Microsoft Azure is Becoming the Cloud MVP for Small Businesses

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Privacy concerns are top of mind for senior business and technology leaders, making the right mix of storage and deployment resources a vital conversation for small to mid-size corporations and enterprises alike. Increasingly, companies are turning to hybrid or multi-cloud solutions as a way to balance security concerns and cost for high-availability environments as well as more straightforward data storage and business applications. Public cloud is still strong, but shifts from public to hybrid cloud at the enterprise level grew to 37% in 2019, signaling a significant shift in cloud models for companies of all sizes. 

Throughout all the changes, one component remains constant: companies are choosing Microsoft Azure as their preferred cloud solution. Michael Nelson is a Microsoft Azure specialist with TLC Tech in Sacramento, CA and offers up the following information.

Benefits of Azure for Smaller Corporations

Assuring that you have the optimal technology stack for your business used to involve negotiations and expansive vendor management as you worked with different partners to provide various solutions. Microsoft’s Azure and Office 365 offer cohesive integrations and the simplicity of working with a single IT solutions provider who brings expertise in a wider range of Microsoft solutions. Putting together a comprehensive strategy is simplified with a more limited vendor array and deeper software knowledge — adding efficiency and reducing costs for smaller corporations.

Boost Security with Seamless Integrations

Security is a big concern for organizations, particularly in terms of data storage. Microsoft Azure’s fully-integrated security suite helps reduce the number of interactions between systems and add more controls that will help maintain the integrity and security of confidential data within your organization. Bringing together your storage and deployment systems under a broader umbrella within the Microsoft ecosystem may help reduce the complexity of your stack and allow your engineers and technicians to focus more on business improvements as opposed to infrastructure.

Public, Private or Hybrid Cloud?

Finding the correct mix of cloud solutions often comes down to an analysis of your business usage in terms of compliance, business applications, uptime requirements and the type and value of the data that is being stored and utilized throughout your systems. Cloud computing offers more flexible models, fewer upfront costs and a wealth of benefits, but getting the correct mix of cloud deployments will be a determining factor for long-term operational effectiveness and security. At a high level, here’s a primer on the similarities and differences between the public, private and hybrid cloud.

Public Cloud

Generally considered the least secure cloud option, the public cloud includes a wide range of solutions such as Dropbox and powerful business applications for ERP, CRM, website content management, accounting and more. Environments are partitioned for use by multiple clients and often includes IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service) and PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service) solutions.

Private Cloud

Private clouds are quite similar to a more traditional on-premise solution in many ways, specifically that they are only available to a single tenant or client with tightly protected access. The big change is that these solutions can now be deployed from remote locations, providing security without the requirements for engineering and technicians within your organization. Managed private clouds are becoming more popular, as providers find customers eager for the security of a private cloud, but without the necessary internal resources to manage one.

Hybrid Cloud

Perhaps the most difficult and complex to define are hybrid cloud options because they can include a variety of different configurations and still fall within this broad heading. Hybrid configurations can include a mix of private and public environments for the same organization, and can also include a mix of on-premise and private or public cloud solutions. While still small, hybrid cloud adoption is growing as organizations double down on privacy for specific applications.

Finding the ideal solution for your corporation requires a level of expertise and ongoing research that may be challenging for internal staff members to provide. When you work with a trusted IT solutions provider, you are gaining additional insight from professionals with deep experience working with organizations of all sizes. Leveraging this type of external resource allows your internal IT experts to focus on business growth and other core competencies.

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