Cloud computing has altered the landscape of business technology drastically since its early days. It has given rise to exciting new capabilities that can impact speed, efficiency, and capacity along with new associated security concerns.
In particular, it has made remote access easier and more accessible than ever before. You may have heard all the hype and wonder if a cloud model could be what your business needs. You’re definitely not alone.
Migrating to the Cloud
More and more companies are turning to cloud-based services for their business data needs and with good reason. It’s important to do your homework, however, before making decisions that have the potential to impact your business significantly. You want to make sure you’re making the best decision AND understand the ins and outs of the new solution. Use this guide to cloud migration to get started.
1) Which cloud do you need?
First, you need to evaluate all your existing software and licenses to verify what you are able to put in the public cloud and if you have anything that is either a) not compatible, or b) not permitted per the license agreement. You have several different cloud options available to you.
There are private (locally stored) cloud services, public cloud services, and hybrid cloud services which allow you to mix and match based on your needs. You may have some software you need to keep stored on local servers while the rest can go to a public cloud.
2) Can you verify your usage?
It’s important to be able to measure your usage statistics in order to verify your billing. This will serve as a safeguard against errors AND keep your cloud provider honest. You can’t afford to remain willingly unaware. This will also help you evaluate service delivery to determine if you’re getting your money’s worth.
3) Security and compliance matters.
Most cloud providers have built-in security measures that will give you much more bang for your buck than what you might get on your own. Nevertheless, it’s important to understand how they will protect your business data against breaches, hackers, and malware. Ask about how they handle detecting and patching network vulnerabilities. You also need to understand the compliance requirements of your industry and make sure your service provider will meet them.
4) Downtime considerations.
Outages and downtime are inevitable but should be minimal. Find out what their guarantees are and how they handle excessive downtime. At what point can you expect compensation?
5) Business continuity and disaster recovery.
Storing your business data in a public cloud service protects you against data loss due to natural and manmade disasters at your physical locations. However, what happens if there are natural other disasters at the location of the cloud storage? How are they prepared to handle disruptions of daily services? Find out what their business continuity plan is regarding natural disasters and other interruptions on their end.
Always the Best
It’s important to upgrade your business technology to stay ahead of your competition. Cloud computing could be just what you need to improve system efficiencies, network security, and productivity. Use this guide to migrating to the cloud to get started determining if this is the next step for you.
Enstep is your Houston area resource for business IT solutions including cloud based services. Contact Us for more information on migrating to the cloud or for help determining your business IT needs.