In terms of data security, availability and innovation cycles, the requirements for all components of a sophisticated IT infrastructure have increased considerably in recent years. For the in-house-IT group – especially for smaller media companies – this often means permanent stress and the guts to fill the void. This boldness is usually at the expense of efficiency and flexibility and hence of competitiveness. Does software-as-a-service (SaaS) and the outsourcing of central business applications to the cloud offer the ideal solution? Or are the problems just “clouded”?
Today, it goes without saying that business applications are often accessed in the cloud. That was not always the case. There were many reservations and concerns: Is the data really secure? Can anybody else see my confidential information? Does it even pay ? If I were to do this, what risks would I take?
With the heightened requirements, these concerns have almost turned around a hundred eighty degrees: Is the data in my local IT structure really secure? Do I have enough resources to be up to date at all times? Is the access to the work environment location-independent and allows fast enough for inquiries and customer-friendly?
In these areas the cloud solution can really excel:
Data security, performance, and availability
Maximum security and performance are two central advantages of a cloud solution. This is a core competence for a certified high-performance data center with the highest standards. In a certified cloud, you have your own dedicated server environment configured with all the necessary performance features and hardware resources.
Another core competence of the cloud is high availability! The downtimes are, at most, in the one tenth of one percent range, and the servers are “up” and are actively monitored 24/7. For an in-house infrastructure, this is by no means a matter of course and often impossible to achieve.
And finally, data security and back-ups are no longer “worry topics” with the cloud. Perhaps no longer a “topic” at all. It’s simply taken care of, end of story!
This puts you at the forefront of both performance and security and lays another foundation for future competitiveness! And all this at manageable costs that would perhaps never be possible with your own local infrastructure.
Independence, flexibility, scalability
A cloud solution provides the freedom to develop, test and quickly implement new business models without the “ifs” and “buts” of constraining technology architectures. In today’s business climate, this freedom is not a luxury, but rather a necessary prerequisite for survival and growth in the market. And independence is not only required in terms of functionality: new standards are also demanded for data delivery and availability. The cloud ensures that the chosen system package is available, whether in the head office, the branch offices, home offices or field service. This also means availability in a modern workplace.
Costs, runtimes, functional scope, hardware usage or connection to other systems: If requirements and trends change, they all should be adaptable to the current market situation without major effort. This is what the cloud can do, giving you the opportunity to quickly realize additional benefits and productivity without an IT project or new license costs, as well as the option to return unused resources and functions and save further costs.
You can reduce the size of your data center or server room or even make it completely redundant with the cloud. And forget about costs for hardware, operating system licenses, technical maintenance, personnel and training. The cloud includes hardware and system licenses as well as system administration in a form that is tailored to your use.
And software updates are automatically installed so you can immediately benefit from rapid innovation cycles in the cloud and keep up with the latest technology.
Problem Shifting ?
These are all good arguments for getting ready for the future with cloud-based, integrated system components. But “copy and paste to the cloud” does not work in most cases. It is therefore important to have a supporting change management process that communicates the structural changes and “gets employees on board”. Technical support alone is not enough; consulting and partnership are the keys to the successful design of a cloud project. It is considered finished and succesful when the publisher can further develop his business models without technical limitations. Then the cloud can be the “silver bullet”. (Please excuse the old-fashioned expression.)
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