Data, software, and infrastructure are increasingly moving to cloud storage. What was once part of a central network housed through a remote server is now just as secure, cheaper and more scalable on the wider web. Many businesses are yet to make this move, believing it expensive and time-consuming.
Others do not know how to do it. How does a business go about selecting the right managed service provider for their enterprise? There are so many choices from large multinationals to small specialists, industry-specific and generalists.
It may feel like a minefield that could go horribly wrong if choosing the wrong service. Follow this checklist of the most essential elements in deciding which managed cloud service is best for your business.
Look For Certifications And Adherence To Standards
This may not be your first consideration, but there are good reasons for why it should be a higher consideration. Ensure the managed service providers adhere to recognized industry standards such as ISO 27001, GDPR, or the UK government’s Cyber Essentials scheme.
You and they have a legal obligation to protect data. You should also require the highest standards for protecting your infrastructure and application security. If standards change, do they have the infrastructure in place for adhering to new regulations?
The vital component is to ensure that your intended managed service provider’s engineers are certified, and as many as possible. The more certified engineers, the better the scope of solutions available.
Consider Relevant Experience
Next, you should consider the experience of each considered managed service provider. How many years they have been in business is undoubtedly essential. However, far more critical is whether they are used to dealing with enterprises of your size or in your industry if there are unique requirements.
If you’re a multinational, a small cloud provider may not necessarily have the resources or the experience for handling multinational and extensive networks of information and infrastructure, although it is not always a given and you should never assume this is the case.
To be more specific, if you have already found a cloud service that you think would work for your enterprise or you already have a cloud service such as AWS, you want a provider that has experience in managing and administering that platform rather than one unfamiliar with your needs. Ensure that the provider’s tools align with your current environment and technology.
Support And Service
Do they have a full support service? It is natural to assume that your managed cloud service provider will also offer 24/7/365 full support package, but this is not always the case. Some offer support limited to problems only at their end.
If there is an issue with the data or with your infrastructure, they may not be able to help. This is a big issue, and you do not want to find out too late that your cloud provider doesn’t offer the support you need and must bring in a 3rd party company to bridge the gap.
However, in these cases, it is often that they have a preferred support partner. You will need to factor in whether they too are experienced, the cost and the range of package of support before you enter the market looking for your own third-party support enterprise.
Look For Signs Of Scalability And Innovation
When investing in such an important business service, you need to know that they are going to scale with you. Consider also their existing service portfolio. You may be looking to upgrade in a few years; you don’t want to go through the process of finding another provider. Your business is likely to grow with the years, as will your needs, as will technology.
Is the current package scalable to potential future needs? A business that does not scale and innovate will likely become irrelevant fast. When this happens, you won’t be getting the best deal, the newest standards, or access to new technology. It’s also likely that the service you pay for will not keep up with developments in such issues as security and backup.
How Will They Manage Your Data?
Technical concerns to consider include where the managed cloud service provider will keep your data. It should adhere not just to the country where it is handled, but also where it is stored. Laws in other jurisdictions may differ. If it’s held in an EU country, for example, it will be subject to GDPR. It will also be subject to GDPR if it contains data on any EU citizen, regardless of where in the world the data is held.
It is up to the customer to know in which jurisdictions their data is held. If your requirements are specific or niche, it’s important that the provider is aware of these and will adhere to the law and regulations. This could lead to legal issues for your business if a provider is chosen without the relevant certifications, knowledge, experience, or understanding of their legal requirement.
If you are interested in even more technology-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels, then we have a lot to choose from.