It’s a question our IT team is always asked: “Should my business use an internal server or a cloud system?”
As with many IT services and solutions, it all depends on your business. How does your business operate? What applications are essential? What tools does your team need to work smarter and faster?
Team up with an IT expert
As a first step, connect a staff member who has an in-depth understanding of your business operations, with an expert consultant who can make data and applications available in the best and most efficient way. This ensures your team can keep working without disruptions, delays, or IT teething issues.
What programs are essential to your operations?
Are you heavily dependent on particular packages specific to business operations? For instance, you might use practice management software that can only be run on your internal server – or is only available in the cloud.
Sometimes, software that must be run on your server has to be hosted at your premises. Other times, software can be hosted in an external data center, providing many benefits like redundant power supplies, internet connections, air conditioning, technical staff available on site 24/7, high security, around the clock monitoring and hardware replacement.
If you aren’t restricted to hosting your applications or file sharing in-house, then you’re free to move everything to the cloud.
Is your office in a remote area?
If your business is in a remote location, or the office isn’t within close proximity to fast Internet, you might be limited to hosting your server internally rather than in the cloud.
And if your business is geographically dispersed, you might be better placed to use the cloud as it offers better speeds and more flexibility.
How big is your business?
If you operate a bigger business, you might want to provide several services within the office and on a local server – for example file storage, printing and security services specific to the location.
Do you work with large files?
Does your team work with large files – and lots of them? Then to easily share them, you probably need local storage. This is almost always the case for businesses in the design, video, multimedia and architecture space.
Have you considered a hybrid solution?
Let’s say you need to offer some local storage to your office team, but also make files and applications available anywhere at any time for off-site workers. Then you might like to consider a hybrid approach. This synchronises local storage with other locations, such as the cloud.
Making the decision
It’s true that cloud storage can be superior to a local server, especially if you need to access business information out of the office. Doing things in-house is often more expensive, less flexible, and more risky.
That being said, the decision boils down to your individual business needs.
Need help assessing an internal server or cloud system for your organisation? Just ask our expert IT team.