Cloud computing

With cloud computing, your business doesn’t have to invest in its own local servers, associated staff or other infrastructure. This means that all you need to create a functioning workplace is an internet connection. Cloud computing is a flexible, cost-efficient solution which can be customised to the individual needs and preferences of your company.

I want to know more about cloud computing

Develop your business with cloud computing

Cloud computing has been available on the market for some time, although its use has exploded over the last decade. According toGartner, the research and advisory company, this trend is set to continue over the years ahead, thanks to the myriad of advantages these solutions provide. The greatest benefit is that you can create flexible solutions which are tailored to your company’s specific needs and preferences.

Your business has the opportunity to create greater cost-efficiency, harness innovation, tighten IT security and automate parts of its operations. As a result of the multiple benefits, cloud computing solutions have become an essential investment for companies striving to develop and future-proof their operations.

What you'll learn about cloud computing

To provide a better understanding of cloud computing, this article will cover the following:

  1. What cloud computing is, and the types of solutions available
  2. The differences between the public, private and hybrid clouds
  3. How cloud computing works
  4. The advantages and disadvantages of using the cloud
  5. What kind of solution is best for your company?

 

What is cloud computing?

What sets cloud computing apart is that users can access their services from different types of devices – login details and an internet connection are all that’s required to get up and running.

Cloud computing solutions are usually divided into three levels: IaaS (Infrastructure as a service); PaaS (Platform as a service) and SaaS (Software as a service). Examples of IaaS include virtual machines, servers, storage and backup, while databases, web servers and development tools are examples of PaaS. SaaS includes services such as e-mail tools, Office 365, Google Education and various games.

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What’s the difference between the private, public and hybrid clouds?

The volumes of data created and consumed by companies has rocketed, making local management both costly and time consuming. With this in mind, cloud computing is an excellent alternative to running an IT environment from your own server centre. This can take place in the private, public or hybrid cloud, and we’ll be looking at the differences between them below.

What is the public cloud?
According to Microsoft Azure the public cloud is something that is owned and operated by a third-party provider. These services are easy to access via a browser, where they’re open and available for all companies to use. For this reason, the servers are shared with other operations, although the provider also looks after support and security issues. Examples of public cloud computing services include e-mail solutions such as Outlook and Gmail, file storage services like OneDrive or Google Drive and communication solutions such as Teams or Slack.

What is the private cloud?
The private cloud hosts computer resources that are only used by a single business or organisation. With the private cloud, services and infrastructure are always maintained on a private network, and both hardware and software are used exclusively by your business. This makes it easier to adapt resources in order to satisfy specific IT requirements.

What is the hybrid cloud?
In a hybrid solution, storage of information is spread across different geographical locations. This means some parts are based locally, some with a local partner and some in the public cloud. A hybrid solution ensures that, even if there’s an issue with your own backup, there’s always another backup solution to fall back on.

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How your business can migrate to the cloud

In order to start using cloud computing, your company must carry out migration. In simple terms, this means transferring your data and services to the cloud. Below we’ll take a step-by-step look at how Nordlo operates in order to carry out a successful migration:

1

Gain an understanding of your vision and objectives

We begin by obtaining a clear overview of your vision and objectives in terms of cost, innovation, security and requirement of automation. In the phase, risk analysis is undertaken in order to ensure you understand the risks and challenges associated with the new cloud computing strategy.

2

Carry out in-depth analysis, to identify the right solution

We then perform a technical analysis. This takes into account the company’s culture, security requirements, the system’s technical specifications, existing systems and finance. We do this in order to deliver a solution that suits your business and enables a smooth, efficient transition to the cloud.

3

Confirm insight through people-based analysis

We then continue with people-based analysis. This involves interviews and verbal dialogue to ensure that what we’ve identified in the technical analysis corresponds with the perception you have of your business. It’s not uncommon that many processes that companies wish to transfer to the cloud are not well documented – which is why verbal analysis is important.

4

Building a cloud overview and training staff

Based on the analysis carried out, we jointly select the cloud computing solution that best suits your business and preferences. We then construct a cloud computing overview that we’ve agreed upon, which often leads to a hybrid solution. In this stage we put a lot of emphasis on training, to ensure the business has the knowledge required to use the new solution.

The advantages of cloud computing

The main advantages are scalability and the opportunity to harness innovation. In addition, storage on a cloud disk ensures your files are protected, so even if something happens to your computer, the services are continually updated and you don’t have to worry about maintenance.

You also benefit from a fixed monthly or annual expense, which means you no longer have to carry the costs of maintenance and security, making it easier to budget. You’ll save time and money, and can focus wholeheartedly on your core activities instead.

The disadvantages of cloud services

The biggest disadvantage is if migration is not performed correctly from the outset. Ineffective migration could lead to the system being less secure than before, or result in a more expensive service that functions more slowly. After all, in simple terms, your data is being stored on someone else’s computer. As a result, it’s important to evaluate what type of company information can be saved in the cloud, as well as what can’t. It’s also important to have access to good experience when migrating, and ensure everything is done thoroughly from the outset.

Which cloud computing solution is best for your company?

Experience shows that a hybrid combination of private and public cloud computing often works best, and is thereby the solution that Nordlo normally recommends to its customers. This type of architecture enables companies to harness modern, innovative solutions in the public cloud while also basing parts of their IT platform locally. Simply put, a hybrid solution can be said to be like having your own cloud computing system alongside the best parts of the public cloud.

Nordlo can help your company connect to the cloud

Migration to the cloud may be different depending on your business, preferences and needs, as well as the type of services you intend to use. This process requires a lot of planning, experience and knowledge, but with the help of our experts we can analyse and implement a customised cloud computing solution that suits you and meets your needs.

Want to know more about cloud services, and how they can benefit your company?

We’d love to meet up, so we can tell you more about how we can help your business with different types of cloud computing solutions, and talk about the unique benefits you can enjoy.