Nearly every business is on the cloud these days.
Only a decade ago, most companies relied entirely on IT systems running on servers and software that lived on-site. Today, it is much harder to find a business that does not use the cloud for at least part of their IT.
By definition, cloud mean an IT system or application that lives in a remote datacenter managed by a third party provider, as opposed to residing on a server in the customer’s location.
When it’s done correctly, a cloud works wonders for a business. Cloud systems are reliable, secure and efficient. They easily scale with growing companies. Most companies we surveyed are using a cloud email service, such as Office 365 or Google Apps, both of which are great systems. However, there is so much more than email that small businesses can and should be doing in the cloud.
Customer Relationships Management (CRM) software is used by companies large to manage their customers and prospect databases. There are numerous CRM systems that now exist in the cloud. While some of these systems are very simple and entry-level, others are more complex and require expertise for implementation. Cloud-based CRM software programs are accessible from any computer or smartphone without requiring remote viewing access or VPN software, which is valuable as many companies have distributed workforces.
In the past, in order for a group of people to access a shared directory of files, you needed a file server. Today, there are dozens of cloud-based file sharing systems which not only replace many of the functions of a traditional file server), but also give you the ability to access your files on your mobile device, and share certain files or folders with groups outside of your company.
Backup and disaster recovery is often overlooked by companies – they spend time and money on the systems that solve a problem, but they often wait until it is too late to backup those very same systems. Cloud services now exist automatically back up your server and desktop data to a secure remote datacenter, and restore it to anywhere. Some of the higher-end services not only back up your files, they maintain business continuity by allowing your workforce remote working capability (in the event of an emergency).
All of our devices (computers and smartphones) are constantly connected to the Internet. We use them more and more, storing sensitive and critical data on them, and the unfortunate reality of this is that is makes them all the more appealing for hackers. IT security is more important now than it ever was, and there are great cloud options to protect your business on many levels, including securing your email, your internet connection, and your desktop and servers.
Every business needs a phone system, and the cloud-based VoIP system brings large-business communication technology to everyone. These cloud systems offer reliability and sophistication to