What's the best way to handle when an employee leaves the company? OneDrive and Email access

Super Contributor

So, I'm reading through this page to find the best process for how to handle an employee leaving the company:



We have all our employees setup with who their manager is so if I delete their AD account, it automatically reassigns their OneDrive files to their manager and sends that manager an email telling them they have 30 days to get out any files they want before they all get deleted.  This is great as I don't have to do any work.


However, when I delete the AD account, it also kills the email box so then no one can go through the person's emails to see if there's anything they should save.  I saw some people recommended changing the mailbox to a Shared mailbox which I thought sounded like a great idea.  However, I then read on this page that it says "Don't delete the old user's account. That's required to anchor the shared mailbox."


So it seems like deleting the account automates the OneDrive reassignment but then breaks email.  Not deleting the account means I can reassign the email but then I have to also go in and reassign OneDrive manually.


Is there a preferred way of handling this sort of thing so the employees manager can have access to their email and OneDrive information without having to do all kinds of manual steps to make that work?



3 Replies

You can put the mailbox on hold, then delete the user - this provisions it as Inactive mailbox and will preserve all the data in it: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/office365/securitycompliance/create-and-manage-inactive-mailboxes


But they are a bit harder to work with if you need frequent access to the data. Some more considerations here: https://practical365.com/exchange-online/shared-mailboxes-vs-inactive-mailboxes-departed-users/

@Vasil Michev So when a user's O365 license is revoked, it won't trigger OneDrive for Business to notify the manager (who is listed on the user's AD account) to do something with the files?

@Mike Boehm 


To preserve all of the emails I would do what others have said and set litigation hold on the mailbox.  That way you'll be able to search the mailbox as an admin even if you delete the AD object and the license.


For mailboxes that need to be converted to shared mailboxes, they do still need the AD object and they are limited to 50GB and do not include an archive. 


One way to get around the AD object tie is to delete the AD account.  Let AD Connect Sync and you'll see the mailbox go into the Deleted Mailbox recycle bin.  Wait a bit and restore the mailbox from O365.  This will convert it to a cloud mailbox that no longer ties to the AD object.  Keep an eye on that mailbox though as I've seen the sync try and delete the mailbox again, but it will stick.  I've done this with mailboxes I've converted to shared and mailboxes that still required an Exchange license to do the size.