15 tips to choose the right Cloud Storage Company
As a Small business owner, it is natural that you want your business to grow. With time as your business grows other things also gonna increase such as inventory, the total number of employees, number of your business locations. With more business growth, your data will increase too. When you are running a business it is important to handle and store your data properly.
So this is when comes the question, where you will store your data? As it is complicated to handle those data physically in your file cabinet some business owners want to have their own on-site servers to store their data on cloud storage. For that you also need IT staffs to manage those servers. In spite of your business growth, the price associated with installing on-site servers and hiring a skilled IT team to maintain them, can be really costly.
Solutions of your this problem is to outsource your data to a cloud storage provider. But as those data are very important for you it is really important to choose the right cloud storage provider or it will jeopardize your whole business.
So when you are looking for a cloud storage provider you need to make sure that they meet all of your business needs. Analyze what are the reason’s you are looking for a cloud storage provider and what you hope to get from the service. For example, some cloud storage firms specialize in helping businesses that use Macs and other Apple products. As some cloud providers are bigger than others but some others are much more focused than the other cloud providers. Before choosing cloud storage provider, you should do your home works. So here is the things you should look for your cloud storage provider:
Security System: When you are looking for a cloud provider checking their security program is first come to the list. Make sure your cloud storage provider ensure security to protect your data. It is always is a good idea to assess the security software to see if this meets your all needs. If the wrong people get hand on your data then it will be disastrous for your business. Consider not only virtual security but also physical security.
Reputation: Find out what other users are saying about a company before doing business with them. You can find out the quality of service they give from its clients feedback. Research online what clients are talking about a company from various forums, search engines and popular feedback sites like Just Host.
Downtime History: If a cloud provider is inaccessible to users via online for a period of time then this is downtime. Although most cloud providers claim that their downtime is zero you would surprise to know that even well-known cloud provider like Amazon experienced downtime. So check your cloud provider downtime history before considering them. Because downtime can cost your business so much you should choose a provider with fewer downtime history. Some provider regularly posts their cloud outages history online. If you can’t find a provider downtime history logs ask them for the record.
Hardware: Although the technical side of a cloud computing handled by your cloud provider, it is still important to know their data center quality. If you are selecting a local cloud provider you should check their data center personally to see if those are professional or not. Especially look for the quality of their cooling system and power supply.
Support: The idea behind a cloud storage provider to spare you stress of managing your data. Since cloud provider mainly going to manage your data excellent customer support is necessary according to your needs.
Customer Support should be available 24/7 with the aim to help you with small and big problems. You should have your own support manager to help you in a crucial situation. Look for the quality of support they are going to offer from their website like phone, chat, email, remote etc. You can get an idea from what quality of support they have already provided to their clients from feedbacks. You can also track their response time.
Data Center Locations: Security of your data is directly related to your location of your data center. Imagine that you are doing business with some guys with a couple of servers in a spare room somewhere. Those aren’t the guys you want to store your data in. So find out about a cloud provider data center location and how protected are they from thieves and natural disaster. Check if your cloud provider has SSAE 16 certification which show that company products, systems and data are compliant with the industry security standards.
Third-validation and recognition: As we talked earlier reputable organization like American Institute of Certified Public Accountants regularly audit if a company is fully up to the standard. Beside looking for SSAE 16 certification check if a company has ISO 27001 certification. ISO 27001 is an international standard for measuring information security management systems.
Encryption: Security is a major concern for cloud storage user. So find out how well your data are going to encrypted. You can look for a cloud provider that offers personal encryption file so that you can encrypt and decrypt it according to your needs. This personal encryption is also gonna help you control who has access to your data including cloud provider. Files should be encrypted not only when transferred but also when your files are stored in the system. This is called Robust encryption.
Established Customer Base: You can tell a lot about a company from its customer. If a cloud provider has growing number of small business client that’s mean that this is a start-up business. So there would more risk factor. If some business left a cloud provider indicate that there is something wrong with that cloud provider service. So its always worth a shot to talk to that business to learn more why they left?
Backup: No matter how secure your cloud data centers are they can’t protect it from everything. So you should know about their backup policy. How often backup will be performed? Where backup data will be stored? How are they gonna restored back data when needed?
Compliance: Look for a cloud provider that is compliance with your business standard. Although you can outsource your data to store to a cloud provider to save money but you can’t really outsource your liability. And that can cost you more than you can save.
CheckÂ CloudWedge.com to find out more.
Insurance: What if you lost your valuable data and no matter how much precaution you took they can’t recovered it. How your cloud provider gonna compensate your loss. So insurance for data loss is the best you can do at that point.
SLA terms: SLA or Service Level Agreement is the legal agreement between you and your cloud provider. So you should look at it carefully before signing it. Even though a cloud provider promise you good service and then they gave you poor service and later turn out you can’t really do anything about it legally because of the SLA terms. So personalize SLA terms according your needs before signing them.
Who has access: Who has access to your data is the most important question for security. How much access do a cloud provider gonna has on your data. Can you easily give access or revoke it according to your needs if someone left your business?
Setup: Once you choose your cloud storage provider its time to set it up with your local devices like computers. All the well-known cloud providers like Amazon, Google are gonna offer you online guides to set up. You can even ask for technical manager for settings.
Well, there are so many things to look at but I think its worth your time. We can never know what’s gonna happen, but we can make the best decision with the information we have in our hand.