Five strides to freedom: how packaged cloud is freeing SMBs from IT
By Catherine McFarland • 30 Oct 2014
My dear, here we must run as fast as we can, just to stay in place. And if you wish to go anywhere you must run twice as fast as that,
said the Red Queen to Alice in Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass.
It’s easy to see the analogy with our super competitive, always-on business world. To succeed today, you’ve got to be able to run at lightning speed. Agility, flexibility, productivity and low total cost of ownership (TCO) are top priorities for the fast-growing small and medium sized business (SMB).
A packaged cloud solution addresses these priorities by consolidating multiple cloud services under one provider, offering a single point of contact, provisioning, support and billing. This gives organisations the support and performance level they need without having to invest in hardware, software or human resources.
The big five benefits of packaged cloud
1. Keeping your business agile
A packaged cloud solution allow SMBs to react more quickly to changing business conditions. It helps build a strong foundation for growth. Businesses need no longer be hindered by on-premise hardware, infrastructure and software. Cloud technologies scale effortlessly in the background, and can be adopted, changed and upgraded as needs demand.
For example your phone systems can be reconfigured remotely as staff, offices or marketing campaigns change. Your e-commerce website will stay online during surges of traffic. Data is available instantly, anywhere, without capital investment. And a packaged cloud solution makes this happen with minimum use of your time.
2. Easy integration with other cloud services
A packaged cloud services provider will already have vetted and selected top-level cloud solutions. They'll be industry proven so will provide the necessary performance levels to integrate with existing on-premise applications. This means you can choose business-grade solutions without having to wade through lists of apps and start-up vendors. So if you're going through a merger or acquisition, for example, packaged cloud takes away a lot of the pain.
3. One bill and one support team 24/7
With packaged cloud, you get all your IT in one bill. This removes the headaches associated with budgeting, usage control, invoice management and making payments. You get a committed helpdesk, making sure you get consistently excellent support for every service. Gone is the pain of having to contact multiple vendors or put up with the hassle of being passed from one to the other.
4. Trust your data is secure
Your data is one of your most important assets, so your cloud services provider should be able to answer all your data security questions. Make sure you find out the answer to these key questions:
- What is their security architecture and policy?
- Are they ISO 27001 accredited?
- How comprehensive is their Service Level Agreement (SLA)?
- Do they understand your data retention, protection and compliance needs?
- Where does your data physically live? Can they guarantee it will remain private?
5. Free from IT - you focus on your business
Once you have a good cloud services provider, you're free to focus on your business productivity and competitiveness. Find out how packaged cloud freed Peter Howlett, CFO of small City firm Pactum from 90% of all IT responsibilities.
If you’d like to find out more about what a successful cloud services model can achieve, take a look at our Business Guide: Driving and Measuring Sales Success in a SaaS/Cloud Environment.
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