|There are many factors to consider when deciding between a cloud and a premise-based solution, so how do you determine what’s right for your business? Below are a few essentials to take into account when evaluating your options.|
- Cost: With any major investment, cost is always a chief consideration. The costs associated with cloud versus a premise-based solution will truly depend on your specific business needs. Below are just a few factors that play an important role in determining the best solution:
- Company size. If you are evaluating costs for a single site, depending on your size and needs, premise-based can be less expensive. While upfront costs will be higher, total cost of ownership (or TCO, as it has been coined in the industry) can result in less expense since you will eliminate the monthly costs associated with a cloud solution. However, if you run a multi-site operation and do not want to invest in your own WAN network, or have the need for multiple features for a large number of users, a cloud solution can be more cost effective.
- Features. With a premise-based solution, your equipment determines the availability of features – so the cost may only be justified if many people are in need of the feature. With cloud, your provider can typically offer a variety of high-end features and implement as few or as many as you need, with costs included in your monthly fee.
- Scalability. Have big growth plans in the near future? If considering premise-based, it’s important to ensure that the equipment and infrastructure you invest in today can support any future growth plans. With cloud, your solution can typically scale up (and down) where you need, when you need – again, all included in your monthly costs.
- Maintenance. System and equipment maintenance is covered in cloud systems and included in your monthly fees. With premise-based, you decide the length and coverage options that are best for you, allowing you control over these costs. At the end of a maintenance term, you make the decision to renew if you desire.
- Reliability. What happens when the carrier connections (T1’s, fiber, etc.) to your premise fail? With a premise-based phone system, if your carrier connections are down, so are your communications. With cloud, a trustworthy provider will have the equipment located in a data center with reliable backup and redundancy to ensure uptime. Even if your office is down, your phone system is not. You can continue to conduct business as usual – without your customers realizing you are having an issue.
- Staying up-to-date. With a cloud system, staying current is easy. The provider will always have you on the most state of the art system, and you never have to worry about being obsolete. With premise based, you will need to keep up with the software and hardware upgrades to stay current.
The above are only a handful of considerations to take into account when evaluating the best choice for your business. As with any major business decision, it is best to involve your vendor partner to help you evaluate all aspects of your current and future business as well as the many options available to you to determine the right course of action. Contact a Parallel team member at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about cloud and premise-based solutions.