idea at the company.

    Hell, even our website is crap, the intranet is a fragmented mess and it goes downhill from there

    Anon for very obvious reasons

  29. DBJDBJ

    All very puzzling. This "news" describes a somewhat fictional story.

  30. Zmodem

    just get zbrush, and scribble on the real dimensions in MS paint, and it might not take 20 years to design anything new, artist can just quickly draw a 3d model on screen in 10 minutes and have a new concept design

    1. Zmodem

      if the artists are good enough, you can just go straight into 3d printing, or clay modelling, like old engineering drawings on paper

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This is like the Lotus (old school) vs Microsoft (at the time new school) arguments in the early 00s.

    Lotus argued that they had more functionality, true, and more enterprise experience than Microsoft, also true. The problem was that no one wanted to use Lotus.

    With the 35 and under generation, everyone wants Google G Suite.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      >>With the 35 and under generation, everyone wants Google G Suite.

      Cant say that's my view or most other people of my age group's view in my experience. MS Office is preferred at work if they get a choice.

  32. IGnatius T Foobar
    Linux

    Can they both lose?

    As a die hard penguinista I've traditionally cheered on any migration away from Microsoft, but now that Google is evil too, I don't know anymore. Can I hope they both lose?

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    G suite is more fun because:

    - Collaboration works and documents do not get destroyed. With MS I have copied tables in docs with several users collaborating and the document exploded and became unreadable.

    - Largely platform independent. Chromebooks show that it really works.

    - High uptime.

    - Outsources most tech admin and (when used) allows synchronization to be able to work offline. Less time wasted on "clever" users doing all kinds of tech-admin with own tapestreamers and the most fantastic other stuff..

    - Is capable enough to run the forms of SMEs and bigger companies.

    - Allow standardising on cloud-standards. (How come in this day and age we can still read about ministries sending MS-Docs with macros that students have to run to do tests, and then all teachers have to start wiping PCs and installing specific office versions.). (To be fair: O365 can be used for this too (become indepenedent of the config some "designer" somewhere has)).

    - Allows dirt cheap hardware for standard-jobs/tasks and allows co-existing with any other kind (Mac, Chromebooks, Linux, Win10 etc.). MS-Office requires Win for MS-Access and once you use it you quickly discover that you actually need to use the full fat-client quickly.

    I am not sure if Airbus is going about it the right way if they are going to try to force the organization.

    Experienced users that find the correct balance can have more fun using G Docs for the majority of their work and combining it with other solutions.

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Silos, diversity, agile, transformation - Wait a sec: Bingo! I've got Bingo here!

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