The explosion of cloud computing has transformed the business landscape. Small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) now have equal access to the services used by business heavyweights, enabling them to benefit from the same agility. However, cloud adoption can be far from simple...
COMPAREX UK Blog Editor
Juggling the many moving parts of cloud can be especially difficult for SMEs with small IT teams. For example, simply determining the most cost-effective solution amongst the countless vendors, services, and payment models available is a challenge. Cloud computing offers many benefits to SMEs, but the difficulties involved in choosing, managing, and optimising, cloud services can be a barrier to adoption.
Cloud offers potential cost savings to SMEs, but businesses need to ensure value for money when choosing cloud services. The two most popular ways to adopt cloud are paying for subscriptions ‘upfront’ or a pay-per-use option, but neither model is without risk.
Subscription services could incur unnecessary expenditure when service consumption goes unmonitored, as organisations pay for services they no longer use. On the other hand, the danger with pay-per-use is that budgets can be consumed very quickly if consumption outstrips forecasts.
It’s important to align cloud purchasing decisions with key business objectives – whether that includes reducing costs, increasing flexibility, or a mixture of both. If decisions are not made with these objectives in mind, SMEs may end up with similar services across several cloud providers. IT managers can avoid this by carrying out shadow IT assessments and identifying cloud services in use that have been purchased outside of the IT departments control.
Ultimately, full visibility of all services currently in use by employees is paramount when trying to manage cloud costs and security vulnerabilities.
After adopting new cloud services, thereafter tracking usage is imperative to ensure costs are not spiralling out of control. Overseeing usage of numerous applications from several vendors is easiest through a centralised dashboard that integrates data from across the entire organisation. Modern dashboard solutions can show current cloud usage and estimate costs while delivering real-time limit notifications – helping SMEs keep up-to-date records of their cloud environment and spend.
Ultimately, to fully benefit from cloud computing, SMEs must make informed adoption and post-implementation management decisions. If companies fail to manage their cloud infrastructure, costs can quickly become problematic, nullifying any savings the company initially sought to gain.
To effectively handle cloud, an overarching management layer is imperative – providing IT teams in SME with real-time visibility of cloud costs and consumption alike.
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