From a start-up to a multinational – make the right business decision by moving to the cloud
Until some years ago it happened that the majority of companies had to create their own IT-based up on their own small on-site data center, and not because it was the best solution, but because it was the only available one. It was due to several reasons, from the low level of the broadband connection to the traditionalism of the technical practice, from the lack of technical standards in the market to the lack of specific technology. Among the several solutions, today the cloud represents an alternative to this ‘on-premise’ model that is reliable, affordable and possible on the different purpose.
That’s why organizations have started moving data centers and software to the cloud: cloud could be seen as the ‘IT-as-a-commodity’, a new way to accelerate and facilitate a business.
As a result, many companies continued to deploy cloud solutions in silos, while maintaining their traditional core systems, but little by little the digital transformation has shifted the argument. There has been a step ahead in the mentality of the companies and now we can see that is the ‘best solution’ and not the ‘cheapest one’ to drive the final choice, overpassing any uncertainty or doubt.
The cloud is not only an enabler for making businesses more digital, it’s also an essential business driver for growth.
Moving away from the data center
Simple, self-service, pay-per-use, scalable – there are many reasons to move to the cloud, and yet 65 percent of enterprise workloads are still running in owned or onsite data centers. Colocation data centers only host 20 percent of systems and just 9 percent are cloud-based.
For a business with an innovative tech-focused model, choosing the right cloud is an important step. By making this choice, you’ll ensure that technology is not a barrier that slows your business down, but rather a springboard for your go-to-market strategy. However, too often, businesses find a reason to convince themselves that moving to the cloud is not the best decision for them. On one hand, you have large organizations talking about the supposed complexity, and on the other you have small businesses saying they are too small for the benefits to have a real impact.
This couldn’t be farther truth. From scalability to disaster recovery and digital transformation, the benefits of moving to the cloud are available to organizations of all shapes and sizes.
Moreover, let’s bear in mind that cloud is one of the possible ideal solutions, but there is enough room for colocation, dedicated servers or managed dedicated servers and infrastructures too. Each provider has to find the right solution and it could also mean to integrate those services and approaches, by taking the best part of each of them, and at the same time, being able to hide their complexity so that the end user should only focus on his own business, and do not take care of the IT.
Making scalability easier
Moving to the cloud gives businesses the ability to adapt to business growth. With the cloud, scalability can be achieved in two ways: horizontally, by manipulating the infrastructure to add or remove cloud servers and vertically, by increasing or reducing the individual components (vCPU, RAM, HD etc.) of a server.
Businesses of all sizes can achieve scalability needs, such as start-up CercaOfficina.it – a website through which you can choose a repair shop to fix your car. After only four years in business, CercaOfficina.it crossed the threshold of 100,000 requests. For this start-up, scaling up needed to scale fast and it also was the only way to stay in business. Another example is Tommigame.com, a startup aimed at supporting hospitalized children: it is a business realized by a digital health company using virtual reality and artificial intelligence in order to create immersive VR experience for those little patients. By using cloud solutions, it is possible to collect data about their psychomotor behavior, monitor and personalize their treatments. Also, in this case, the business grew so fast that it was necessary to scale up and provide tools and resources very quickly.
Cloud-based solutions enable businesses to find the perfect solution for every stage of growth. You can expand your IT infrastructure by increasing or decreasing the resources you need, depending on how the business is developing. You can start off with a relatively small infrastructure, then gradually scale up, eliminating latency that results from dormant physical IT infrastructure.
More effective disaster recovery
Over two-fifths (43%) of SMEs have no contingency measures in place to deal with an IT crisis. For businesses that don’t have a specialized IT department, disaster recovery (DR) generally means relying on a third-party provider. This is the case for most businesses, either because they think they’re too small to need DR, or because they are not able to justify the cost and resources needed to maintain traditional DR. For businesses that do have DR in place, a recent survey found that one in five (18%) lack confidence in their DR plans and almost half (46%) are not testing those plans on an annual basis.
Cloud-based DR offers solutions adapted for all types of firms. Whatever your size, cloud-based DR offers a way to build up your resilience at a price that’s relative to the size of your business, and with smaller resource overheads when creating, implementing and testing your DR plan.
Accelerating digital transformation
As part of an overall five year and 3.5 million Euro investment plan, Nexive, Italy’s number one provider of private postal services, decided to digitize all of its operations, moving from on-site to cloud-based data centers.
By moving to a cloud-based model, Nexive was able to ensure reliable physical and digital services. This also put Nexive one step ahead of its competition, with a flexible and secure solution for its data.
Before moving to the cloud, Nexive’s data was stored on a private server. This approach was a costly one, requiring significant investment in human resources to manage processes, constant manual upgrades, and high maintenance costs. The regulatory requirements and activities involved in ensuring compliance were also significant.
Moving to the cloud eliminated the maintenance and compliance costs from Nexive and offered a solution that could instantly scale up in case of an activity peak.
Moving to the cloud, and staying one step ahead
From start-ups to multinationals, moving to the cloud is the best insurance against downtime – whether that be due to natural disasters, or human errors. It’s also the best way to respond to activity peaks and free business leaders concentrate on running their companies, rather than these potential concerns.
What’s more, having the right cloud solution provides protection for IT resources, the data the business holds and for the business processes it supports.
As the cloud becomes an everyday part of how we live and work, it will become increasingly difficult to not have it as an essential part of your business process. Businesses that fail to take this leap risk missing out on the many opportunities that cloud presents. And ultimately, they risk losing their customers, many of who now expect cloud-transformed experiences as the norm, to competitors that provide these experiences.
Learn more about how to create the best cloud strategy for your organization.
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