Cloud Computing – The First Step to a Smooth Transition
Technology has made the world of work more flexible than it has ever been before. Because of this, the adoption of remote working was not only possible, but in many ways a better option than the traditional office setting. At the onset of the pandemic, business owners were forced to make the transition as quickly as they possibly could, and most did an okay job at best. They needed to keep their organisations operational during some of the most perilous times for businesses ever.
A transition to Cloud computing needs to be well thought out – after all, you want to know that what you are putting your money into is worth it. Yes, there are providers out there that want to sell you the most expensive option regardless of whether it is good for you or not, but this isn’t always the case as there are some that genuinely want you to be educated and advised correctly.
What is Cloud computing?
Cloud computing is the latest advancement in IT tools, services, and infrastructure. Traditionally, businesses would need to purchase, support, and maintain their own on-premise server to store their data. The Cloud provides a subscription-based service designed to cater flexibly around the way your team works and the demands of your organization.
You must have heard the term ‘on the Cloud.’ This refers to the organisation’s IT services being provided over the internet as opposed to it running from locally based servers.
When ‘on the Cloud’ your computing resources, data storage, email and telephony communication, software databases and applications, are delivered on-demand. This is revolutionary – never before has your team been so agile and flexible, and with a near-instant roll out of new IT services your teams’ days can be more productive than ever before as they now only need to spend time doing their job role. Your monthly payment will only be for what you are actually using, making the scalability of the Cloud a real money saver for your business.
Having your IT provided as SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) will guarantee that your applications are always up-to-date and capable. This service, the back-end infrastructure, and security mechanisms are all included in that rolling fee. No one likes surprises so being sure the fee you agreed on won’t change (without agreement) puts a lot of business owners’ minds at ease.
Of course, the commercial benefits are the clear leading reasons that businesses convert to the Cloud, but its ability to allow your team to work from anywhere in the world with an internet connection is a close second. Your team can access all of the applications, files, and documents that they do in the workplace from the comfort of their own homes!
Before undertaking a Cloud transition, you must understand your business, but this isn’t as straightforward as you may think.
A Cloud migration – Understand your own business
You should take a step back, look internally at your company and acknowledge how it operates. Ask yourself questions like, “What do I need to prolong my success?”, “What does my team need to achieve their daily goals?” and “What regulations am I obliged to adhere to?”
Most organisations carry a lot of responsibility for all the sensitive data they hold across their business. That data being safely protected should be the biggest priority you have, because if it gets stolen, deleted, or somehow goes missing, the consequences could be disastrous. You should also check with your Cloud provider where your data is stored, with some data centers being abroad, you might find yourself in hot water for storing it outside of the country.
Your business goals
“What do I want to achieve with my business?” Answering this question isn’t as simple as you might think either – profit or money may be the overriding goal, but what small achievements could help you get there faster? Learning what these goals are will help you to make a better decision on your Cloud transition and knowing what you need to achieve your goals will enable your decision to be based less on price and more on value.
Without your users you wouldn’t even have a business; they are on the front line every day, so therefore it is essential you take the time to hear what they have to say. You should prompt them periodically to learn all you can, ask them questions like “Are the tools we provide you with good enough?”, “Are they fit for purpose?”, “Are they difficult to use?” – only then will you learn what you need to know to make their work environment as productive as you can.
Be mindful that some Cloud providers offer different services than others, so you need to check that the one you choose offers levels of collaboration, communication, and productivity that can rival the office setting. Get to know your team as well as you can – we know this is difficult sometimes, depending on the size of your workforce, how often you and they are in the office, and how busy they are daily. It can be almost impossible, but you must try, because the better you know them the more likely you will be to provide them with what they need.
Founded in 1984, Horizon started off as a custom software company doing work for Snap-on Tools. We rapidly added helpdesk and network support to the business and have continued expanding our capabilities ever since – all while also successfully transitioning to a second generation of owners.
Our team has over a hundred years of combined experience in virtually every field of IT. Clients of every size trust us, from ‘mom ‘n’ pop’ local businesses all the way to multinational corporations who have heavy security and inter-connectivity requirements. Our employees deliver a truly customer-focused direction in everything we do.
After more than thirty years in business, Horizon continues to grow both our client base and our knowledge. We look forward to working with you to help your business enjoy that same success. Contact us now and see what we can do for you.