Cloud computing and IT managed services
IT managed services based on cloud computing are catching on with many small and medium-sized businesses as a way to offload the burdens of buying and maintaining software and hardware.
The idea is simple: instead of buying and managing your own IT assets, your company pays to use a system owned by a third party. A simple free version of the idea is Google Drive, which allows users
anywhere to work and collaborate on word processing, spreadsheet and other applications hosted on Google’s servers.
The cloud’s key benefit is that it saves companies money because they don’t have to purchase, implement, maintain and update hardware or software. For example, some experts estimate a company can save about 65% on an ERP system by implementing it through the cloud rather than buying the software.
Cloud computing vendors offer two main types of services – IT managed services
- Infrastructures-a-service: Servers and network equipment that clients access via the web.
- Software-as-a-service : On-demand software that clients access online. For example, businesses can use such a service to run an ERP system or accounting software without needing to buy it.
Depending on IT managed services, other benefits can include the following.
- The provider secures and backs up your data.
- Employees can have access to your company’s computer systems from any location with Internet access.
A growing number of organisations are adopting cloud computing because of its low upfront costs and scalability as the business grows,” Burgoyne says. It helps organisations avoid the headaches of managing hardware. I don’t want to be an expert in managing technology systems.
I want to be an expert on managing my business.” Despite the benefits, many entrepreneurs remain skeptical. One of the main question marks is about hosting sensitive business data offsite.
How secure will it be? Cloud computing vendors respond that data tends to be more secure “in the cloud” because small and medium-sized businesses often neglect computer security and data backup — two basic services that cloud computing offers.
But cloud computing can come with other drawbacks. These may include downtime if your Internet connection is disrupted and potential difficulties in moving your data to another service provider if you decide to switch. With these issues in mind, you should research vendors thoroughly to ensure you are dealing with a solid, experienced company that’s going to be around for the long run.
It may also be useful to get references from other companies in your industry. Another form of IT outsourcing is increasingly popular: managed services. This is the practice of outsourcing the management of IT infrastructure.
Traditionally, smaller companies have either hired in-house tech staff or used an outside repair firm when things go wrong. By contrast, managed services providers monitor and remotely manage IT infrastructure for a monthly fee.
The managed services provider is responsible for the performance of the systems it manages. Many businesses and organisations consider that to be an important insurance policy, especially as technology becomes more complex and critical to a company’s business.
What’s the biggest technology security problem that Businesses face?
If you said computer hackers, guess again. The biggest problems by far come from a company’s own employees. The good news: They’re usually not doing it on purpose.
Most of the security breaches involve accidents: an employee mistakenly emailing confidential client information outside the company; a cashier leaving a customer’s credit card information on a publicly viewable computer screen; or a manager inadvertently deleting important files.
One of the most common breaches: accidentally downloading malware — those nasty computer viruses and Trojan horses that can cause mayhem in your computer network. Also very common: neglecting to back up data regularly. Contact Musato Technologies to learn more about our IT managed services.