As technology advances and the shift towards flexible working increases, this adoption is only going to grow.
With the almost instantaneous implementation of remote working when the pandemic hit, businesses who were already utilising cloud computing had the ability to adapt quicker than those who hadn’t. From allowing their teams to access programmes from home to the enablement of accessing data and networks securely, the use of cloud platforms like Microsoft Azure made the transition less chaotic. Since then, more and more businesses have come to realise how cloud computing can benefit their business beyond the needs brought about by the pandemic. Technological progression, flexible working and improved security are just some of the benefits that have been made possible by cloud technology.
Naturally, if you’ve got limited experience with cloud platforms like Microsoft Azure, it can leave you wondering if it is worth the investment. Especially with the financial impact of the pandemic, looking to invest in such solutions may seem risky. However, the signs that Microsoft Azure is a key solution that you should integrate within your business may be clear, if you know where to look.
Before we crack on with explaining why your business needs Microsoft Azure, it would be beneficial to offer a quick explanation of what it is. Microsoft Azure is a cloud platform that is made up of more than 200 products and cloud services, which are designed to enable you to create new solutions for your business. The powerful platform includes Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS), which provides you with the ability to replace or supplement your on-premise servers for more powerful, flexible and cost-effective computing. With Microsoft Azure you can take advantage of reliable service with 99.95% availability SLA and 24/7 tech support, which limits downtime and an economical solution that enables you to only pay for what you use. Furthermore, security is a dream, with encryption capabilities, built-in security offerings and enhanced backup and disaster recovery.
The list of benefits and capabilities provided by Azure is practically endless, but how do you know if it is the right step for your business? Wonder no longer. Here are 5 key signs that your business is ready for Microsoft Azure to take it to the next level!
One of the biggest chains that can tie your business down is restrictive on-premise systems. When the time comes for your business to grow, scaling up your infrastructure and solutions can be incredibly difficult without the adoption of cloud technology. Disruption whilst waiting for new licenses, limited capacity for data storage, infrastructure limitations can hinder your ability to scale-up your business. However, with Azure you can quickly scale your IT solutions, up and down, as required. From increasing storage capacity to easily adding team members to your network, it can all be managed quickly with little to no disruption to your business.
In this modern age, ensuring your business remains secure and compliant with current regulations can be difficult. If you’re finding it hard to ensure your processes are compliant or you’re worried about the security risks when implementing hybrid or remote working, Microsoft Azure can give you peace of mind. The services within Microsoft Azure allow you to take advantage of more than 90 compliance certifications, including over 50 that are specific to global regions, including GDPR in the EU. Further to this, you can also benefit from 35 compliance offerings that are tailored to the needs of specific sectors, such as finance, health and education.
When it comes to cloud computing, security is always a key consideration. However, with Microsoft Azure, your applications, services and data are protected by a wide variety of security tools. Alongside these tools and capabilities, you can also take advantage of a range of configurable security options to customise your security measures to meet the needs of your deployments.
Restricting your business to aging on-premise infrastructure can be costly and tie your business down should your IT requirements change, e.g. when you want to expand your business or in response to a crisis, such as Covid-19. As well as the initial cost for hardware, licences and programmes, you also have to find money for the maintenance of the infrastructure, insurance and any specialised personnel that are required to manage this technology. It all adds up and a lot of this cost may be unnecessary. Furthermore, in an attempt to make their IT more ‘flexible’, businesses may invest in unnecessary solutions and hardware, which can cause overspending whilst simultaneously not solving the issue.
Utilising Azure Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Azure Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) allows businesses to pay for exactly what they need. From simple cloud-based applications to a range of cloud resources, your business can access whatever you need from a cloud service provider on a pay-as-you-go basis, removing the need for the on-premise equivalent. Your business is no longer tied into costly unnecessary solutions, as when you no longer have use for them, you can simply cancel them and remove them. Similarly, if you need to expand your IT infrastructure for whatever reason, whether it’s due to employing a new team member or there is a need for a particular solution, you can simply add it on to your contract. With Azure, you can ensure that your business IT infrastructure is always fit for purpose, up to date and cost-effective.
There is no doubt that remote and hybrid working is here to stay, but is your IT flexible enough to adapt to this ‘new normal’? With Azure, you have access to reliable device management both on and off-site. Your team can securely access business applications, files and programmes from anywhere, just as they would in the office with Azure Virtual Desktop. Your team can work just as securely away from the office without requiring specialised remote VPNs with the use of Multi-Factor Authentication and a range of security features provided by Azure.
Many businesses use Microsoft 365 for productivity and to manage their business processes, but without Azure, it’s unlikely they’re getting the most out of it. Azure takes Microsoft 365 to a different level, as it provides you with a secure and cost-effective software solution that is effortlessly scalable. Naturally, as your business expands and you need to enrol more users into your network, data management becomes more complex. With Azure, data management processes are streamlined, with built in encryption, data management and security applications and solutions that make it easier for you to keep your data protected. With Azure and Microsoft 365 you have an incredible productivity solution with secure data storage.
Think your business is ready for Azure? Take advantage of this incredible platform with expert help and advice from Elite. Whether you’re looking to implement secure flexible working, improve security or scale your business, we can help you to not only integrate Azure into your business, but to get the most out of it. We’re proud to be a Microsoft Gold Partner and Tier-1 Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider, which means our team of specialists are capable of helping you to utilise Azure to meet the needs of your business both now and in the future. So, if you’re ready to find out how Azure can take your business to the next level, get in touch with us today!