Global Safety Company Complements Unified Communications Solution with Cloud-Based Messaging

“By moving to a Microsoft platform, we have reduced the cost for our unified communications environment by 50 percent.”

- Thomas Boxrud, Director of Enterprise Infrastructure Services, UL


UL (Underwriters Laboratories), a world leader in advancing safety is best known for testing and certifying a wide range of products such as life-saving devices, fire suppression equipment, light bulbs, and household appliances. UL has 68 facilities and 120 inspection centers, so the ability to communicate effectively from any location is critical. For messaging and collaboration, UL had deployed IBM Lotus Notes and Domino, but as its business grew globally, the company found its needs had exceeded the solution’s capabilities. As part of an initiative to provide a comprehensive unified communications solution, it decided to deploy a Microsoft communications and collaboration platform that included both on-premises solutions and Microsoft Office 365 cloud-based services. With this transition, UL reduced costs by 50 percent and provided a scalable platform that would grow with the company.



UL (Underwriters Laboratories), headquartered in Northbrook, Illinois, is a global independent safety science company that offers expertise across five strategic businesses: product safety, environment, life and health, verification services and training through UL University. UL is concerned with the safety aspects of all potentially hazardous products.

Not only does its testing and certification services involve 19,000 different products, materials, components and systems, (such as life-saving devices, fire suppression, fire containment, chemical vapors, and mechanical and automotive equipment), but the company has grown with the world’s evolving safety needs to include testing, certification and verification of water, solar panels, and “green” products.


To begin its campaign to move email to the cloud, UL decided to pilot cloud-based services from Microsoft with the Microsoft Business Productivity Online Standard Suite. As UL engaged with Microsoft, it learned about Microsoft Office 365, the next generation of hosted services that combines the familiar Office desktop with enhanced cloud-based communication and collaboration services. It joined the Office 365 Rapid Deployment Program to test the suite of services, and ultimately decided to migrate its messaging solution from Lotus Notes and Domino to Microsoft Exchange Online.


With its transition to a Microsoft unified communications platform that includes both on-premises and hosted solutions, UL has brought its technology environment up-to-date and provided room for growth in the future. It has reduced costs and overall administration, without sacrificing key capabilities that keep its employees productive.

Reduce Costs by 50 Percent

UL has reduced costs a number of ways by implementing Microsoft solutions and services. “By moving to a Microsoft platform, we have reduced the cost for our unified communications environment by 50 percent,” says Boxrud. With smaller...

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