There is no denying that the cloud is the future of IT. It allows greater scalability, flexibility and cost savings over a traditional IT infrastructure. Whether you are looking to move to the cloud today, or in the future, there are a few best practices to follow to ensure a smooth transition.

Examine Service Level Agreements closely before committing
Be sure to understand the details, such as how long does the service have to be down before it is considered downtime. How quick will you have access to data in the event of an outage? The devil is in the details — as the saying goes.

Follow your business needs
The beauty of the cloud is you only pay for the services you need and use. Users choose the type of application they need through a web interface and each service has a fee, SLA and integrated enterprise security management application. Carefully size up your business needs before looking to the cloud for storage. Consider which applications are most appropriate for cloud storage. Businesses should also consider the performance characteristics of the application when choosing which data to put on cloud storage

Repurpose your current resources
If your business already owns servers, you may be able to use the cloud to add more nodes. This allows businesses to breathe more life into an existing investment. For instance, you could use combine your existing server to build an internal cloud for employees and supplement it with a cloud server when you need to grow the cloud.

Plan for the future
Even if you aren’t ready for the cloud now, it is best to start thinking about how you may use the cloud down the road. This will allow you to properly budget for growth or for future hardware/software refresh expenses. Determine which parts of your business are suited for the cloud and which may be better hosted in-house.

Consider hidden costs
Cloud storage providers will tell you the basic cost per gigabyte of cloud storage up front to help you figure out how much it will cost you per month depending on the amount of data you need to store. Providers may also charge extra for data transfers, metadata functions, or copying and deleting files. Businesses must also consider the costs of connecting to the cloud, perhaps with a T1 line.

Considering a move to the cloud? Contact ACE IT Solutions today at 908-704-0400. We can evaluate your current technology infrastructure and help you determine the best way to transition your data to the cloud.

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