If you are trying to evaluate whether it is better to put all your efforts into creating a cloud infrastructure or focus your set up toward on-premise hosting you will soon discover there are good and bad points to both solutions.
Here is a look at some of the differences and aspects to consider so that you can, hopefully, make a more informed decision when deciding which way to go.
Operating within your own existing structure
It would be a smart idea to search out the strategic technology guidance you need as part of the evaluation process and one of the key questions surrounds the issue of deployment.
When you have an in-house setup, you apply all of your resources to maintaining an IT infrastructure that serves your business within its physical premises. In contrast to that, a cloud-based solution will create a scenario where your IT resources will be based at the premises of your chosen service provider.
Using a cloud-based solution will still ensure that you have access to all your resources around the clock in the same way as an in-house option, so one consideration is whether you are comfortable with the ongoing costs of maintaining and updating your own servers or would prefer to pay just for what you use without worrying about upgrade costs.
Another key issue to consider is security, as you will always want to preserve the integrity of your data, especially if you store highly sensitive information.
Privacy concerns are a hot topic when debating in-house against a cloud-based option.
Seek assurances and clarification regarding security and encryption measures with your chosen server host if you are looking to outsource.
Regulations and compliance
There are a large number of industries that operate under some form of regulatory controls and issues such as Data Protection affect most businesses.
Customer and employee records need to be maintained in a secure environment at all times and what you want to know is that your own systems pass due diligence tests, and the same applies to a cloud-based solution.
Another important point to consider is being able to maintain user access to your systems.
Cloud services will require an internet connection to be accessed whereas an on-site can be accessed without the need for internet access.
If you do have any regular issues with internet connectivity in your area or on your premises, this could create unwanted downtime where you can’t get on the cloud.
Your business needs will be constantly evolving and this is an area where a cloud-based solution might be more preferable.
The reason for this is that software and hardware updates are covered within the cost of your off-site solution and if you need to create more users or add more data space, this can all be done easily with the same upfront capital costs you would face if you maintained your own in-house system.
As you can see, there are definite pros and cons attached to either solution, so it would be a good idea to make a checklist of what you want and need from your system and see how either option scores on each point.