"The Cloud" refers to servers or services that are accessed over the Internet through a 3rd party provider such as Microsoft or Amazon. There are many reasons to migrate your small business: greater ability to collaborate, more efficient cost management, and accurate planned growth without unknown capital expenditures. Small business owners should consider all the advantages of a move to the cloud.
Fairly often, conversation of the Cloud seems overwhelming or unclear, but it’s likely that your business is already using the cloud in some capacity. Systems like Microsoft 365 for email or centrally managed security dashboards are all cloud based.
However if you are not currently using any cloud features and are looking to increase efficiency, there are a few key touch points to make sure you start off on the right path.
Often we are asked by customers to “move us to the cloud” because everyone else is doing it, and they do not want to be left behind. That is not a good cloud migration strategy.
So ask yourself, on behalf of your business, “why do we need to be in the cloud?”
Every business is different, so find specific answers to this question. Take time to research the benefits of cloud migration, and if you’re able, talk to a Cloud professional to learn more.
It may turn out that you are not ready for a migration and staying on-premise is still the right solution (for now), but fully understanding your options and the benefits of the Cloud is the first step in developing a strategy.
If you do choose to migrate, plan accordingly. Cloud migration is typically driven by a line-of-business application specific to your business or industry. Be sure to understand the impact on other applications you use. A common issue we see during migration is that email or printing must be reconfigured.
The cloud is a new system for your business, so make sure you take a migration slowly.
An easy way to start is with your email system. Migrating to Microsoft Office 365 is a very easy task and can be accomplished quickly and effectively by an experienced provider.
Talk to your business software account representatives (accounting, CRM, time-entry) and ask them for their current and long-term cloud strategies. More than likely, they have or are developing a Software-as-a-Service (cloud) offering. What you don’t want is their legacy application offered remotely and then rebranded as a cloud computing solution.
As previously mentioned, cloud services are internet-reliant, so it is important to make sure your business has access to reliable internet. A second fail-over connection is highly recommended. If your internet goes out, the impact of losing access to your data and applications can be costly - your business can lose actual revenue for every second you are disconnected.
The migration to a Cloud based business can be a time-consuming, arduous journey, but in the end, the decision can improve your business by making it more efficient, secure and profitable.
If you are ready to migrate to the cloud or interested in understanding more fully the benefits it may offer, click below or fill out the form to talk to one of our experienced representatives.