Bob Milliken
Bob Milliken

I find myself in Seattle this week and am reminded of the time I have spent working on Microsoft projects. Like then, the need to communicate “how-to’s” is just as important, perhaps even more so, with today’s never standing-still technology.

For example, despite the Cloud being a powerful and cost-effective solution that many small- and medium-sized businesses welcome with open arms, there are hidden costs that some business owners might not be aware of. It might cost you little at first, but it has the potential to snowball and cost more than your weight in gold. Follow these five tips to keep the Cloud from breaking the bank:

No standalones
Cloud services come in various shapes and sizes, many of which are standalones that can contribute to rising costs. Opt for a service provider that offers a suite of products that all work together. They are often less expensive than a group of standalone products. Another benefit of working with a provider is that you receive a single point of contact to resolve your issues quickly and effectively.

Experience matters
If you have to integrate a standalone Cloud service into your system, make sure you hire an experienced integration consultant for the job since they will be able to finish the job quicker, thus making it cheaper. Integration mishaps can cause serious downtime which drains a lot of money.

computerBackups are important
Performing endless backups will definitely waste cloud storage space. That’s why it’s important to examine your Cloud storage data by asking the following questions:

  • How many versions of this data do you need to store for the long-term? The more versions you store, the more it costs.
  • What regulatory demands do you need to meet? Some data may need to be accessible for up to three years, whereas other data can be deleted after 30 days.
  • How quickly do you need to access your backup? If you can wait for a day or two, archive that data to a less expensive service or offline at your provider’s data center.

Remove users
Many Cloud service providers charge by the number of users in your system. By neglecting to manage the list of users, you could end up paying for people who no longer work for you. Implement processes that remove users when they are terminated and consider scheduling a regular audit. Ideally, this should be once every six months to a year, to ensure that your Cloud user list is up-to-date.

Your Take Away

Utilizing the right technology resources is vital to your business’s success, and so is knowing how to prevent them from racking up a staggering monthly bill. If you wish to enjoy all the benefits Cloud computing can provide your business without breaking the bank, give us a call and we’ll be happy to help.

Bob Milliken is the TheITguy@CascadiaSystemsGroup.com specializing in helping businesses with their IT needs. Discover how great local IT services can be. 604.270.1730.