The Complications of The Cloud
The majority of businesses are now using some form of cloud computing and the trend is set to grow. GE Capital’s report in the Mid-Market in 2014 reported that businesses in its survey are “increasingly attracted to the benefits of cloud-based services, especially data storage”.
Just five years ago it was a different story. Most businesses had their data stored on on-site servers and used out of the box licensed software applications that were all stored on individual machines.
Today, we estimate that 95% of businesses use some form of cloud service, whether it’s a cloud server, corporate email, a line of business application or an easy online storage solution like Dropbox.
What the Cloud has delivered for business:
- Increased mobility – businesses are now more mobile thanks to web based access to software like salesforce.com, Office365, Xero and cloud based versions of many other common applications
- Increased productivity – because people can now access information from anywhere they can be productive when they are not at their desk
- Lower capital expenses – businesses are less likely to need reserves for one-off capital outlay on IT infrastructure, replaced with an ongoing monthly operating expense from cloud based payment models
- Increased flexibility – businesses can now be more flexible by scaling their needs and their costs easily through a pay per user per month model
- Built in backup – many cloud services offer levels of backup meaning you don’t necessary need to worry about implementing your own backup
What the Cloud hasn’t delivered:
- Simplicity – Cloud computing is not necessarily simple. To achieve a true cloud solution, multiple cloud vendors are required – and these all need to hopefully work harmoniously together. For example, you may have a different vendor for your email, CRM, security software etc…. Each with their own management, configuration, portals and logins. How do you integrate your email to your CRM or accounting package and so on? There’s a lot to consider.
- Security – IT departments have far more applications and security issues to deal with then ever before. The up take of mobile and BYOD devices has introduced new security risks. Employees are now carrying company data on personal devices, and the truth is you have no control or security over your data. In many cases, your data is inadvertently stored in places that are not secure and therefore vulnerable. For example, a user that is compromised with a virus on a personal device could easily and likely spread this infection to the rest of your business network. As data moves to the cloud and is stored internationally, it’s more vulnerable to security breaches. Storing your data in overseas unknown locations also means you’re not entirely protected by Australian Federal Law.
- Standardisation and control – Having no central control means employees are free to modify, install, and save any program or file in whichever manner wherever they like. In most cases, this data is not protected or backed up. This therefore results in an inconsistent and un-manageable environment for your company. It’s getting harder for an IT department or operations manager to have central control.
- Total mobility and compatibility – The cloud has struggled to deliver total mobility or compatibility. Some software isn’t cloud friendly which means what you can access on the road is not the same as what’s on your desktop, limiting true mobility.
This hybrid approach to the cloud which most companies run today, where some aspects of IT is cloud based and some isn’t – possesses risks to business as well as efficiencies.
Now, businesses can take advantage of the cloud without the complications and the risks. A complete cloud solution is now available. Centrix is excited to now be able to offer businesses simplicity with their IT like never before.
Contact us to find out more about our IT service packages in Sydney and how to simplify your IT to take full advantage of all the benefits the cloud has to offer.