The Dark-Side of Cloud Computing

Moving all or part of your business to the cloud is becoming more common all the time. Most understand the basic benefits for doing so, but here’s a short list of five possible disadvantages to making the move or at least, not without answering some basic questions first.

Disadvantage #1: Downtime-If a small business’s internet connection goes down, what happens to the business? Usually the answer is not positive. If the Internet connection is down, the business is down as well.  So, what can a small business can do about it?

There are a couple of ways small business owners can solve this problem. First, consider backing up your Internet connections with two ISPs, the main monthly provider and a second one that offers and on-demand plan. A second option is to configure an automatic fail-over solution based on a 4G broadband provider such as Verizon and AT&T. For example if you have a retail business that has data in the cloud and relies on an Internet connection for transactions, a 4G backup solution can keep a business up and running while the main Internet connection is coming back online.

Solution: eMazzanti Technologies has a very affordable package called The eCare Network Management Solution that includes a feature-rich business router, firewall and switch in a small package that delivers a 4G wireless broadband connection to run an accounting system, POS system and handle card transactions seamlessly. The solution is built for secure applications that require advanced networking features like WiPipe Security, VPN Termination, and Failover/Failback.

Disadvantage #2: Recovery time-If a small business has all of its data backed up in the cloud, recovery time is a function of the size and speed of the Internet pipe connection. If a business has 10 terabytes of data to restore with a 5 Mbps Internet connection, it might be days or weeks before the business has fully restored all its data.

Solution: Terrestrial Backup for Cloud Servers-Any business, especially cloud-based or enabled businesses need to physically backup all of its data. The backup data can quickly be physically accessed and the recovery process implemented.

eMazzanti Technologies has robust business continuity/disaster recovery solutions:

eCare Advanced Backup Client (ABC)-For smaller sized businesses that only need file folder level backup rather than system or network-wide backup – think of it as a basic “ABC” solution to data protection. This size business finds it more convenient back up individual document files rather than operating systems or applications that exist as on-site as OEM – provided DVDs.

eCare Advanced Backup System (ABS)-For larger businesses or firms where fast recovery from a data disaster is vital to the bottom-line. This Advanced Backup System solution ensures the entire system or network is backed up – files, computers, servers and all default or custom network settings. Think of it as a complete “snapshot” of a network that can be restored, in some cases, in 30 minutes or less.

Disadvantage #3: Security issues. How safe is a small business’s data? Cloud computing means Internet computing so companies should not be using cloud computing applications that involve using or storing data that they not comfortable having on the Internet. That said, well established and reliable cloud computing vendors have the latest, most sophisticated data security systems possible and realize data security is a big concern.

Migrating to the cloud can actually improve security for a small business because large cloud providers often offer levels of security that many businesses simply can’t afford on their own.

Solution: eMazzanti Technologies offers enterprise-level offsite backup that complies with the five nines industry standard for uptime and security. The IT consultant also offers the latest Microsoft Office 365 cloud solution at: http://www.cloudtechnology365.com/o365.

The website offers complete information on the how businesses can benefit from the new cloud-based offering along with a free 30 Day-trial to Office 365 (E3) enterprise addition which includes the following benefits:

•    Active Directory synchronization

•    Configurable anti-spam filtering

•    SharePoint intranet supporting up to 300 sub-sites

•    Live 24 x 7 IT customer phone support

•    Office Professional Plus 2010 desktop version subscription (for up to 5 devices per user)

•    Unlimited email storage and archiving

“Any business that wants to significantly lower its hardware and software costs while getting ‘enterprise level’ communication, collaboration and security capabilities has got to seriously consider Office 365,” said Mazzanti.

Disadvantage #4: Potential Lack of Support-Businesses that move to the cloud usually need help in the transition along some on-going level of IT expertise. Adding or deleing staff, team site and customer site development, customer access and other integration issues will usually require help from a cloud IT specialist.

Solution: eMazzanti Technologies has several IT consulting budget packages that include on-demand or all-you-can-eat fixed monthly fee. This approach allows customers to better manage IT costs so there are no surprises.

In addition, eMazzanti has the credentials of a proven IT expert. For example, it has earned Microsoft’s coveted Cloud Accelerate designation, is a Microsoft 2012 Partner of the Year, a Microsoft Gold Partner, is a three-year winner of INC Magazine’s top 5000 best businesses, and is on CRN’s 2012 Fastest Growth list.

Another example of the kind of unique support eMazzanti provides the customer is through the Productivity Monitoring System. This proprietary technology solution precisely tracks productivity in terms of customer service and employee engagement. The unique technology continuously monitors 16 key indicators 24×7 associated with the two critical areas of service support and employee performance. The data for these two areas are generated from the company’s job ticketing system.

For example, under the customer service area, eMazzanti has real-time monitoring of: customer satisfaction rating trends, open tickets by status, open tickets by tech, open tickets by service type, net change Open/Close ration, tickets resolved by tech, and ticket trends.

Under the employee performance area, eMazzanti tracks hours worked by tech, billable utilization, revenue per month, margins by tech, revenue by tech/month, idle opportunities by tech, sales funnel and vacation time taken.

For each area monitored, eMazzanti has the results continuously displayed as multiple charts and graphs on three 60” monitors strategically located around the office. In fact, one monitor is placed near the main door so employees can see exactly how the firm is doing with its customers first thing in the morning when they arrive for work and the last thing they as they leave. All employees are also reminded of their personal and team contribution on a daily basis.

In addition, one or more techs are on call all night long to make sure customer networks are up and running, resolving issues before the customer is even aware.

Disadvantage #5: Inflexibility. Be careful when selecting a cloud computing vendor that a business isn’t locked into using the providers’ proprietary applications or formats. For instance, a user can’t insert a document created in another application into a Google Docs spreadsheet. Also make sure management can add and subtract cloud computing users as the business grows or contracts.

Solution: eMazzanti Technologies offers solutions based on best-of-breed Microsoft technology;  technology that  is recognized all over the world and software that maintains a familiar look and feel to minimize the learning curve.

 

About eMazzanti Technologies

With a company name that sounds more like a purebred, high-performance sports car than a IT support and consulting firm, eMazzanti Technologies is all about delivering powerful solutions such as Office cloud technology 365, computer network management, network troubleshooting, business continuity and disaster recovery, green computing, mobile workforce technology, information security and business information optimization in the most efficient manner possible. The Hoboken, N.J., firm is located in one of the most densely populated – and competitive – regions in the U.S. It provides business technology consulting services for companies ranging from home offices to multinational corporations throughout the New York metropolitan area and in three countries. For more information contact: Carl Mazzanti 201-360-4400 or emazzanti.net. Twitter: @emazzanti , Facebook: Facebook.com/emazzantitechnologies. eMazzanti Technologies is a Microsoft 2012 Partner of the Year.