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SMB cloud computing benefits: Expert advice on making the transition

Staff, SearchCIO-Midmarket.com

CIOs at SMBs are seeing their hesitations about cloud computing dwindle as organizations large and small sing the praises of this emerging infrastructure. Offering the potential for

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lower costs, greater scalability and a smoother way to incorporate mobility and bring-your-own-device initiatives, what's not to love about the cloud? Well, there are more than a few good reasons to make sure you understand SMB cloud computing benefits -- and drawbacks -- before going all in. Skepticism about security, compliance and budgetary concerns are holding some smaller companies back from reaping the vast benefits of SMB cloud computing.

CIOs' lingering anxieties may stem from a lack of educational resources, and rather than take an uninformed leap of faith into the cloud, we want weary IT professionals to first distinguish what cloud computing plan best fits their organizational needs and what immediate- to long-term cloud computing benefits they can expect. So we've searched far and wide across our sister sites to find the top expert articles, advice and guides that can prepare SMBs for a smooth transition to cloud computing -- and, we hope, result in fewer foggy, cloud-related headaches.

Public or private cloud? How one SMB made the decision

When a growing Chicago automation manufacturer saw a need to expand its IT infrastructure without breaking the bank, its IT leadership had a decision to make: public cloud or private? Evaluating factors of infrastructure control, agility and operating cost, the company determined that the move to a private cloud would provide both the staff and end users with instant cloud computing benefits. This case study provides SMBs with an example wherein the move to cloud changed the way a company did business for the better.

CSA recognizes SMBs cloud security needs

Understanding that less-tech-savvy SMBs require more guidance in matters of cloud security and compliance, the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) has launched a new working group to provide companies the direction they need. SMB needs are often underrepresented compared to those of large enterprises, so CSA is looking to provide new resources and opportunities to educate and prepare smaller companies against cloud security threats. This article explains the new CSA initiatives, and how SMBs can grow with the cloud rather than jump in blindly.

Vendors bring in SMB business by bundling cloud costs

Cloud providers are looking to capitalize on the fact that disaster recovery is becoming increasingly vital even to the most budget-conscious business. Vendors are offering SMBs lower-cost disaster recovery services by bundling these capabilities, along with strong customer service, within their cloud service offerings. This article lays out some of the most common SMB cloud concerns, and how cloud providers are marketing in accordance with these SMB needs. Take a look at cloud provision from the other side of the table.

Why some believed cloud was destined to fail at SMBs

It now seems almost laughable, but when the cloud computing model first emerged, some predicted it was destined to fail -- after all, IT professionals felt that "businesses buy solutions, not constructs." Obviously, cloud computing has survived and thrived, offering an abundance of environments, applications and storage options. Moreover, cloud computing provides SMBs with many of the same advantages as it offers larger enterprises. In this piece, Joseph Foran, director of IT at nonprofit social-services agency FSW, shares his knowledge on how the cloud evolutionary process adapted to fit business needs of all sizes and budgets, and why the cloud is here to stay.

Five answers to SMB cloud storage concerns

When most SMBs consider transferring to cloud storage, they commonly cite concerns about their existing data storage systems. Wasting your time with a disruptive or ineffective storage system could mean an equally wasted IT budget. This expert tip should help bring the weary SMB out of data storage limbo and produce a smoother, more trouble-free environment storage environment. We specifically examine five issues holding SMBs back from making the switch to cloud storage, despite the obvious benefits, and provide solutions to cover all of your cloud bases.

This was first published in August 2013

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Staff, SearchCIO-Midmarket.com
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