Google to Microsoft 365 Migrations – Part 1

Google to Microsoft 365 Migrations – Part 1

Addressing common issues with Google to Microsoft 365 migrations

With experience migrating close to a million seats, Nero Blanco specialise in Microsoft tenant-to-tenant migrations – so much so that our team have been described as “world leaders in Microsoft migrations”.

We pride ourselves on our expertise in this area.

Our projects have ranged from small (50 user) migrations to large, complex migrations with up to 70,000 users – while our clients range from small and medium businesses through to enterprise level organisations of over 300,000 employees, within sectors that range from banking and finance, legal, government, not-for-profit, manufacturing and utilities.

Recently, we have seen a steady increase in demand for migrations from Google to Microsoft 365.

It’s not clear what’s driving this increase, but Microsoft have responded rapidly with new features and capabilities – particularly in the security and compliance arena, eDiscovery and, more recently, Copilot.  Many users in the Google arena are particularly taken with Power BI.

Microsoft appears to be winning the corporate battleground for the desktop worker.

What we are typically seeing though, is not so much of a Google shop deciding to make a complete about turn and to transition to Microsoft 365, but rather they are being acquired by a larger entity that is already on Microsoft 365 and the acquiring company mandates that the other party will be onboarded into their tenant.

We are currently working on a 7,000+ user migration from Google to Microsoft 365.

At an organisation level the Google people do not always take so well to this, but progress is progress and unfortunately, they have to get with the programme.

Typically, these users will be well versed in Gmail, Drive, Google Meet (Hangouts), Google Chat, Sheets, Slides and Docs. They’ve probably been using Zoom and Slack, and have a Mac device.

Much like the good old days of migrating Lotus Notes to Microsoft Exchange, Google administrators aren’t thrilled about the impending changes (though they’re a lot less hostile than the Notes team used to be!).

The first hurdle is working with the migrating IT Admins and stakeholders to ensure that they understand the environment that they are moving into and especially the security posture they will be integrated into.

The next hurdle is getting used to the language of Microsoft 365 settings and configuration.

Discussions around: Conditional Access policies, Intune Device compliance policies, App Protection Policies, device enrolment, Azure Information Protection, Sensitivity Labels, Data Leakage Protection, Retention Policies, Defender 365, Exchange Online Protection and sharing restrictions are usually met with a glazed and bewildered look!

Whilst Google Workspace has similar concepts, there is definitely a steep learning curve. Usually this is simplified by the organisation being ingested into an already mature environment.  Much of the configuration has already been dictated.  Some features will be lost and some gained of course.

The one sliver of hope is that almost everybody has used Microsoft Outlook, OWA (Outlook Web Application), Word and Excel in their working life, life – so adapting should be quick and easy.

Microsoft Office Applications in the main have become the staple of office productivity.

There are of course pockets of users, especially on Google, that will be using, Docs, Sheets and Slides.  Browser of choice is often Chrome and Safari over Microsoft Edge, but most organisations will allow the use of both Chrome and Edge, given that they are built on the same code base mainly.

Once the political landscape has settled – and the tech teams have agreed on their compliance settings – the discovery, design and migration phases can begin.


Her at Nero Blanco we have used nearly all the migration tools and we settle on the right tool for the right job.  For Google to M365 we use two migration tools, each with their pros and cons.

They key here is to understand the capabilities and the mapping of workloads.

Google Workspace (formerly G Suite)Microsoft 365
GmailExchange Online & Outlook
DriveOneDrive for Business
GroupsOffice 365 Group / Team
Google ChatMicrosoft Teams
Google Meet (Previously Hangouts)Microsoft Teams
VoiceMicrosoft Teams
CalendarExchange Online & Outlook
VaultArchive and Retention
KeepTo do & Planner
DocsMicrosoft Word
SheetsMicrosoft Excel
SlidesMicrosoft PowerPoint
Apps ScriptPower Automate
Cloud SearchOnline Search
Endpoint managementIntune
Security and controlSecurity and Compliance
Data regions and Access TransparencyMulti-Geo
Advanced Protection ProgramMicrosoft Defender 365/Labels/AIP
Alert CentreMicrosoft Defender 365
Security centreSecurity and Compliance

Part 2 to follow.

Got questions?

Nero Blanco exists to unite large-scale businesses through migration using powerful, seamless IT. Our expert team have developed a reputation for their flexible, problem-solving approach, collaborative, high-calibre service and guaranteed no-risk delivery.

Want to know more?

Call us on +44 203 880 2299 or email