Flashback to 2008: 88 percent of businesses preferred an on-premises server solution. Merely six years later, in 2014, the preference flipped: 87 percent of businesses wanted a cloud-based solution. The reasons are many: improved bandwidth infrastructure, lower pricing on subscription-based solutions, and convenience. Moving to the cloud just makes IT’s job easier.
Before updating Enterprise Agreements or refreshing hardware, businesses are faced with the tough question of whether or not purchasing and maintaining new hardware is worth it. This decision-making is resulting in many organizations buying into the cloud, rather than investing in new hardware.
If your organization is part of the 13 percent not in the cloud, an on-premises solution may truly be best for its needs. However, there are certain advantages to a cloud solution, and we’ll break these four improvements down for you:
1. More production out of your IT staff: Servers are better than ever, with more memory and faster speeds in a smaller footprint than their predecessors. But to maintain that performance, your IT staff must monitor the server, ensure it’s clean, regularly update the OS, reboot periodically, scan for viruses, and remove old files. That’s all labor intensive, and we haven’t even mentioned the hardware and software upgrade process that occurs every few years, or when your server operating system sees its end of life.
Housing your files and services in the cloud enables your IT staff to focus on other pressing tasks, such as end-point security, tracking and auditing software licenses, and deploying new hardware.
2. No hardware refresh: Servers tend to last a long time, but starting at the five-year mark, IT should start thinking about upgrading to new equipment. Choosing the cloud frees you from this expense, and ensures maximum performance because most, if not all, cloud providers refresh their equipment on a regular basis.
3. Energy savings: Many businesses don’t think about the energy costs associated with housing servers on-premises. Servers run constantly, creating energy expenses and cooling costs, on top of other maintenance costs. All of this constant power can add up and cost businesses a lot of money per year. One estimate found that a single server can cost at least $731 in energy costs per year.
When moving to the cloud, make sure your cloud-based solution is upfront about costs, including energy fees. Data centers should be transparent in their cost structures and you should know exactly how energy usage is billed.
4. Stay up to date: Because most cloud systems are subscription based, cloud providers regularly upgrade software, so your organization always has the latest and greatest version of the server operating system. This improved functionality will keep you and your workforce up to date on technology trends and software updates.
What’s stopping you?
Is there a future for on-premises solutions? Absolutely, and some businesses will always rely on in-house servers and storage. However, the majority of businesses now want to forgo the purchase of new hardware and switch to a cloud solution. From energy savings to eliminating a hardware replacement schedule, moving from on-premises to the cloud has become a smart and money-saving business decision for many organizations.