Unified Communications in the cloud: debunking the myths
Longstanding preconceptions about cloud can inhibit embracing the change
More organisations than ever before are looking to move away from traditional Private Branch Exchange (PBX) telephony solutions to embrace Unified Communications in the cloud. But there are some longstanding preconceptions about cloud that can inhibit embracing this change. Below we look to “debunk” six of the most common myths.
#1 UNIFIED COMMUNICATIONS IN THE CLOUD ISN’T MAINSTREAM YET
Cloud isn’t the future – cloud is happening now. The latest research from independent industry body The Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) shows that some 78% of UK businesses are using some element of cloud within their IT provision. This figure is expected to rise to 85% within two years. Cloud penetration is on the up with three out of four organisations who already use cloud expecting to increase their usage in 2016. In fact, around six in ten organisations foresee moving their entire IT estate (including their Unified Communications) into the cloud in the future.
#2 CLOUD ISN’T SECURE
The latest research by The Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) shows that 98% of organisations haven’t actually experienced a security breach of their data held in the cloud. Many cloud solutions can offer significantly greater protection than similar applications running on-premises.
The key is ensuring that your business systems reside with a cloud provider who can demonstrate that your data is held securely. You should choose a cloud provider which is transparent about its security systems and complies with industry best practices such as the Cloud Industry Forum ‘Code of Practice’ and meets industry standards like ISO 27001 - the certification for Information Security Management.
The provider you choose should also match the level of security that you need, for example, if your data must reside in the UK then you’ll need to choose a cloud provider with UK data centres and potentially a UK sovereign business.
#3 TELEPHONY SYSTEMS ARE BETTER HELD ON-PREMISES
Business systems that reside on-premises are often at greater risk than if they were to reside in the cloud. If something were to happen to the physical equipment that they reside on, such as theft, fire, flood or malicious activity, there can be serious consequences including downtime and data loss. Just think of the potential cost of even one day’s lost trading, which could easily happen if you lost your telephony.
When business systems are based in the cloud, they benefit from all of the security and resiliency features your cloud service provider offers and can be run across two geodiverse datacentres, so loss of one doesn’t mean a loss to your business.
#4 MOVING TO THE CLOUD WILL DISRUPT BUSINESS
Moving business systems to the cloud is a potentially complex process and one of the key challenges for IT managers today. The key is to work with a partner who can help provide a robust transition strategy. With careful planning, moving your telephony to the cloud can be an almost seamless transition for your users with a minimal learning curve and huge business benefits.
#5 INTERNAL IT TEAMS WILL NO LONGER BE NEEDED
When you adopt cloud services you free up time for your key IT resources to deliver projects that add value to your organisation, as the service provider will manage the day to day operations of the hosted application. Even with hosted applications, there are very often elements that can be managed by the IT department and it is these elements that unlock the additional value that the richness of the latest cloud offerings can provide. Why spend time managing when you can spend time optimising?
#6 MOVING UC TO THE CLOUD ISN’T COST EFFECTIVE
Skype for Business from Outsourcery is delivered on a subscription basis so you only pay for what you actually use. Unlike on-premises infrastructure which can lead to wasted capacity and overspending and/or a lack of capacity at critical times, cloud gives the flexibility to scale up when additional services are needed and scale down to avoid under-utilising IT capacity.
There is no upfront investment in expensive hardware so you can move your costs from a CAPEX to OPEX model, plus there will not be any costly technology refresh cycles. So, not only do you get the business benefits of a modern UC solution, but you have a predictable monthly spend and a significantly lower phone bill.
WANT TO KNOW MORE?
Hopefully we’ve convinced you that these common cloud myths simply aren’t true. If you want to find out more about moving your telephony to the cloud and how we can support your unique requirements, get in touch with our Skype for Business experts today. We can provide workshops with your key decision makers to demonstrate the technology and provide proof of concept environments to help your organisation experience the benefits of Skype for Business.
Jon Seddon, Head of Product, Outsourcery plc
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.