Gartner’s prediction that two thirds of all mid-sized firms will use Cloud services in 2013, compared with just half in 2012(1) is being amply demonstrated by the clients moving to business telecommunications provider Digital Island.
An impressive 65% of new Digital Island customers are implementing fast fibre internet connections to enable their business to take advantage of the benefits of Cloud computing.
This is in line with the global trend, as IDC has stated that ‘Cloud first’ strategy will double to 70% over the next four years among CIOs(2), although it could be argued that early adaptors are well represented within Digital Island’s customer base.
All businesses should build a clear plan for migration to Cloud into their business strategy as there is real business risk in being slow to adapt to this technology when competitors are taking full advantage of the opportunities offered by Cloud computing.
Cloud is more than just a different means of delivering IT applications; it also provides a new way of doing business.
As a starter, businesses can access enterprise grade applications from across the globe with low capital outlay and subscription based pricing removing barriers to adaption.
Cloud applications are easy and cost effective to deploy even across multisite organisations, usually designed to be self-customisable, and offer total scalability with the ability to quickly up or downscale users individually, in tens or even hundreds of users.
The rapid deployment model and built-in enterprise grade security, backup and disaster recovery aspects of Cloud applications remove risk and capital expense.
For businesses today an equally important aspect is that Cloud computing is enables businesses to rethink how they operate.
There is a growing trend to move away from traditional office-centric operating models, which is important as our cities get bigger with more traffic congestion, but also for the next generation workforce who are used to a far more dynamic approach to working.
In particular Cloud is the ultimate tool for remote and part time workers, and leverages the most from next-gen workers as Cloud applications enable them to operate in a familiar web centric manner to address business tasks.
Globally, Cloud apps are removing many of the geographic and cultural boundaries for delivering key business functions, and their ability to integrate natively with other Cloud platforms means ever-simplifying implementation of technology is a reality.
An advantage of a Cloud strategy is that businesses can take a step by step approach for migrating their systems from On Premise to Cloud, and in the process successfully run a mixed environment.
A common driver for Cloud migration is when an IT system requires replacement, perhaps due to becoming end of life, changing business requirements, or excessive running costs.
An example of the above is the growing trend to move from On Premise PBX systems to Cloud PBX. Digital Island Cloud PBX provides a feature rich, reliable, cost effective phone system solution, without the need for a server in the office.
The Cloud PBX is created and maintained via web portals, and hosted on redundant high availability platforms.
Staff connect to the Cloud PBX using IP desk phones, smart phones or soft phones from the office, home, or anywhere with an Internet connection.
Unlike other Cloud PBX solutions the Digital Island solution can also deliver Unified Communications functionality such as Presence, Outlook integration, smartphone integration and web/audio/video conferencing.
Most Cloud PBX applications, such as the Mitel product ranged by Digital Island, are based on per-user monthly pricing which includes the SIP channel, PBX extension, DDI, desktop phone, and all local and national calling.
Because it is in the cloud, businesses with multiple office locations and remote workers only require one Cloud phone system.
Typical of Cloud applications, a Cloud PBX installation incurs a small one-off fee but all hardware and software, maintenance, support and upgrades are included in the monthly subscription.
We’re excited to see New Zealand businesses moving with the Cloud rush and welcome enquiries on how moving to the Cloud can keep your business ahead of the pack.
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(1) Gartner – ‘Emerging Technology analysis: How Consumer Device Technologies Can Support Cloud Adoption’ – Mar 2012.(2) IDC – ‘Insights Predictors 2013: The CIO Agenda’ – Doc # 238464 – Dec 2012.