What should organizations move to the cloud?

Author:Collins, J. Carlton

Q. We've decided to move our technology to the cloud; should we put everything in the cloud?

A. You probably shouldn't put everything in the cloud, but moving nothing to the cloud isn't the right answer either. Your best answer probably lies somewhere in between. There are basically four types of technology you should consider moving to the cloud, as follows: email, data, backups, and applications. These types of technologies are discussed below.

What should you put in the cloud? Email? Data? Yes Probably Backups? Applications? Some Some Everything? Probably Not Email. Because most of us access email using multiple devices and locations, it makes sense for most of us to host IMAP-based email in the cloud. This way, 100% of our email messages, both received and sent, are always available on every device we choose to use and in each location we attempt to access our messages.

Data. It often makes a lot of sense to host your active, shared data files in the cloud, whether they are data files shared by multiple users or data files shared from multiple locations by a single user. However, this rule applies only to your current or active data files; your older, rarely accessed data files from years ago should probably be archived locally. Hosting these older data files in the cloud may create unnecessary file management efforts and may expose older, sensitive data unnecessarily.

Backups. Some terrific cloud-based backup systems are available, and using them to back up your current, active data may make sense. However, these services can be expensive; therefore, your older data files should probably be backed up and archived locally. In many cases, only your current data files, say, for the last one to two years, need to be backed up continuously.

Applications. Many of your applications, such as AutoCAD, Excel, Outlook, Photoshop, PowerPoint, and Word will run much faster when installed on your desktop...

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