Change is hard but choosing the wrong service is harder

I was listening to the news on the local Cincinnati NPR station this morning and heard a story about the City of Cincinnati moving from its self-hosted email service to either Google or Microsoft. In the analysis portion of the segment, the reporter said;

City officials are arguing for Microsoft because the city employees are already familiar with Microsoft products and it would make the transition easier.

Huh. Read that again and let that sink in a bit.

The rationale for choosing a company to manage what could be lots and lots of sensitive information about the government of a city and about 300,000 of its residents is based on how easy it is to change? I would hope the criteria for choosing an email service is a lot deeper than “easy to change.”

I’m not making an argument for or against Google or Microsoft. They both probably have fine products that will do the job. But the pain of change is temporary. The pain of choosing the wrong product, service or provider lasts a whole lot longer.