Cloud applications have been around for quite a while now. More and more businesses are using some sort of cloud application for at least part of their business needs.
There are a number of objections business owners generally have to overcome when deploying a cloud application:
- What if our internet goes down?
- What if the hosted server goes down?
- What if the vendor goes out of business?
- How do I control my data?
- What about security?
These objections are certainly valid and worthy of examination:
- Internet connectivity is now generally as available as electricity is. I can’t remember the last time our internet connection was out other than when the electricity was out(which means you have other problems as well).
- Most cloud applications are hosted in data centers with redundant servers/internet feeds/power supplies. This is definitely something you would need to check on with any vendor. Ask them what type of data center they are using. In general the up time for these types of centers will far exceed anything a small to medium business can do on their own.
- This could be a real concern although when this happens, you usually have enough notice to extract your data prior to total system shutdown. Again it pays to check a potential cloud vendor out and make sure they are a solid company.
- Most cloud vendors will provide a method for you to export your data or return it to you. Check with the vendor prior to signing up and make sure this is the case.
- Most cloud vendors take security very seriously. After all their business model is dependent on a good reputation and security and availability are how they build this reputation. Most of them have much more invested in this than the typical small to medium business, making their online data more secure than a local version (unless you have no internet connection at all).
As you can see there will always be objections to change and using a different software model. However there are real strengths to using an online application as it provides you more flexibility in terms of where work is performed and when.
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