Over recent years, the cloud has truly evolved, manifesting itself as a scalable, flexible and secure technology for data storage and application delivery. So, what is holding you back in making the move to cloud? Are you still emotionally attached to your local server infrastructure even with its restricted possibilities and relatively short expiry date? In this article, I’d like to give you five reason why you should ditch your server.
1. Your server is a crumbling fortress
Keeping your local systems secure is not an easy task. There is a whole chain of applications, devices & appliances that require constant maintenance in order to safeguard your data. Servers need to be updated regularly in order to plug security holes and at some stage, older operating systems will no longer be supported and will therefore not be able to keep up with modern threats. Firewalls are the first line of defence but are often compromised by providing external access to your server using outdated and insecure technologies. It’s the digital equivalent of leaving the key in the front door so that anyone can easily walk in and out.
Cloud solutions provide a secure environment that continually evolves and improves its security. Companies such as Microsoft, spend a great deal of time, money and effort to secure their datacentres. Thinking that your data would be more secure on your own server is a mistake that can cost you dearly.
2. The never-ending running costs of local infrastructure
Running a server in your office comes at a cost. First, hardware has a limited lifespan. Servers should typically be replaced after 4-5 years and during that period often require repairs on disks, fans, power units, etc. Replacing the server hardware can be expensive as the hardware, project labour and downtime quickly add up to the total cost.
But buying & maintaining the hardware is only part of the running cost. Energy doesn’t come cheap, and servers are known power consumers and could cost you a couple of thousand dollars to run each year. Is your server located in an air-conditioned server room? Then add the cost of running the aircon 24/7 to the list.
Cloud solutions do come at a cost as well, but over the last couple of years these costs have come down dramatically and are now competitive with the cost of local infrastructure.
3. Scalability, or the lack thereof
Are you thinking of expanding your staff in the next five years or opening another office in a different city? Often, your current server will not be scaled to handle future growth, causing performance loss and irritation amongst staff. In the case of a new branch office, you will need to purchase additional servers and infrastructure to accommodate data storage etc. at the new location. This will double your cost as described above in point #2.
What happens if you decide to close a branch office? All the sudden you’re stuck with redundant hardware that you should repurpose in order to make it worth its price. Your MSP will most likely charge you for the labour needed to repurpose the hardware.
4. Become a modern workplace!
Streamlining your company’s processes, working from anywhere and anytime, collaborating with colleagues quickly and effectively…all these features of a modern workplace will result in higher productivity, more profit and engaged staff who exchange ideas and do their best work possible. Sounds great, right? The problem is that your server works as an anchor, dragging you down and preventing your business from reaching its full potential!
Trying to access files or applications stored on the server from any location outside of the office can be a painful exercise. Your server might have a failure, or your office’s internet connection might be down, causing your operation to grind to a halt. If your data & apps would live in the cloud, you could simply have your staff work from home or McDonalds without any interruption. Are your staff often late due to traffic? Why not have them start the day working from home or provide a plan where each staff member can work from home for a full day once a week? The amount of billable time this could save you can be staggering!
5. Backups and disaster recovery, no one wants to think about it
Your data is critical and losing it can have a crippling if not devastating impact on your business. Stories of companies losing all their data due to crypto viruses or building fires are the stuff of nightmares! Needless to say, having a good backup & disaster recovery strategy is very important.
Unfortunately, backups need to be continuously checked to make sure that they are running correctly. The office manager often must rotate USB drives and take them home in order to have offsite backups. Growing data means more money needs to be spent on local storage hardware. You might have to comply with Australian laws and therefore require to store data with retention of at least seven years, which requires even more storage space.
In the cloud, your data can be easily configured with data retention policies that do not require any further maintenance. You pay for the storage that you are currently using, so no need to buy expensive hardware needs to be upgraded/expanded at some stage. Your data will be stored across several datacentres which will provide the redundancy and security necessary to keep your data available & safe.
So, there you have it; 5 compelling reasons why you should ditch your server, embrace the digital cloud revolution and propel your business to new heights. For information about Cloud Migration, get in touch with us today.