Cloud Computing For Small Companies

Created by Joe Nemastil on 2010-02-18

Have you heard anything like the following?

"The server needs to be upgraded, we can't easily control document versions for pricing and proposal templates, we think some of our employees are using pirated software, and some of our PC users have slow machines or machines that lock up and need to be restarted. Our IT support person helps us on an hourly basis, but we're not confident they have a strategic perspective, and they seem intent on selling us more hardware and software."

This unfortunate scenario occurred recently at a small company in the Twin Cities. Sadly, it's all-too-common in many small businesses.

Because of IT problems, among their 18 employees, this company's low-ball guess was that they were losing 10-20 hours of productivity each week. They were studying two options to fix the problems, each of which required capital outlay of thousands of dollars to add hardware and software. Rightly so, they were also concerned that more IT infrastructure would lead to higher administration costs going forward.

The NT Group showed them another option, using a cloud computing architecture. The cloud-based model allowed them to:

- upgrade their server and data storage network

- upgrade their MS Office applications

- implement global calendaring and other efficiency tools

- access applications and documents securely from any computer and the Internet

- implement a disaster recovery and business continuity plan

- get access to 24×7x365 local support

- implement the solution with no capital expenditure

The cloud desktop solution toook less than 30 days to implement. The client stopped losing the 20-30 hours of productivity each week, but they also realized a benefit they hadn't anticipated.  Because their employees now had 24-hour secure access to their applications and data, they began working after hours from home and other remote locations on a regular basis, and overall productivity soared.

In the final analysis, the client grew sales revenue in a tough economy, improved overall productivity, and improved overall morale by giving their people useful tools and a flexible schedule. The owners can now focus on other issues, knowing that their data is backed up and secure, and that their IT expenses are predictable and fixed.

Who do you know that could benefit from understanding if/how cloud computing solutions could work for them?

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