June 25, 2015
Switching over to cloud for your critical business operations, like emails and document storage, can be extremely beneficial. It can help to cut costs, organize workflow and eliminate the need for hiring specialized IT personnel. Above all these, the biggest benefit of moving operations to cloud is major data concerns such as security, support and backup are automatically taken care of. With a number of companies offering cloud based services, it can be difficult to choose the most reliable one for your business.
Here are some of the important questions that you must ask while screening a provider:
What level of services do they provide?
Determining your cloud computing needs can help you decide on what type of services you require. If you require more than just data storage service, there are several providers offering complete cloud computing services such as virtual software, applications and servers.
What is their pricing structure?
Choose a provider that allows you to pay-as-you-go. This means that you will be charged on the basis on the services you avail and your storage needs. The fees can be charged hourly, monthly or yearly, depending on your cloud service provider. Charges for cloud computing may be as low as $1 and go up to $ 100, as per your usage.
How secure is their cloud?
To ensure the safety of your company’s stored data, verify if your cloud provider follows standard and regularly updated security policies. You must look for measures like anti-virus software, firewalls, data encryption, two-factor user authentication, backups etc. Also ask them which employees at the company will have access to the information in the cloud.
What happens if the data is lost?
In the event that your cloud service provider inadvertently loses or obliterates your useful data, you must be sure how exactly they will resolve the issue. You must ask them about the provisions in the company’s Service Level Agreement (SLA) for such cases and if they would recompense for your loss. Also inquire if they have implemented any policies to mitigate the occurrences of such losses.
Is their cloud flexible enough to meet your business needs?
As you expand your business, you might need more storage space on cloud. Therefore, you must choose a company that can upgrade its services to accommodate your requirements. Ask them what other services and how much extra storage capacity they can provide over time. Also, it should be easy to add additional employees to your account.
Besides these, you should ensure that you can access all your business information from any device by just logging into your cloud provider’s sign in page.