Employees working at or near capacity often show visible signs of stress.
Data storage systems can’t demonstrate the same traits of being overworked, but their inability to continue processing additional information can be just as big an impediment in your company’s efforts to be productive.
“You’re only capable of holding so much data in storage and when you go past that, you start having problems,” says Ken Vanden Haute, vice president of sales and marketing with Meritech Inc. “There is a reason why it’s not operating like you think it should. The system is being asked to do too much.”
Data centers have become popular in recent years as an alternative to storing all your valuable information onsite. It’s more than just files and documents that need protection. Equipment and systems that allow your company to perform are also housed in these locations.
“It’s not just a place to back up everything,” Vanden Haute says. “It includes systems that help you operate your business.”
Smart Business spoke with Vanden Haute about the value of outsourced data centers and how they help your company work more efficiently.
How do you assess your current data storage capacity?
You want to start looking at budgetary pieces. What are you spending for what you’re getting? How secure is the data and equipment that you need to protect? What capacity do you have to add more to it? What would it cost to expand your current system?
It’s not uncommon when a business starts to find a simple solution for data storage because other aspects of building your business seem more pressing. But then you start growing and you get hit with increases as those needs multiply. Before you know it, you have a 40- or 50-person organization that is spending $4,000 or $5,000 for a service when you could be spending less than half that to store it with a professional provider.
Also, if you’re spending more time adding hardware to your custom-built, in-house data center than you are servicing your clients, that’s also a clue that it’s time to look at a better way of managing your infrastructure.
What are the advantages of using an outsourced data center?
You’re building virtual servers that can handle different pieces of your company’s operations.
The advantage of being on the cloud is that it’s unlimited. You can get as much space as you need. It used to be that if you took up so many gigabytes of memory, it cost you so much. But now it’s all based on the number of users and pricing breaks out based on that. The more users you have, the better breaks you get.
Another advantage is that you can include virtually all the protections you need in one contract. When you do it in house, you have licensing concerns and costs for anti-viral software and user profiles. Everything has a little cost that is attached to it. It’s not that way with a third-party cloud data center.
And most data centers are good about constantly upgrading and updating their equipment to ensure that they are providing top-level protection of your information.
What’s the key to making a seamless transition from in house to outsourced partner?
The day-to-day work of your employees shouldn’t change much.
If anything, employees will see a significant boost in performance. Look at the times when you run out of storage space and have to replace outdated equipment.
When you move to a company that takes the headaches out of this process, they will appreciate the time they get back to focus on more important tasks. Before you move forward with any plan, be sure to outline your expectations so that your provider can help you find a solution that is right for you. ●
Insights Technology is brought to you by Meritech Inc.