RUNNING YOUR BUSINESS IN THE CLOUD

Cloud service business accessing software and services delivered over the Internet from any location and through nearly any device is changing how businesses operate. With it, companies can respond to opportunities more quickly with fewer resources and less financial outlay. This is good news for small businesses wanting to forgo expensive servers and storage systems. Cloud computing has created a technology revolution for small businesses, offering access to a range of capabilities that typically only larger companies can afford. Using an Internet connection and a web browser, cloud service for a small can tap into software and services as they need them and pay for what they use on a monthly basis, like utility services. A business who joined the cloud can access everything from data backup to customer relationship management systems. Consider the following benefits to see how your company might use the cloud service for small business.

Significant number of challenges that need to be addressed before business cloud services becomes robust enough for large enterprises. It is also clear that not all applications are currently ripe for moving to the cloud. General-purpose applications (like office, email, collaboration technologies) are prime candidates, since there are rarely any instances of application requirements in such technologies that are specific only to an organization. Standalone applications like the popular CRM Salesforce.com might be easy to deploy on a cloud, but it is a different proposition altogether to migrate a smorgasbord of internally developed applications, third-party software and legacy applications with all their intricate interdependencies to the business cloud service. The business cloud service is based applications will also have to cross the threshold in terms of security and reliability either actual or perceived of their traditional counterparts.

Managed service is not a product; it’s how it’s delivered; it’s a contractual relationship with service level agreements. Once a company has some experience and is able to compares its costs, such as air conditioning and power, to the security and cost of the cloud, it may decide to purchase its applications, application platform, computing needs, and storage as a service in a pay-per-use model. This is a true “managed service cloud,” which opens the full benefits of the cloud to the business. As defined by the National Institute of Standards and Technologies, a manage service cloud is a pay-per-use model for enabling available, convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.

For example, Google e-mail provides access to 7 GB of free storage; document word processing online; spreadsheets; presentations; drawings; and HTML forms, which are all available to edit, import and export, and store in the cloud. This strategy promotes continuity between work environments that can contribute to an organization’s productivity. Conversely, the use of Google e-mail presents potential security threats and risks as companies try to maintain virtual private storage and security within the work documents. For SMBs, the move to cloud is providing enterprise collaboration without the IT oversight. Each ISP has developed secure virtual private instances for the companies that prefer to outsource the business of collaboration, application and storage to its ISP.

Economics have forced many companies to either put off product purchases or cut nonbusiness core related services. CEOs/CFOs are now making decisions about the manage service cloud, which is increasingly including purchasing as-a-service IT for transport from a service provider. More businesses are finding that outsourcing to a trusted provider that specializes in transport technology and customer management is strategically sound and ultimately provides the company with financial benefits.

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