As sellers improve their reputations for security, fairness and reliability, many businesses are moving applications to the server cloud. Certain applications, when moved into a Windows cloud server environment, will free up bandwidth and decrease maintenance overhead. With the cloud’s storage capacity and speed, and with guaranteed service level agreements, businesses will be moving more and more functionality into the virtual world.
Email and conferencing apps are well-suited for cloud server hosting. Email has gone beyond the POP3/SMTP setup; many sites offer Exchange capability, or very upscale non-Exchange applications. Also, allowing a third party to scan incoming email for spam will dramatically reduce bandwidth needs. Like email, conferencing software is often tiresome to maintain and to set up. Switching conferencing to a third party will guarantee that when software is down, service will be quickly restored, without lowering employee productivity.
CRM functions do well in clouds. Purchasing multiple CRM licenses is a hassle, and time spent on maintenance is not worth the expense. By using a web-based app, companies will be able to divert precious bandwidth and time to more important functions, such as actually implementing strategies related to CRM data.
Web and video hosting applications make sense in the cloud. Virtual web hosting features dramatically increased uptime, fewer security risks, and direct, open access to servers. Also, companies have stopped blocking video hosting sites, because employees have so many legitimate uses for them, in the workplace. For a small fee, companies may enhance their videos, and decide where those videos will appear, so that quality is not compromised.
Development test labs for new software take up a great deal of bandwidth and setup time. Quality vendors, however, will already have test labs set up, and they may be configured by pointing and clicking. By moving development off-site, companies spare themselves the hassle of dealing with permutations in operating systems, patches, and applications.
Common application components are billed on a per-usage basis. In fact, many application functions, which used to be available as components or libraries that had to be purchased, are now offered via the web. By taking a variety of lower-level functions and developing them into a complete offering, these components settle the “Build vs. Buy” dilemma once and for all. Basic office applications, for instance, will deliver word processing or spreadsheet power, without the need to purchase the entire Microsoft Office suite.
Batch processing applications are easily cloud-worthy. Rather that storing huge amounts of data in on-site servers, companies can store and access data in server cloud. The biggest obstacle is the process of transitioning data into clouds, and companies may make the transfer, over time, with synchronization. Also, tying data transfer to a physical process, such as the shipment of physical goods, will help to transition stored data into clouds.
Storing sensitive data outside of the company comes with an inherent risk. Companies might balk, for instance, at the idea of placing proprietary emails, or CRM data, into a server cloud. However, by choosing a solid provider, that willingly provides information about the hiring and oversight of privileged administrators, companies will guarantee that vendors will protect their most sensitive information.
Katie is writing on behalf of iCloud Hosting, a market leader in providing the server cloud.