Google has persuaded Spanish bank Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA (BBVA) to migrate its workforce to Google Apps for Business.
110,000 BBVA employees will use Google Apps to 'increase productivity and drive innovation'. Email is being migrated to the cloud and 'real time collaboration benefits will remove the need to collaborate on different versions of a document' says
BBVA is also creating a 'High Performance Desktop' using the collaboration tools for internal knowledge management. BBVA also intends to create a social network to 'improve communication and explore new ways of working'
Initially 35,000 workers in Spain will use Google Apps suite, migrating the remaining employees in 26 countries by the end of 2012. Workers will use Gmail with Google Chat, Google Calendar, Google Docs, Google Groups, Google Sites and Google Video.
Cloud data: Bank data
BBVA's data will be distributed across the public cloud of datacentres and will not be held on its own private cloud. The data will still be stored in a way that meets the demands of banking regulators and data protection and would be as secure as any solution on the banks premises.
To allay any fears about privacy and data management BBVA told the BBC that it would use Google Apps for internal employee communication. Customer data and key banking systems would stay in data centres and be completely separate to the cloud solution.
Four million businesses world wide use Google's enterprise solutions, however this is the largest Enterprise deal that Google has done with its Google apps suite. Netherlands based food retailer Ahold , migrated 55,000 users to Google Apps last year.
At a typical cost per user of €40, this represents a sizeable deal per year for Google. Google is stepping up competition with Microsoft by selling its business software to replace Office on the desktop.
In the race to migrate to cloud based apps, is cost the only consideration? Perhaps bandwidth, privacy and data access issues will also influence your decision to move to the cloud.