Many of the companies we engage with are confused about the cloud, what it means, how it works, is it right for them and perhaps most importantly, is it secure?
One Managing Director recently told me that he was thinking of moving his IT to the cloud. When I asked him why, his response was “because everyone else is!”
His response shows that the cloud is definitely in vogue at the moment, but that’s not necessarily a good enough business reason to move your IT to the cloud.
Had he said that he was thinking of moving his IT to the cloud because he wanted his employees to concentrate on increasing the profitability of the company and that he wanted to be able to work from anywhere with improved access for his workforce and higher availability then I would have been more inclined to agree.
As well as allowing users to concentrate on their day to day responsibilities and offering more flexible, secure access and collaboration, cloud computing allows your business to scale your IT both up and down without the need for investment in expensive equipment.
The cloud also means that you no longer have to worry about updates and maintenance of your servers and it also presents an opportunity for businesses to improve their disaster recovery whilst also improving the availability of their IT.
And if you are worried about security, then you really needn’t be, as with the right cloud partner your data will more than likely be safer than if you store it at your own premises.
So to cloud or not to cloud? In view of the above, surely the answer is an overwhelming yes?
As always there are some scenarios where cloud is simply not the logical step.
Consideration needs to be given to your internet connectivity and if it will cope with the increased bandwidth required.
Consideration should also be given to the applications that you run and whether they are available in the cloud.
Budget should also be considered as many businesses are surprised to find that cloud can often be prohibitive in terms of cost when compared to an on premise solution over 3-5 years.
Technical Drive often find that the answer is actually maybe ………… that is to adopt some cloud services such as email, CRM and a cloud based backup, but to keep other applications and services on premise.
This is referred to as a hybrid solution and often we find that this mix of cloud and on premise gives a perfect balance for many of the businesses that we work with.
And as for our ‘in vogue’ Managing Director, well he discovered that the hybrid solution was in fact the right choice for his business and for his budget!