3 Things to Understand When Moving to the Cloud
1. Data Migration
The costs of moving to cloud products like Office 365 do not end at the monthly subscriptions. Depending on the size of mailboxes or files there can be significant labour to move your data to a cloud hosted environment. The labour comes from having someone physically monitor the data movement. Factors that can influence the speed are your internet speed, quality and the allowed upload speed of the cloud hosted program. Certain cloud products allow a limited amount of data to be uploaded at a time. Understanding how much data you have and the allowable bandwidth from your environment to the cloud environment will give you a better picture of your costs.
One of the benefits of cloud products is that the data is stored offsite. Offsite data is a core component of a strong cyber security plan. However, if you are not using any additional backup programs and just relying on the cloud product that is replacing your server, email, ERP etc. you are exposing yourself to a single point of failure. There is a risk of losing your data if something where to happen to the network that is hosting your program. Many cloud products do not guarantee recovery of your data. There are 3rd party back up programs that add an additional layer, for a minimal cost. We strongly recommend these products to our clients. It may seem like overkill but we have seen companies not implement 3rd party backup and be out of business, for in some cases weeks.
Cloud computing is not a one size fits all solution. Before moving fully to a cloud environment you should perform an analysis on your network and current programs to see what can be adapted to the cloud and what can not. Most commonly programs that have not had regular updates will likely not be cloud ready. If they rely on older operating systems there may be some issues. Internet connectivity is key. Cloud products rely on the internet to work; you need a strong and fast connection to have them work efficiently.