Charlie Tzoumas, Regional Vice President
Comcast Business Services
Not so long ago, it was a career killer to say that a businessperson had their head in the clouds. That’s no longer true. Placing key applications from your business in the “clouds” can save you a lot of money here on Earth.
“Cloud computing” is a new generation of computing that uses remote servers for data storage, hosting applications and data management. This new model offers significant advantages for fast-paced startups, small- and medium-sized business and enterprises alike. No matter the size of the business, cloud computing offers efficiencies, cost savings and peace of mind. Here, we’ll outline the benefits of certain cloud applications so that you can better protect, access and leverage your data.
Backup is one popular use of cloud computing that everyone should consider. Whether you’ve been in business for six months or six years, you likely have amassed data that is critical to your operations. You need to have a backup plan in case something unforeseen happens to where you store this data.
Traditional planning prompted business owners to place important data on CDs to be stored off site to guard against risk of theft, fire, flood or other event. Business owners were prone to forget to do their backups and often those backups were stored onsite. Today, business owners have lots of options to securely backup their data into a ‘cloud’ or servers hosted by trusted companies. One service, Mozy, allows users to upload photos, business documents, financial records and other digital files. And, backups can be performed according to an automatic schedule so there’s no need to take time from your busy business to backup files.
For businesses ready to move beyond backup and leverage other IT services in the cloud, there are tremendous cost savings. The Yankee Group recently analyzed one year’s cost for two email and messaging options for a hypothetical business of 25 employees. In one case, which we could call customary, the business relied on Microsoft Exchange and Outlook with servers located on premises. The other option allowed the business to use Microsoft Communication Services from Comcast Business Class – a cloud-based service.
In the example where technology is located in-house, the business might spend $14,000 a year on software licensing, maintenance and cost of servers, backup and support. With the cloud computing option – costs were cut to $2,463. That’s an 80 percent reduction in cost.
Cost savings might also be realized based on usage. Should your usage scale up or down, you pay for only what you need. Plus, when your business grows and you quickly need capacity – your cloud computing provider can support you.
Should you be ready to move to a cloud-based IT model, here’s a checklist of questions to consider. After all, your data is one of your most strategic assets. It’s wise to choose your vendors and plot your strategy wisely.
Cloud computing is a hot topic in the technology landscape because it can provide real business benefits. As you look to optimize your resources, this is an opportunity that is certainly worth exploring.
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