Should Your Business Use Cloud-Based File Sharing?
When consumers first started making purchases online, e-stores had to combat the notion that purchases were not secure. Then consumers learned about the convenience and safety of online buying. Now such purchases are routine.
Many businesses similarly resist storing and sharing important files in the cloud. However, there are many benefits to using cloud-based file-sharing services, including safety. Understand the features of cloud-based file sharing so you can make an informed decision about it.
- Security | Vital documents can be more secure on a cloud-storage site than they would be on a hard drive or server on your premises. With on-premises storage, theft or fire can destroy your files. Online services not only store your files away from your premises, they encrypt data during transmission and storage. Though all cloud-based services are subject to being hacked, you still have protection because your files are encrypted. Even if someone does access your files, they can’t read them.
- Automatic Backup | The problem with backing up your files yourself is that it can be so inconvenient, you don’t do it. You or an employee must set aside time to back up the files, and this task can receive the lowest priority in a busy office. Online storage services automate the backup process. You set the time you want backup to occur, and the service does it for you.
- Versioning | Cloud-storage services can update your files as they are revised. All versions of the file are updated, including for mobile devices. Every time you save a file, it gets updated for everyone who uses it.
- Collaborating | When you share files in the cloud, coworkers and stakeholders can collaborate from their own locations and devices. Even if multiple users make changes to documents at the same time, the cloud-based file-sharing service will update files with all of the changes in the order they were made.
- Cost Savings | To get an accurate cost comparison with local storage and sharing, you must factor in the cost of storage equipment and the hours of employee time required to back up files. Many businesses find cloud-based file sharing less expensive in light of these considerations.
In addition, you can consider the increased efficiency of being able to collaborate with employees in diverse locations and varied times, and still have the latest versions of documents.
You can save money by accurately assessing the amount of bandwidth you need. This can save you fees associated with exceeding bandwidth. If you anticipate your bandwidth needs will increase, you can save money by getting the extra bandwidth up front when you sign up for the service.
Each business is different; your needs are not identical to your competitor’s. You will have to evaluate whether cloud-based file sharing and storage will help you run more efficiently. Consider not only your present situation, but also your future needs based on growth projections.