The economic uncertainty the world is facing has shaped the need for responsive, fast and properly secure IT infrastructure. These infrastructures are user-friendly, environment-friendly and they focus solely on the business. What makes these infrastructures important is that companies are under pressure to find their competitive edge. They are faced with the myriad of opportunities that come with Technology. Cautious to jump at the latest buzz phrases and hyped solutions many have cautiously investigated recent technology breakthroughs many of which have one thing in common.
Some companies are hesitant to join the latest buzz phrases or hyped solutions while some others decide to research about the recent technology breakthroughs. These 2 kinds of companies have a single thing in common which is redistribution of IT functions. This is the best time to give an overhaul technology strategy that is focused on hosted solutions. This has led to the cloud computing.
Cloud Computing is one of the best ways to gain the upper hand in today’s highly competitive market and companies are taking advantage of it since it prevents downtime. If a company experiences just a few minutes of downtime, it means the company experiences loss of vital sales. Any business that experiences loss of data for a long time will find itself on the verge of collapsing. With cloud computing there is a revolution in traditional corporate data. Cloud Computing has totally changed the structure of the traditional corporate data centre that is found within the company’s location.
In the place of this traditional method, systems have been restructured to protect the centers of the outsourced data which can either be in the form of public or private cloud configuration. A public cloud is one that has more than two companies that share the same resources such as servers while a private cloud has its own server to be used exclusively for a single company. Every business owner or the technology department will have to conduct research before choosing the kind of cloud configuration that will be the best choice for your business. The business owner and technology departments will also need to find out about the privacy and legal requirement and make decisions about similar issues that cloud configuration can solve.
Technology departments in most companies are faced with similar issues such as personnel downsize, budget cuts and the pressure of improving Technology so it can prove its worth in finding solutions to business challenges. Quite a number of IT departments have no idea of the vision of the future of the business. They simply focus on the daily network upkeep and spend quite a lot to keep the core systems functional.
The downside to this approach is that there is no possibility of innovation, no process improvements and there may be no hope of meeting the strategic objectives of the business. Competitive advantage can be gained by moving out daily operations to allow the execution of strategic initiatives.
Cloud Computing and Hosting
Cloud Computing has amazing and endless potential which is what makes it the best solution for some of the important business challenges that exist today. Some of these business challenges of today include launching new collaborative portals, upgrading data entry applications or overhauling demanding e-mail systems. Everything is made possible today within the cloud. However, in the good old days engineers of various fields such as database, integrations, applications and security were needed in person to begin new initiatives. With hosted solutions from Cloud Computing, all the information is provided without the staff and the running costs you business incurs with many personnel. Getting a partnership that comes with a reliable IT solutions provider will be beneficial to your initiatives.
A good hosting provider will serve as a direct extension of your IT department and also offer results to the business challenges you encounter in the improved IT strategic approach. This means your success with the hosting provider will also affect the success of your IT department.
Cloud Computing and Email
In today’s workplace, Email is the primary means of communication and communication becomes complex on a daily basis. Emails are very important because they are used to pass information to both staff and clients. It is a wonderful means of communicating within the work place without any need to over stretch your staff’s time or work. Quite a number of applications have been created specifically to work with the company’s messaging system which sends notifications, reminders, automatically generate bills and receipts as well as send important project warning. If there is no expertise in any of these parts, there is a possibility of loss of integration opportunities which in turn leaves businesses in danger of loss of communication both internally and externally. This will lead to poor customer relations and a fall in profit.
Without doubt, the Cloud has been successful when it comes to taking over the traditional business email workspace. The time you dedicate to IT infrastructure is better than the time you put into older systems and once you become efficient with it you are a step ahead of your competitors. On the downside, server replacements, software cost and the continuous application training are reasons why it is quite expensive to maintain.
A Quick Example
There was a medium sized company that had a challenge to continue operating with an old Microsoft Exchange platform. The database of the company’s mailbox had almost exceeded its maximum size without any room for adding message stores. The company’s 3 servers that worked for the Exchange platform had served for about 10 years and they had hardware issues. It seemed like the best way forward was to invest in both software and hardware. But the IT management understood the importance of Microsoft Exchange hosting solution and they found a good hosting provider to help them solve their challenge. With a lot of planning and execution, the local servers were moved to the outsourced data center and the company got impressive results. There was no longer a need to buy new servers or get the latest software upgrade. There was no need for the company to invest in hardware replacement. The only cost before the company was the monthly hosting costs which was good for the company’s budget.
The Microsoft Exchange program also came with a foremost anti-spam solution and an e-compliant archiving system which was another way to cut costs. Within a month after the change, the company’s customers’ calls reduced by 10% and the mails kept pouring in due to the work of their Exchange experts. The experts ran system updates and routine maintenance regularly. They resolved challenges and monitored the company’s KPI.
All these led to better customer service. The business is doing well with an expansive adaptive email system as well as a comprehensive electronic audit trail. The tier-4 data location which is where the email service is found has become a welcome addition to the organization’s disaster management scheme. This service saved the company a whopping $50,000 anually as well as reduced carbon emissions through the retirement of the previous servers.
We must not fall into the trap of gauging success by using network uptime and backup reliability which are the traditional measurements. As Technology leaders and innovators, we must be able to put in place an IT strategic plan with the contribution of the executives of the company so that we can discover new possibilities. If you can combine Technology (which brings ease to the business) and Cloud Computing (the way to yield quantifiable results) your business is on the verge of greatness
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