As of January 2011, Rentokil had 19,000 users on its Google Apps system.
Increased collaboration capabilities have allowed the company to begin to integrate its sales databases across divisions. Now, units can begin cross-selling and using geographical information to target different potential customers using Google maps. "We're rolling that out throughout the group," Kinsella says. "That's one example of where we've used mash-up technology to enable us to do things we couldn't do before." The company has also begun to create a global Intranet.
Kinsella estimates that Rentokil has saved about 70 percent of what it would have spent to go with a server-based internal e-mail system. "And it would have taken a lot longer to get there."
He advises other CIOs looking to revamp business application deployments to consider the cloud.
"There are certain things -- collaboration tools like mail, chat and calendar -- which are oblivious choices for cloud computing. It's a no-brainer," he says. "I think for forward-thinking companies ... this is clearly the right way to go."
For our SideXSide comparison of collaboration tools, read the article Which Office Suite is Right for Your Users?