Having satellite offices is never easy for IT staff. Having international offices often represents a significant challenge for even the best trained staff. Not only do they need to balance the needs of local workers with corporate goals, they also work across multiple time zones in order to manage local and international suppliers. They must also understand the laws and tariffs that govern how you get your work done within each locale. The challenge is especially great with business and communications services like email and phone systems.
If you manage central email servers in the US and they crash at night, your US offices aren’t really impacted, but your European and Asian workers could lose out on a whole day of business while their email is down. And yet, running servers in each office could require hiring a lot of extra IT staff or paying a great deal of overtime for workers who are on-call.
Moving your IT services to the cloud could help eliminate a lot of the complexities you face, while providing additional cost savings and productivity benefits.
Moving IT services like email, phones, file backup and archiving to the cloud can reduce complexity both locally and at the corporate level. A cloud solution provider can give you a level of service reliability and security that far surpasses most things that can be achieved with an on-premises solution.
With centralized user management, cloud IT services make it much easier for your local IT staff to manage the onboarding and offboarding of employees. Additionally, the admins who were managing on-premises systems are free to focus on more strategic business initiatives.
At the corporate level, moving to the cloud reduces the complexity of your vendor relationships and the associated accounting. You have fewer bills and they’re in one currency. You won’t have to wade through local tariffs and tax laws for each global location.
Once you decide to move to the cloud, you need to choose the right provider. The wrong choice can bring headaches of its own.
To save the most money, you’ll want to consolidate as many services you can under one vendor. This enables you to take advantage of bundled pricing. It’s also a good idea to choose a vendor with flat monthly costs/user. It will make budgeting easier, and you won’t have to worry about how much data storage or calling minutes you use. Having one vendor also means one relationship to manage, one bill, one support number to call and one service/user management interface to deal with.
Make sure your provider offers 24/7 technical support. That way, all of your offices can be helped in real-time. Also, it’s a good idea to look for a vendor who provides expert onboarding and migration at no extra charge. That will save you money and reduce the likelihood of migration errors that can come from having to utilize a third-party vendor for the process.