Should you go Cloud?
The Cloud, why is everyone talking about the Cloud? Where do we start? Let’s address the elephant in the room. There is an active movement out there that is making “cloud” a dirty word. Why? Well, it can be seen that your traditional IT company will get a reduced income from this. Think about it. The more services that are cloud hosted, the less on site infrastructure that need to be maintained. Less server hardware that ages, less software that gets outdated. So why should you look at the Cloud? In simple terms, you will get less and less choice. The main benefit as we see it is it allows business to easily have access to infrastructure that would normally be outside their financial grasps. It allows small business to use systems that in previous years only be viable to medium businesses. It allows medium businesses to access infrastructure of large business, large business software for enterprise size businesses, and enterprise business to almost be able to behave, believe it or not, like a small business. It gives a flexibility of deployment, traditionally only available to as small business. Multi site? not a problem. rather than having to set up a multi-site WAN, and a server on each site, all you need now is an internet connection. Why not just do it then? The battle here is not technology. It is perception of convention and I guess in a large part an “I stick to what I know” mentality.
Cloud computing is for the majority user based, with monthly subscription fee’s per user or user blocks. We often see potential clients raise their eyebrows when this is mentioned, when at the same time a conversation about an alternative to upgrade their server for an average of +$20,000 seems “normal”. Servers need maintenance. Servers run out of storage. Servers hardware on average need replacing every 5 years. That is if you don’t want to upgrade any software on it, which often forces you to upgrade earlier. With Cloud, you don’t have this. It is flexible with users. 99.99% of the time your cloud software is upgraded automatically when new versions become available, back-ups are usually included, and best of all, you can access it anywhere with no trouble with a normal internet connection. The bottom line is, you do not have to have a large capital outlay for out of the box cloud software. The costs, including upgrades you would normally not get, are spread over a large period.. You can try to keep resisting it, but after a while you will not have a choice. Besides the user benefits, it is a better option for software developers. It virtually negates all possibilities of people using pirated versions of software that they have developed. All you everyday programs will soon have a cloud component to it. Even software like Photoshop now works on monthly subscriptions, rather than a once off price. Don’t find it, embrace it. It is better for productivity, it is better for cashflow and more importantly, your business will not outgrow the cloud.