Why It’s Time To Expect More From Your Managed IT Services Provider
With the demands of remote work increasing, it’s fair to say that cloud computing is the darling of the global business world these days. So much so, that Fortune Business Insights predicts the cloud market will grow approximately 18 percent, year over year, until the market hits an estimated $791.4 billion in 2028. There’s no denying it—the future of cloud computing looks bright. So bright, Cloud MSPs could completely change the way small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) work with their managed IT service providers.
Is that disruptive? Yes. But, like most disruptive trends, it’s also a great opportunity. As a company that’s made its name serving the IT needs of SMBs, we here at Integris are pretty excited about the opportunities that cloud computing brings. Why? Because it offloads workaday issues like software updates and system admin to the cloud provider, and opens up whole new opportunities to be a strategic Cloud MSP advisor. If you’re considering jumping into the future of cloud computing, have you considered asking your MSP these questions?
The Future of Cloud Computing: Five Strategic Questions Your MSP Can Answer for Your Business
Cloud computing is a revolution for SMBs, because it finally brings enterprise-level software, storage and security to your business at scale. New capabilities and opportunities are now there for the taking. But have you given any thought to how your network and software platforms can use cloud computing future trends to steer the future of your business?
You need an MSP that can do more than just order your computers and fix your day-to-day maintenance concerns. You need an MSP that can be a true strategic partner in your success. If you’re currently working with an MSP, or considering contracting with one, we recommend you ask these five strategic questions.
#1—How Can my Software Save my Company Money?
It may seem counter intuitive to spend money to save money, but with the right cloud software, this can very much be the case. Are there platforms you can be using that will eliminate whole work processes for your staff? Can off- the-shelf cloud software do the job better than the custom programs you’re maintaining? Will cloud storage eliminate the need for your server room? Do document and file sharing systems enable remote work so efficiently, you could close down branches or even your headquarters? Should you invest in VOIP systems, and eliminate the expense and maintenance of a wired landline phone network?
A true Cloud MSP can help you put pen to paper, and figure out where your opportunities for savings lie. Cloud computing may have plug-and-play installations, but the groundwork you must do ahead of time requires a systems expert to manage. Cloud computing future trends can put money in your pocket, if you do your homework.
#2—How Can I Use the Cloud to Future-Proof my Company?
Any MSP can tell you how to migrate your current systems over to comparable cloud systems. But the right MSP will be able to help you look down the road at your system needs. Do you plan to rapidly expand? Are you adding more systems on? What kind of user experience will you need for your customers/employees/audience in three years? Five years? Ten years? The right MSP can help turn the future of cloud computing technologies into your best business strategies. They can help you to purchase the right packages that can scale for your future, so issues like expansions or product additions won’t require a total platform redesign a few years down the road.
#3—What Cloud Services Should I Use to Stay Ahead of Emerging Security Threats?
The good news is, cloud services like Microsoft Windows 365 Cloud PC already have robust security measures like multi-factor and zero trust authentication baked into their system. But even with those protections, there’s other issues you need to think about.
For instance, if a power outage or cyber attack took down your system, do you have a secondary cloud backup provider that can download and reboot your network? Are your remote login services up to the task of protecting your network? Is your staff trained well, and often, about how to avoid cyber threats? Are there security gaps in the systems you’re using now, and what should you be doing to close them? The future of cloud computing has the potential to be safer and more secure than ever. Cloud computing can be the key to making your organization truly cyber resilient in the face of cyber attacks.
#4—How Can I Use Cloud Computing to Improve Connection, Transparency, and Productivity?
In any discussion of cloud computing future trends, a Cloud MSP should be showing you ways to improve collaboration on your network. Microsoft’s suite of office cloud based office tools are brilliant at this, with programs like SharePoint for sharing documents and news, Teams for creating an enterprise grade chat and networking ability, and Outlook for managing schedules and Zoom meetings. That kind of investment is an easy decision for most organizations.
But have you thought about the other ways cloud could benefit your business processes? Right now, a majority of software and business processes are being developed into cloud-based streaming options. In many ways, the future of cloud computing will someday just be thought of simply as…computing. The right cloud MSP can help you determine which systems you need to convert to a cloud option, both now, and in the future.
Worldwide Public Cloud Services End-User Spending Forecast (Millions of U.S. Dollars)
|Cloud Business Process Services (BPaaS)||46,066||51,027||55,538|
|Cloud Application Infrastructure Services (PaaS)||58,917||80,002||100,636|
|Cloud Application Services (SaaS)||120,686||145,509||171,915|
|Cloud Management and Security Services||22,664||25,987||29,736|
|Cloud System Infrastructure Services (IaaS)||64,286||91,543||121,620|
|Desktop as a Service (DaaS)||1,235||2,079||2,710|
BPaaS = business process as a service; IaaS = infrastructure as a service; PaaS = platform as a service; SaaS = software as a service Source: Gartner (August 2021)
#5—Will Cloud Computing Help My Organization Meet Our Regulatory Requirements?
For our parting point, let’s talk about how Cloud computing can impact the regulations that surround your processing and storage of data. If you’re in the law profession, or run a medical practice, or process customer payment data, you know, there’s strict fines connected with data breaches. Cloud data storage services can help in this regard, because their security procedures are generally world class and continuously updated. The opportunity for local server failures or user error is greatly reduced.
Even so, your storage and data handing processes will need to align precisely with industry standards. You may need specialty providers that work with your industry vertical. You should also consider specialized employee security training. And don’t forget to give special thought to issues like download speed, accessibility, and how well these systems can integrate into your existing programs.
The future of cloud computing is now, if you know how to reach for it. The right Cloud MSP can help you reap the rewards of cloud computing, while avoiding the pitfalls. So, what should you do if you’re ready to take the leap into cloud computing?
Future of Cloud Computing and Your Company: How to Find Your Ideal Cloud MSP
At Integris, we have a stocked online library of thought leadership around cloud computing future trends, right at your fingertips. If you’re interested in doing some homework on how the future of cloud computing could impact your company, take a look at our recent writing about the modern workplace cloud revolution, and our cloud computing/cybersecurity advice. If you’d like to know more details about what a conversion to the cloud looks like for the average company, check out our case study and backgrounders on the modern workplace journey.
And of course, as one of a handful of MSPs around the world to beta test Microsoft’s new Windows 365 Cloud PC product, we’ve got all the latest information about what it’s like to have your operating system stream to the cloud. In this video our director of operations, Matt Topper, gives it a test drive test drive. Give it a look!