Moving your business to the Cloud
Thank goodness for the Cloud! Rewind ten years and remote working, file accessibility and team collaboration wouldn’t have been anywhere near as easy.
Most businesses will use some sort of cloud-based technology. In fact, research shows that 94% of enterprises do, yet Forbes reveals that 27% of workloads remain on-premise. This suggests that organisations are aware of the advantages of cloud computing, but many are yet to take their entire business over to the cloud.
Naturally, large-scale global businesses spend more money on cloud computing (£2.7 million to be precise). However, this is far outside the realms of possibility for medium-sized businesses, so what are your options? We share the top five advantages of cloud computing and show that it doesn’t have to be expensive – quite the opposite!
Migrating to the cloud
Moving to the cloud means relocating your data and software – either totally or partially (Hybrid) – onto the internet. By adopting IT cloud solutions, you allow employees to use your network to access what they need at any time, from any location.
Essentially, there are three main IT cloud solutions for you to choose from, which largely depends on your business needs. In moving to the cloud, you’ll need to decide whether you want to adopt public or private IT cloud solutions, or perhaps a ‘hybrid’ of the two.
There are a lot of factors to consider when deciding on the best model for moving to the cloud. Global IT models predict that 61% of enterprise workloads will be run on public or hybrid cloud platforms by the end of 2020. Now, these predictions were made before Covid-19 and so there’s every chance this will be higher. But what do we mean by private, public and hybrid IT cloud solutions?
A private cloud solution is where a company has the cloud to themselves. This can offer many benefits. A private cloud can be physically located in your office within your on-site data centre, or it can be hosted by a third-party service provider, such as Agile.
By contrast, a public cloud is where the cloud is shared with different customers. Microsoft Azure is a great example of a public cloud. With a public cloud, all hardware, software and supporting tech are owned and managed by the provider of the cloud. The advantages of a public cloud solution are often driven as much by cost as they are functionality. With no hardware or software to purchase, companies can access the cloud and only pay for the services they use. What’s more, with many public cloud solutions there’s near-unlimited scalability.
What are hybrid IT cloud solutions?
No surprises here, but hybrid IT cloud solutions offer ‘the best of both worlds’. They often combine on-premise solutions, or private clouds, with public clouds. This can give businesses more control. For example, you could use the public cloud for high-volume, lower security needs and the private cloud for sensitive, business-critical data and activities. This is quite a good option for businesses looking to gradually migrate to the cloud.
Data and security compliance
It’s a sobering reality, yet cybercriminals will exploit almost any opportunity to steal data. We know from our friends in cybersecurity at Suffolk Police, that cyber threats are increasing in number and severity. So much so that KPMG has recently launched a rapid response to Covid-19 themed cyber-attacks.
With this in mind, what role does cloud computing security play? Well, migrating to the cloud can lessen the risks against your organisation and should feature within your cybersecurity strategy. If you don’t have one of these, we can help you with that!.
For a start, software updates and security patches are automatically rolled out and managed at source. This is not only reassuring, but it also means you don’t have to worry about spending time updating them internally.
There’s GDPR and data compliance to consider too. Moving to the cloud and using purposefully engineered cloud solutions, will quickly check the box for many compliance regulations.
Likewise, cloud data backup plans ensure your data is automatically backed up at regular intervals, reducing your risk of data loss and saving you both time and money.
If the worst does happen (for whatever reason), your data can be fetched from the cloud to get you back up and running in no time.
Scalability and productivity
One of the many benefits of cloud computing is the scalability and flexibility of data storage. Whether your business is growing, or perhaps you run a seasonal business, the cloud allows you to increase or decrease your capacity to meet demand.
Businesses that realise the benefits of cloud computing fundamentally change the way they operate as employers. Now, more than ever, employees want far greater flexibility in their working life. They want to access files, systems and data in the least restrictive way possible. With your network and data stored in the cloud, employees can access everything they need, on any device, at any time. Sharing and collaborating becomes the norm, as does more effective productive working.
Reduced IT costs
Running your own data centre and maintaining hardware is expensive. By moving to the cloud, you dramatically reduce these costs. If managed correctly, with a strategic IT plan, you can demonstrate an ROI across different cost centres.
Plus, the initial setup and ongoing management fees are far lower than on-premise hardware solutions. In many cases, you can enjoy a pay as you go subscription-based model.
In addition to the outright maintenance costs, moving to the cloud can be extremely cost-effective because of the increase in workforce productivity. As a business, you can access previously inaccessible technologies that improve your business capability.
Take your first steps to the cloud
Having helped many Essex and Suffolk businesses in moving to the cloud, they’ll all say just how much it has changed their business. In fact, where many businesses have struggled to toggle between home and office in recent months, our clients have found it relatively seamless.
The question now is no longer ‘if’ but ‘when’ to move to the cloud. If you would like to find out more about our IT cloud solutions, please contact us today to speak to a cloud specialist.