Turning to expert service providers can help ease the burden of migration and improve a business’s return on their investment. Still, there are even greater rewards to be reaped by incorporating managed cloud services into an even bigger picture.
When looking to maximize their investment, organizations should consider the impact of several technology elements on their cloud migration, says Jason Mackay, General Manager at Comparex Canada. “The number one challenge businesses face around cloud today is a lack of the resources and expertise,” he says. “A bundled service like our Cloud Complete can quickly start businesses on the path to cloud success, but taking an even more complete view will let them to take their cloud initiatives to the next level.”
Making the most of the cloud, Mackay suggests, requires a holistic adoption that incorporate four must haves:
- Mobility – There’s little question of the strong relationship between innovation and mobility. A recent study conducted by IT World Canada found a direct connection between organizations that invest in innovation and those that embrace mobility. Of organizations that allocate 15% or more of their IT budget to innovation initiatives, more than half (52%) have a formal mobility strategy in place, while less than one-third (31%) of those that allocate less than 6% do.
Whatever the device being used, or document being retrieved and worked on, mobile security is an absolute necessity in cloud migrations. The Comparex Desktop and Mobile Security Add-on for Cloud Complete provides endpoint protection, security management and administration, mobile device management, and Windows Intune device management, application management and PC management from the cloud—all as a managed service.
- Business Continuity – The cloud offers an ideal solution for backing up valuable and sensitive data. In addition to complete backup, the ability to restore quickly and simply is equally critical. Backup solutions must be tested and verified to ensure they are functioning effectively.
But a backup is also only as good as its ability to be readily restored and its ability to be fully verified. Mackay points to the Office 365 Backup Add-on for Cloud Complete offering. The solution continuously backs up to the cloud with a simple one-click restore, and includes unlimited backup of Office 365 data, as well as backup of Exchange Online, SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business.
- Collaboration – The cloud provides a tremendous opportunity to boost collaboration, but employee adoption is crucial. Another Cloud Complete add-on—Custom Intranets—maximizes the use of SharePoint Online to improve collaboration.
To make the most of the platform, Comparex creates a custom SharePoint company portal. The company designs the template, including company branding, and migrates users to OneDrive for Business. Comparex provides weekly live training on the portal and collaboration features of Office 365, as well as performing quarterly feature releases to extend the portals capabilities.
- Support – As cloud improves productivity and organizations incorporate mobility, they need to look for support beyond the traditional office hours. This is where organizations may need to look beyond even the support offered by Microsoft to its Office 365 Premier users, Mackay suggests. Comparex Cloud Complete Support provides a North American-based support center for users, administration and end-user training services, expert support engineers accessible through live chat, telephone, email or text and, importantly, critical support around-the-clock.
Although each technology element is independent—and can be added “a la carte” to Comparex Cloud Complete subscribers, as needed—the real benefit comes from them in combination, Mackay says.
“Adding mobile device management and security, backup, portal and collaboration and 24-7 expert support to a business’s cloud initiative, and having it all provided as a managed service—is the complete package that many small and mid-sized businesses need.”