Five Things to Consider when Selecting a Cloud Service Provider
For most businesses, sharing files and documents often centers around flash drives, emails, and external hard drives. However, all of these tools offer limited functionality in one way or another. Flash drives and hard drives require the other user to be within a reasonable distance of the original terminal. Emails on the other hand offer extended range by way of the Internet. Unfortunately, the size and quantity of files in this type of transfer are limited. Renting cloud server space can alleviate most of these issues. However, consider a few attributes about your potential provider before committing to a contract. Otherwise, you may find your organization attached to a cloud program that doesn’t meet all of your needs.
Language and Platform Barriers
International businesses face a unique problem when selecting a cloud platform. With individuals located all across the globe, your employees may require different language accommodations. Additionally, operating systems and other functionality can vary from region to region, further complicating the matter when the provider offers a downloadable app or program. While browsing potential fits to your storage needs, consider these factors. Finding out the language and accessibility limitations of a provider early in the process can save you from wasting time learning more about a service that your employees are unable to utilize.
Data limitations are also a major issue under some agreements. If your business plans on having massive amounts of data stored on the server, consider an unlimited cloud storage offering. Facing caps on storage and data can cripple organizations that rely on sharing substantial amounts of data to numerous users. Thankfully, this concern pops up early in the preliminary research and discussions. However, it can’t hurt to inquire about any potential limits that may not be addressed directly in offered programs and services. Otherwise you may face penalties and additional fees for extra storage that were not negotiated upon in the initial contract.
If you are storing sensitive data or documents, the risk of losing these items to malicious viruses, programs, or individuals is a serious matter. When browsing potential service providers place a special emphasis on learning about their security features and data loss contingency plans. A sound approach to defending private items, as well as understanding how to the handle the situation in event of a breach, can go a long way in easing your worries on the matter.
Another important factor in the decision-making process is service and amenities once you are a customer. While some issues will require corrections and maintenance from your own technical department, problems with the cloud server may present a situation which necessitates the involvement of the provider. If reviews and other anecdotes from previous customers indicate that your targeted cloud server doesn’t offer enough in this regard, consider an alternative. Asking for specifics and requesting more information on the subject when talking with a representative can also shed light on this potential issue.
Expense and Pricing Options
Of course, none of these other considerations will amount to much if the service simply costs too much. Before reaching out to cloud database providers, build a budget that outlines the maximum amount your company is willing to spend on this storage. While setting a limit may remove some offerings from the table immediately, it will also help keep your finances on track and avoid unnecessary expense. In some cases, budgets can be flexible. This allows you to mix and match optional services offered by the desired provider, while also removing unwanted features and functionality, to build the best cloud storage agreement possible.