Key outcomes

95,000 VFE licenses moved in bulk to Google Cloud Storage using CloudM Migrate

A further 35,000 accounts offboarded to GCS using CloudM Archive

Millions of dollars saved versus renewing to Google archived user licenses

Critical information restored with CloudM Backup after accidental deletion


Holcim Ltd is a global leader in innovative and sustainable building solutions with over 60,000 employees worldwide. The organization was already familiar with CloudM, having used CloudM Migrate as part of their mergers and acquisitions as well as divestment migration processes and CloudM Automate to reduce reliance on manual work during the offboarding process. When presented with a large renewal bill for their Google licenses, the organization chose to leverage CloudM’s platform to drastically reduce the payment. They also decided to take part in the beta test for the new CloudM Backup module to improve business continuity and data resilience.

“Backup combines everything that CloudM does brilliantly – migration and automation – into a product that will help a lot of organizations easily combat the consequences of data loss.”

Paul Young
Head of Collaboration & Communications Digital Solutions



Project 1: Preventing Huge Renewal Costs

Similar to many other organizations using Google Workspace, Holcim had historically used Vault Former Employee (VFE) licenses to store ex-employee data.

When Google transitioned from the free VFE license to a paid equivalent called the Archive User (AU) license, Holcim were looking at a significant price hike. With more than 130,000 existing VFE accounts and future employee turnover to contend with, the organization’s renewal bill was expected to be in excess of $4m per year unless they could find a cost effective solution.

Using CloudM Migrate to urgently move 95,000 accounts

With the renewal date quickly approaching, we identified nearly 95,000 licenses that needed to be moved immediately, in bulk, to avoid triggering a first wave of costly renewals from the new Google AU license type.

Due to the size of the project and the requirement to meet Holcim’s internal security policies, we chose the self-hosted version of CloudM’s Migrate module to move the accounts to Google Cloud Storage.

Implementing CloudM Automate to secure future savings

With existing accounts dealt with, the organization had to ensure that future leavers would not come under Google AU licenses. Thankfully, they were already using CloudM Automate for their offboarding workflows: its ability to automate resource allocation, account access and license management ties in neatly with CloudM Archive, which enables organizations to archive leaver data in Google Cloud Storage. No license is required for archived users, saving license and renewal fees.

So far, Holcim have archived an additional 35,000 users by adding an archive step to their offboarding workflow, continuing to store and save more year on year without any additional manual tasks. In addition to significant savings, they are also able to ensure compliance with global and local regulations through CloudM’s intuitive data retention policies.

“We have saved millions of dollars by using CloudM to move archive users to a secure storage archive”

Paul Young
Head of Collaboration & Communications Digital Solutions



Project 2: Improving Data Resilience And Business Continuity

Given their success with CloudM’s Migrate, Automate and Archive modules, Holcim were keen to help shape the development of our newest module, Backup, as part of our beta testing program. Backup helps protect an organization’s data from accidental deletion and malicious users whilst enabling mass restoration in the event of data loss. Crucially, as opposed to other backup solutions, the customer remains in complete control of their own data. Backup also satisfies the requirements of the Digital Operational Resilience Act (DORA): to comply with DORA, businesses operating in the EU have to incorporate data backup, recovery strategies, and system restoration protocols into their operations by January 2025.

Holcim had tried different solutions over the years, but they were either not fit for purpose or added unnecessary complexity and cost to the organization’s tech stack. Compliance requirements, quota management as part of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme and knowledge retention are the key drivers for Holcim’s need for a backup solution, and CloudM Backup fits the requirements perfectly. Within weeks, Holcim started to see the benefits of using a purpose-built backup solution for Google Workspace. 

“Backup is easy to use and does exactly what we need it to do. Our initial results look very promising and the module has been running seamlessly.”

Amit Acharya
General Manager
Corporate Digital Solutions



The Result

Having saved millions through smarter archive license management, the
organization is also saving hundreds of hours on manual administrative
tasks that plague IT teams when employees leave their organization.

After feeding into the development process during the beta test, adding Backup to their CloudM arsenal of data management tools was seamless. Despite giving the organization peace of mind that critical data would be safely backed up, it has already proven invaluable when dealing with data loss after the accidental deletion of an entire library, which thanks to Backup could be swiftly restored. Apart from the technical quality of the CloudM Platform, it is the constructive and personal working relationship that really stands out.

“Ever since we got the product it works. If something is not working as expected or needs a tweak, CloudM is willing to listen and find a solution. They demonstrate a level of thought and care that you don’t always see.”

Paul Young
Head of Collaboration & Communications Digital Solutions

If you would like to discover how much your organization could be saving with CloudM, book a 15 minute discovery call.



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