Which Cloud Service is best for Your Business?

Cloud platforms have become very crucial for every business. I will have had to contend with many issues without a cloud platform for my personal use. But new business owners who are not yet familiar with the cloud technology may experience some difficulty in selecting the best solution for their startup in the crowded cloud market. Well, there is at least some good news; you will have so many options to make a choice. The following tips will help you make the best decision while considering the different services offered by cloud platforms.

What do you need from a cloud service? First, you should determine if a public or private, or hybrid cloud service will be best for your business. Some questions you should ask to determine the best services for your business include:

What type of data do you work with? The information you need to store will determine the cloud service you need. Private clouds are essential for storing sensitive information, but if your data is not highly confidential, you can consider the public cloud service.

Do you have preferred software for the cloud? The choice of software in the cloud will depend on your industry and business. Your options will include the public, private or hybrid cloud services.

How many people and devices will be connected to the service? Similar to a schoolyard game of “Telephone,” when more people are connected the less secure your data will be. Your choice should be an option that reflects the size of your business and offers scalable options as your business expands.

Have you made a budget for the cloud service? You can find options for free public cloud service, but this choice will depend on the data you wish to store. Private cloud services are quite expensive but they offer reliable security, and it is worth the investment.

Examine the options

After identifying your needs regarding the cloud service, analyze the options as well as pros and cons.

Public Clouds. With the standard offerings, you can enjoy the storage of computer resources such as applications that can be accessed via the internet. There are some free cloud service and the pay-per-use options. Public clouds function with a shared infrastructure which serves multiple clients. They are suitable for non-sensitive data storage, collaboration, or email. Some examples of public clouds are the SaaS (software as a service), IaaS (infrastructure as a service), and the PaaS (platform as a service).

Pros: the public clouds are flexible and scalable. The costs depend on the user’s needs, and this service can be used at any location. You can pool high-levels of resources with a public cloud; this means you stand to benefit from larger economies. One major advantage for users who are not familiar with this technology is that you will not be required to manage the service.

Cons: It is important for the industries such as the healthcare sector to be updated regarding the use of cloud services to manage public records and for security. Public clouds are more vulnerable to cyber-attack. The users may also be concerned about the reliability of the public cloud.

Private Clouds. The private cloud services have similar functions as the public cloud services, but they use proprietary architecture to distribute their services. This means that rather than serving multiple clients, a private cloud serves only your company. These private services are the best option for changing business models or businesses with unpredictable needs. Gartner sees the private cloud industry growing through 2017.  Because their systems are secure, uptime needs are met, and they are ideal for mission-critical workloads. Regulated industries such as the financial and medical sectors require the offered secure and exclusive cloud.

Private clouds are scalable. They also feature self-service options and offer multi-capacity functions. They are crucial for companies that handle big data. Most importantly, they are more secure because the private clouds provide hosted services secured behind a firewall. These services are usually made available to a limited number of people.

The two disadvantages of the private cloud services are its management and the costs. The businesses internal IT team will be responsible for managing the private cloud. This means an extra budget for staffing, maintenance, and capital. Virtualization, cloud software and management tools are added costs.

Hybrid Cloud. As the name suggests, the hybrid clouds offer the best of the public and private cloud services. It is a combination of business on-premises private cloud with public cloud services. Companies can shift workloads between the private and public cloud services in line with the changing demands of their businesses. For example, a company may use a 0n-premise private cloud to store sensitive data and a public cloud such as Google Compute Engine to store less sensitive materials.

I’m not alone in my expectations for an expanding hybrid cloud marketplace -- some projections have speculated it is growing to $91.74 billion by 2021.

Regarding the pros and cons, there are no significant negative aspects of this service. Businesses that deal with highly changeable workloads should consider the hybrid cloud services as the ideal for their needs. They offer the business solutions that are scalable and flexible.

The best cloud service within your budget

Startups need cloud service as much as CIOs  in established companies. Your goal should be to determine the options for your business which is attainable within your budget. With this information, you should make the best choice. Also, note that your patronage is what the market depends on, so don’t rely on only one source after deciding what is best for your business.

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