MOVING YOUR BUSINESS TO THE CLOUD: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW.

December 23, 2020

In 2021, the cloud is where it’s at. If your business isn’t there already, it should be.

You can access your company’s data, programs and processes wherever you are, quicker and safer than ever before.

Moving your programs, whether that’s accounting software or your everyday office suite, to the cloud, streamlines your business in 2 main ways.

Software is always up to date and you remove the hassle and cost of operating onsite servers.

It’s not always hunky dory – we went through the pros and cons of different storage solutions here. But for a lot of things, your business will positively benefit from going fully online.

The question is how do you get there?

Here are some things you’ll need to consider.

KNOW WHAT YOU WANT

How is your business going to make best use of the cloud? Deciding this will determine what approach you need to take.

One way of using the cloud is software as a service but your business may not need this. It might be that you’re really just looking for a place to store your files.

Another question to ask is, if you’re moving your systems and software, will you need to change to a completely new provider or does your current software allow you to upgrade? One option could cost considerably more than the other.

CHOOSE THE RIGHT VENDOR

For ease and simplicity, you’re going to be picking one cloud provider to hold all your data and applications on their servers. Once everything’s there it’ll be very difficult to move that data to a different provider should you have second thoughts.

Vendor’s pricing models are heavily weighted on you being locked into their plan. You need to be confident you’re going with the right one for your business.

You’re also trusting them with the security and privacy of your organisation so you better make sure you know where their priorities lie.

PRIORITISE SECURITY

One of the benefits of being on the cloud is security. Because your data is locked away on a (hopefully) super secure server on the other side of the world, there’s no danger of localised hackers getting access to your onsite data.

It’s also encrypted so no one else, not even the provider, has access to it. That being said, the major downside is that the security is out of your hands so there are still risks involved.

You’re completely relying on the trustworthiness of the vendor. As such it’s important to consider the previous point. It’s also worth implementing local security measures such as Multi Factor Authentication and comprehensive back-ups, so you’re covered on your end.

CONSIDER A HYBRID SOLUTION

The best option for many businesses may not be to move everything to the cloud. Even if everything’s going to the cloud, some of your data or systems may benefit from being physically stored on your premises.

This can be achieved by having a hybrid solution. This is when the data is shared between on-site hardware and cloud storage. This way you get the best of both worlds – although often at a cost.

If you’ve got systems that cannot afford to go down, you’re probably safer having them onsite. That way you’ve got full control over what happens to them and can keep them under close inspection. Not everything will need this though.

GET TRAINING + SUPPORT

Not sure what you’re doing? No worries. You don’t need to be an expert to venture into the cloud but we appreciate it can be daunting.

Don’t feel like you have to flounder. Get some support. There’s plenty out there. IT support technicians would be happy to guide you through the process of integrating the cloud into your business and ensuring you get the right solution.

And if you totally want it taken off your hands many will do the whole install for you. It’s worth it for peace of mind.

If you want to know more about moving your business to the cloud, what apps and services you should take online and what we can do to help, give us a shout.

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