Keep the Cloud Affordable with These Tips
Small and medium sized businesses and firms globally are adopting cloud technologies. However, there are hidden costs that some business owners might not be aware of. They might not seem like much at first, but those costs could eventually snowball. Follow these five tips to keep the cloud from breaking the bank:
Cloud services come in various shapes and sizes, many of which are standalone platforms with rates that increase over time. Opt for a service provider that offers a suite of products that all work together. They are often less expensive than a group of standalone products. Another benefit of working with a cloud provider is that you receive a single point of contact to resolve your issues quickly and effectively.
If you plan on integrating a standalone cloud service into your system, make sure you hire an experienced integration consultant to facilitate a smooth transition. Integration mishaps can cause serious downtime and cost a lot of money.
Backups are important
Unnecessary or inefficient backups will waste cloud storage space. Examine your cloud storage data by asking the following questions:
- How many versions of this data do I need to store long-term? The more versions you store, the more it costs. This is known as Recovery Point Objective or RPO which is determined by looking at the time between data backups and the amount of data that could be lost in between backups.
- What regulatory demands do I need to meet? Some data may need to be accessible for up to three years, whereas other data can be deleted after 30 days.
- How quickly do I need to access my backups? If it can wait for a day or two, archive that data to a less expensive service or offline at the provider’s data center. This is known as RTO, or Recovery Time Objective, which is the target time you set for the recovery of your IT and business activities after a disaster has struck.
Many cloud service providers charge by the number of users in your system. By neglecting to manage the list of users, you could end up paying for people who no longer work for you. Implement processes that remove users when they are terminated and consider scheduling a regular audit. Ideally, this should be once every six months to a year, to ensure your cloud user list is up-to-date.
Ask your cloud provider whether they can proactively monitor your account and notify you of potential issues before they cause problems. This is especially important if you have a pay-as-you-go license that charges based on resource or storage consumption.
Utilizing the right technology resources is vital to your business’s success, and so is knowing how to prevent them from racking up an overwhelming monthly bill. If you wish to enjoy all the benefits of cloud computing without breaking the bank, give us a call at (800) 421-7151 and we’ll be happy to help.