In Part One of this series, we looked at Public Cloud and its potential weaknesses, especially when it comes to the unpredictable monthly spend, which can contrast sharply with the expected lower cost following migration.
It isn’t just a story about cost though. For many organisations the promise of scalability and agility is tarnished by a few problems that are only truly now coming to light, like the loss of control when moving from an existing .
The message from the Public Cloud service providers, is that they do all the heavy lifting. You can now get on with doing what you do, while they accept responsibility for most, if not all aspects of systems and structure. However, handing everything off to them also means you’re losing control.
It is your Cloud provider that configures your platform. It is likely the configuration will suit the way they do business and the other users of the same Cloud, which may be an approach unsuited to your operational activities and not give you the security you need.
For many organisations however, there is a growing realisation that the unplanned, unpredictable costs associated with Public Cloud use, is not the smooth simple payment plan they expected or indeed, signed up for. But what are the alternatives?
Public Cloud is not your only option
The first decision for many organisations, particularly those in the legal sector, which in the past favoured on-premises solutions, is what delivers the improvements they seek; Public Cloud, Private Cloud or a hybrid mix of the two, perhaps whilst retaining some legacy on-premises technology?
Deciding between on-premises and Cloud environment is tough, with a number of important consideration. It starts with the needs of the organisation being thoroughly analysed, which will help send it down the right path.
The benefits of on-premise solutions are obvious, with implementation and delivery of applications handled internally, along with data storage, maintenance, safety, updates and patches all taken care of in-house.
Unless the organisation has partnered with an MSP to look after these internal systems and infrastructure, no third-party is involved. Apart from wages for the in-house team, electricity for the hardware and the licencing costs, little or no additional expense is required; budgeting is easy.
Private Cloud is a practical alternative to Public
Apart from Public Cloud, the most obvious alternative to on-premises is a Private cloud solution. This might be a system owned and managed by the organisation, but hosted elsewhere, or a service offered by a managed infrastructure provider.
In either case, the required hardware is used only by the organisation in question, removing the problems associated with shared capacity, spiky neighbours and the increased security risk from users sharing the environment.
Private Cloud delivers the seamless Cloud experience all users crave, without the security, capacity and resourcing problems. It is more expensive to set up Private than Public when buying rather than renting all the necessary hardware and systems, but you get the control back.
By tailoring the set-up to the unique needs of your organisation, your system does exactly what you want it to, at a cost you understand and control. If you need to make changes, you do them when you want and scale efficiently as you grow, which typically saves money over Public Cloud.
Hybrid Cloud can be the best of both worlds
An approach growing in popularity and shielding organisations from the often surprisingly high unexpected monthly bills with Public Cloud, is to use Private cloud for the expected workflows and dip into Public Cloud for any unexpected, overflow requirements.
By adopting this Hybrid Cloud approach, the organisation gets to choose the best platform for their activities and workflow. It is now common for an organisation to utilise Office 365 in the Public Cloud for Word documents, Email management etc., whilst maintaining an on-premises or Private Cloud case management solution.
When configured correctly, this workflow focussed approach is efficient and cost-effective, giving the organisation the security and reliability of the Private cloud, with the Public Cloud agility and scalability, allowing organisations the ability to add new people almost instantly.
The clamour for Cloud is unabated, but maybe the pandemic has given some organisations a little more thinking and assessment time, after the need for immediate remote working capabilities were resolved. If they went all-in Public Cloud, some of their bills will have been surprising by now and they are likely to be considering alternatives.
If an organisation wants the added agility and scalability offered by Cloud, but isn’t yet sure which way to jump, we would counsel caution and advise a longer period of consideration, with a chat through your needs with the Cloud experts here at Quiss.
We will ensure the system is designed with your workflows in mind, rather than trying to adapt the way you work to suit the Cloud environment selected. Choosing a Hybrid solution can deliver streamlined costs, improved performance and optimal security that you control.
So when you’re ready to have a Cloud conversation, we’re listening. Please get in touch and see how Quiss can help.