Cloud computing is now one of the best options for IT services these days. However, many organizations are still sticking to older methods of storage and information management. If you are one of the latter, there are some compelling reasons for transferring your on-premises data storage to cloud-based servers.
Here are several reasons why it may be advantageous for you to consider converting your data to cloud storage:
Managed cloud services are cost-effective
The most apparent benefit to converting your business to cloud computing is the money savings. The cloud frees up money and space rather than paying for expensive infrastructure, information damage, upgrade costs, and other charges. Plus, there are peripheral costs of staff, energy costs, and so on.
With cloud storage, you pass these problems onto a provider. By moving to the cloud, you no longer have to burden yourself with maintaining and staying on top of all the demands of on-site storage.
Another element to consider with the cost is scalability. With managed cloud services, scaling is a snap rather than limited by current storage capacity and budgets. In particular, this benefit is great for industries with seasonal spikes in data use, such as retail.
A third aspect is knowing you can create hybrid solutions. It is possible to place some data on the cloud while other data remains on-site.
Many companies have valid security concerns with specific data storage on the cloud. For them, a hybrid solution is ideal. Companies can store sensitive data locally with the rest on the cloud. Local storage also limits access from outside locations.
Also, businesses in heavily regulated industries such as finance and healthcare can't use cloud storage due to legal constraints. Laws prevent several types of data from being stored on third-party servers. Therefore, maintaining these records at a company headquarters is a must.
In such circumstances, a hybrid solution is optimal. With a hybrid solution, the best elements of cloud storage along with the security of private servers. Rather than be forced into one or another situation, you can pick and choose which data needs to be on-site and off-site.
Yet another challenge of relying on older hardware and in-house information storage is managing cross-compatibility. Systems not working together lead to constant issues and limit options in terms of future upgrades and software.
Alternatively, cloud computing uses browser-based dashboards and other software solutions that are often superior to the local systems. Clouds have a setup to get the same job done more efficiently.
For example, working on an SQL database in-house means there has to be a local SQL Server installation with Tableau as the client. Of course, this is a setting that is useful for some instances. However, the majority of businesses have no use for the complete setup, which is very cumbersome. Additionally, the entire setup is costly and time-consuming to manage. To make matters worse, you have to hire specialists to set everything up, handle the system and keep your data secure.
Now, compare this experience with running Looker or Snowflake web interface. A side-by-side comparison makes it clear which is the better choice. With managed cloud services, you can access the interface from any location. You can run it on any device, and there is no particular installation or on-site management needed.
Maintaining an ability to manage information remotely increases flexible working policies, which appear to be here to stay for many of us post COVID. Business needs are changing, and your business needs to keep up. Your employees today need to be connected from anywhere they may be.
Improved security and stability
Downtime is a constant threat to a business's productivity and bottom line. Servers going down at the wrong time can cost a company millions in current and future revenue and lost productivity. For firms like this, it makes sense to switch to cloud computing, where there are experts and redundancies in place to keep things running.
Additionally, cloud-based servers generally are better at protecting customer data. Managed cloud services have far more resources to prevent future threats and current downtime from harming your business.
Security failure is a constant concern in business today. The threat from hackers and user error is persistent. These people seek out or accidentally expose data due to inadequate security protection.
With the sophistication of cybercriminals today, it takes more than just a sound antivirus system to stop attackers. In addition, specialized help is needed constantly in an attack, and many businesses do not have the budget for full-time IT security staff.
With reliable and safe managed cloud services, updates and security are handled by the cloud provider. With a cloud service, there is no need to constantly worry about network safety.
No matter what, all businesses will take their approach to implement their cloud-based solution. Still, almost every time, companies will need to move to cloud computing.
We get it. Just the thought of such a transition may sound daunting and stressful. Meanwhile, others worry about data loss or a costly migration. The truth is, migrating to the cloud is the overall simplest and safest solution for your business network.
If any of these points pertain to you, consider managed cloud services.
Increase cash flow by reducing costs
The two most significant ways cloud services can save your business money are hardware and software.
Storing on-site data means purchasing and maintaining equipment. Obviously, this costs money. In addition, server software costs money. On top of that, the equipment needs regular upgrades; this costs money and resources to transfer data. It doesn't end there! It would help if you also had staff to maintain and protect your data and equipment every step of the way. Also, do you want to know how much this costs in energy bills?
These expenses quickly add up. And this isn't even counting accidents such as data breaches, power failure, and others. When your data is on the cloud, all these issues become someone else's problem.
Business-grade software can get expensive. Having to purchase different software licenses and keep renewing and testing compatibility can get costly. Cloud-based apps typically cost a fraction of software installed locally.
Increase collaboration and productivity
A major plus to managed cloud services can access information on any device anywhere. With cloud data, you can access information at work, home, on vacation, or anywhere you may be when it is needed.
Cloud access has gained much interest since many COVID-19 shutdowns. It looks like many companies are choosing to remain at least partially remote. Remaining remote means cloud computing is a must.
Can you afford more downtime?
Locally stored data means that if there are any problems, you lose access to your information. A big storm, power loss, natural disasters, or even a breach or simple human error can cause significant downtime until power or you can restore access.
Another benefit of cloud computing is that there is far less downtime. Loss of power means employees can still access data with phones or laptops. Still, others can continue remote work until you restore power.
Automatic cloud computing data backups
Making sure you backup everything is a necessary part of IT security. Rather than managing physical USB or other drives that can be lost, damaged, or even stolen and having to worry about being done correctly, managed cloud services handle all of this for you off-site.
When you upload data to the cloud, there are several copies stored in several locations. This way, even if a server does go down, you still have the data in two or more other backup locations to prevent downtime. If there is a disaster, your data is still secure at multiple locations.
There is no such thing as guaranteed protection in cybersecurity. However, there is confidence that cloud services will manage your security better than you can yourself without a massive IT budget with managed cloud services.
Cloud computing providers generally operate with established standards and safety measures that keep updated with the best security protocols.
Also, cloud computing companies have the resources to hire an entire staff of top cybersecurity talent that most small and medium businesses can not manage. A perfect example is Microsoft, which operates cloud computing solutions for small businesses. Microsoft spends over a billion dollars per year on cybersecurity with thousands of full-time experts on hand.
When managed cloud services may not be ideal for you
While cloud computing is ideal for most businesses out there, of course, there are situations where this may not be the best solution for your company. Here are two cases where the cloud may not be ideal for your company:
Suppose your company is involved in an industry with strict data regulations, such as finance or medicine. In that case, you may want to reconsider cloud services. Many governments require data to be stored locally. While some services store on a cloud, everything may not be possible. Before deciding to store your data off-site, it is wise to check with local regulations.
Availability of reliable Internet
While many places have fast and reliable internet, there are still some locations where reliability can be an issue. If you can not rely on constant internet access, having all of your data on the cloud can cause more downtime than locally stored information.
Alternatively, some businesses may have large amounts of data that need to be regularly uploaded and downloaded only at a company headquarters. This situation may be safer and more reliable than remote storage to store locally.
Moving your information to a managed cloud service is an excellent move for almost any business looking to improve collaboration and security while reducing costs. Be sure to do your due diligence and consult with your IT expert before deciding if cloud computing is the best move for your business. The cloud migration experts at SSI are ready to help with any questions you have. Contact us today.