Hospitality giant moves to the cloud for seamless collaboration

Accor improves communication and collaboration worldwide by migrating from on-premises Exchange servers to cloud-based Microsoft 365

At a glance

After a major acquisition, Accor needed to migrate more than 63,000 Outlook mailboxes and 30,000 Skype for Business users to a more flexible Microsoft 365 solution. Partnering with Atos, Accor seamlessly migrated its on-premises communication and collaboration tools to the cloud, to improve business productivity and reduce total cost of ownership.


    • New cloud-based platform with high levels of coordination and synergy
    • Reduced IT costs, improved productivity with online Office365 Apps
    • More secure and lower maintenance costs compared to an on-premises infrastructure, redundancy, high scalability, availability & worldwide access using a single logon.

“I wanted to thank Atos for the professionalism and the good humor shown towards Accor. This migration project has been long and strewn with many pitfalls that we have managed to overcome together. Without Atos this project would not have ended so well.”

Program manager, Accor

Accor S.A. is a French multinational hospitality company that owns, manages and franchises hotels, resorts and vacation properties across the globe. The largest hospitality company in Europe and the sixth largest in the world, Accor operates 5,100 hotels across 110 countries with a total capacity of approximately 704,000 rooms.

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A house divided

In 2016, French hospitality giant Accor finalized the acquisition of Fairmont Hotels and its 155 properties worldwide. Along with iconic hotels like The Plaza in New York and the Savoy in London, the acquisition brought with it 40,000 new users of on-premises Microsoft Exchange and Skype for Business.

These on-premises systems required a great deal of onsite maintenance and delivered different functionality and a heterogenous user experience depending on which system was installed at each location. To operate at maximum efficiency and collaborate effectively, Accor needed to deliver a consistent user experience to all its employees worldwide.

Getting everyone on the same page

To achieve this goal, Accor decided that a cloud-based Microsoft 365 system was the right choice. The challenge was to execute such a large migration in multiple geographies without impacting its operations. In the competitive hotel business, any miscommunication or delay in responding to guest requests can have a serious impact on revenue and the brand.

In 2019, Accor decided to pull the trigger on this major migration, but wisely decided not to go it alone. Due to the complexity and criticality of the effort, Accor turned to its partner Atos for help.

The effort began in August 2019, with Atos mapping out a plan for Accor using a classic hybrid migration environment that would move all Exchange mailboxes to cloud-based Office 365 and simultaneously convert Skype users to Microsoft Teams.

Over the course of the next 18 months, Atos used a combination of native Microsoft tools and its own offshore migration factory, tools and accelerators to execute the transition. Atos tools were used to automate preflight migration checks, pre- and post-migration comparisons, delegation checks and permissions.

These detailed checks and tests were instrumental in ensuring the project was delivered accurately and efficiently.

When COVID-19 caused disruptions worldwide, Atos’s robust global delivery model and business continuity plans were able to overcome the challenge, enabling the project to continue with as little delay as possible.

Multi-geographical provisioning and design were built-in to the project plan to ensure faster adoption, supported by hypercare and multiple train-the-trainer modules that Atos conducted for Accor’s IT teams.

A very accommodating solution

Accor’s new cloud-based Microsoft 365 platform provides its users with seamless coordination, improved business productivity and a better user experience. Employees can access their essential communication and collaboration tools anywhere in the world using a single sign on account.

Because it’s based in the cloud, the solution also has built-in security and redundancy for high availability and reduced risk. It is also much more scalable, enabling Accor to grow confidently without worrying about the incremental cost and effort of adding new users.

Finally, Accor’s new Microsoft 365 platform is more cost effective to operate and maintain than a comparable on-premises solution, making this a win-win for Accor.

Why Atos for Microsoft services?

Atos empowers employees by delivering collaborative tools and personalized services that engage employees and enable better customer service. Atos has transformed more than 2.5 million users to Microsoft 365, and our services bring together Microsoft’s Modern Workplace technology and our own end-to-end services. We have more than 6,500 Microsoft specialists, an in-house migration factory, and provide managed services support to 1.7 million users and 2.3 million devices globally across 115 countries.

Our dedicated Microsoft Center of Excellence, patented IP, tools, accelerators, frameworks and standardized methodologies enable clients to create an inclusive employee experience using Microsoft technology.

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