Cloud Services Applications

Cimmons deploys a software in a cloud environment rather than being hosted on a local server or machine. Companies that own and operate public cloud infrastructure deliver on-demand computing services to a variety of customers across industry verticals.

As the costs of building and maintaining an IT infrastructure continue to rise, more businesses are moving their applications to a cloud-based infrastructure, and transformative technology advances as well as intuitive user interface designs are fueling the adoption of cloud services. And it’s no surprise, given that cloud-based services offer flexibility, reliability, and availability previously unavailable to IT departments.

With such a rise in the ubiquity of cloud adoption, it’s fair to say we’re living in a golden age of cloud services.

Traditional Process

  • Option #1: Buy a solutionTraditionally, before the era of cloud computing, an enterprise or small business would host all their own solutions on-premise and in-house within a data center. An organization would buy a solution and then once purchased, would be responsible for its maintenance. In-house servers allow an enterprise to have physical control over their backup processes, and critical data also stays in-house, rather than with a third-party provider. There also isn’t the need to rely on an internet connection for access to data, and it can be cost-effective for a smaller or medium-size business.
  • Option #2: Use a third-partyConversely, many companies choose to use third-party hosting and colocation services to move away from a traditional in-house IT infrastructure. Third-party providers offer a level of uptime that’s more or less guaranteed in the contract. Disaster recovery is also a key feature that third-party providers offer, in addition to the cost savings that can be achieved when an off-site provider hosts and maintains the hardware.

Limitations of these options

Whether an enterprise decides to choose to buy a solution and maintain it themselves, or they hire a third-party provider, both have their merits, but they also have their drawbacks. In-house solutions require a capital investment in hardware and infrastructure, and need adequate space within an office for a server rack, not to mention the dedicated IT support that an enterprise must provide themselves. There also isn’t any uptime or recovery time guarantees, and depending on its location, could be more susceptible to data loss during a disaster.

Vertical scaling also can prove challenging within an enterprise. Vertical scaling allows an enterprise to grow by adding more power to an existing machine. Since virtual scaling works on a single machine, there isn’t a redundant server, and an application’s health is also therefore bound to a single location. Decoupling an application’s tiers can help with this since they are likely to have different resource needs. When separating the tiers, each tier can then be composed to ensure the right instance type is used based on what resources are needed.

But when choosing a third-party for a hosted solution, a lack of control is something that many enterprises can’t seem to get past No matter what a service provider says upfront, using a third party means giving up some level of data control, which could pose significant risk if that data gets lost, deleted, corrupted, or stolen. It’s a decision each enterprise must make individually on whether it can tolerate that kind of risk.

Cloud-Based Services Process

Cloud-based services are applications or software that are available remotely and hosted on the vendor’s server on behalf of the customer. One easy way to look at this is to still think of the software as being on-premise, but it just happens to also be available remotely.

Common Reservations Around Using Cloud-Based Services

The most common challenge and issue that enterprises have after making the decision to go with cloud-based services revolves around how they are supposed to integrate this new technology with their bread-and-butter legacy IT systems? Many of the issues stem from the process, which involves both technical and non-technical resources. Often, enterprises assume a cloud migration will be seamlessly handled by the vendor, but a lack of communication with the vendor and across departments and lines of business can create problems, including a lack of proper expectations. Moving legacy systems to the cloud is difficult, and costs can run high. Understanding the new technology also takes time, as does the data integration and management, which often leads to an exercise in patience.

Another issue with cloud-based services centers around data security. Storing important, sensitive information on a cloud computing provider’s external cloud isn’t always the best solution for highly regulated organizations. That’s why it’s crucial that a cloud vendor defines exactly what its policies are when it comes to backup processes and disaster recovery. Enterprises need as much of a guarantee as they can get that their data will be secure in the cloud.

While the amount of cost savings that a business gets when moving applications to the cloud is often bandied about, there are also hidden costs and fees that an enterprise might not realize when conducting a cloud migration. In-house IT staff members need ongoing training to get up to speed with the cloud architecture, which can sap productivity in a hurry. Storage also can be a common pitfall during a cloud migration, and an enterprise that chooses a tiered-storage plan might soon find itself having to unexpectedly pay extra to access its data.

The bottom line when conducting a cloud computing installation is for an enterprise to be upfront with its vendor about expectations and what it hopes to gain. Expectations must be clear on both sides, so that any additional costs or delays that arise during the installation are not a surprise.

A Closing Forecast

As far as cloud-based services have come in such a short timeframe, the possibilities for where they are headed are seemingly endless. Vendors will continue to improve the security of their cloud applications, to ensure companies in every industry feel comfortable with their data in the cloud. Team collaboration applications such as Slack should see their popularity grow rapidly as more and more businesses turn to them to increase productivity and streamline communication.

Additionally, the way companies conduct business has changed drastically in the past 12 months. Organizations turn to the cloud for modern solutions to manage their business processes, whether they require a CRM application such as Knowledge Bank and Quality Management System. With the rise of such expansive services and shrinking commitments to internal resources, organizations will continue to lean on cloud-based services to adapt, evolve, and grow their businesses.

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