Mid-sized businesses have special requirements. Their needs and demands are quite different from that of small and large enterprises. These are more complex in nature than small enterprises but lack in fund and resources of large companies. Mid-sized businesses are ideal candidates for cloud solutions since it can help them in meeting their IT requirements at reduced costs. The benefits cloud computing can offer them are:
• Transferring capital expenses to operational costs
• Speeding up the process of releasing products and services
• Improving the quality of IT solutions
• Lowering the cost of software/application acquisition
But cloud computing has evolved a great deal since initial days of offering data storage and hosted software services and it is high time for mid-level organizations to consider expanding their cloud ability beyond initial adoption stage. Mid-sized business can reap greater benefits by introducing advanced level cloud integration to their organizations and they can start by choosing the right cloud solution to expend their implementation process.
Some studies have revealed that though cloud adoption rate has grown significantly among mid level enterprises the adoption is only partial and most use cloud for file transferring facilities (like Dropbox) or to host end-user applications. They are yet to welcome virtualization solutions completely.
Obstructions can be found in transferring productive suits to the hosted environment, integrating cloud based service with legacy and on-premise applications, introducing security solutions to protect data, and more.
Enterprise application integration
A logical relationship needs to be forged between the applications hosted in cloud (like cloud CRM) and the other business software hosted in in-house server. Often when data is transferred from a legacy software to a hosted application solution it loses its relevance. This is called ‘integration penalty’. To retain data relevancy the enterprises therefore would need a comprehensive integration plan.
Some service providers offer platforms that allow integration of different cloud based applications from different vendors.
Securing your cloud
One of the weakest points of cloud is its security issues. Since mid-level enterprises lack in infrastructural facilities building private cloud is not always an option for them. As a result, they need to implement improved security measures to develop a secured cloud computing environment that can scale over time. The steps involved in creating a secured cloud environment involve:
• Understanding the threats and how vulnerabilities can harm your business
• Protecting your business against such security threats
• Monitoring security threats in real time
• Using appropriate security controls that will minimize your exposure and optimize business outcomes
The security policies need to be timely, dynamic and automated to offer continuous protection. Some of the cloud security solutions offered now are:
• Email protection
• Server protection
• Vulnerability management
Like cloud, these security features are also hosted and do not increase your capital expenses.
Mid-sized business private cloud
Although private cloud is considered an option for large enterprises only but mid-level enterprises with virtualization infrastructure can also take advantages of highly secured private cloud setup. An increasing number of cloud computing consulting firms are now offering reduced cost private cloud computing solutions to mid-sized businesses. Service providers can help in selecting the right delivery model that will optimize your benefits.
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