Of the considerations that might be preventing your organization from embracing cloud-based file storage technology, costs will most likely be one of them.
Due diligence towards cost analysis for any business decision is certainly wise. However, prices for the actual cost of cloud services are extremely reasonable for any size business, especially when compared to the traditional solution of maintaining or adding to your existing internal infrastructure for the same purpose.
Expenses involved with migrating to the cloud:
- Rent vs. Own: When you add an internal server and all related hardware and software for file storage, you’re typically purchasing these items. But with a cloud-based solution, you simply pay a monthly usage fee. An ongoing smaller expense spread out month-by-month can be more appealing as compared to a one-time, acquisition cost “spike.
- Resources: For an in-house file storage solution, your IT team will obviously need to devote time to set-up, install and test a new server. When migrating your data to the cloud, there will also be associated costs with this data move. However, a cloud-based solution will be void of all on-going maintenance costs that will necessarily persist for an in-house solution.
- Growth / Flexibility: With in-house hardware, companies are limited by a finite capacity. Once that is reached, new or replacement hardware must be acquired at a cost. On the other hand, cloud-based file storage is extremely scalable and can grow as your company does without the worry of having to add to your existing infrastructure.”
- Security: Whether you use on-site storage or cloud based storage, security is always a critical consideration. By definition, the fact that cloud-based providers are constantly monitoring their servers and network, updating software with security patches, and using high-level data encryption, might provide an edge over your in-house environment. But in any event – despite the risks - the costs associated with addressing all security concerns for an in-house solution can mount significantly.
- Repairs: Everything with a beginning has an end; and your servers are no different. With a cloud storage provider, you do not need to be concerned with hardware or software upgrades as these are included in your fee.
With regard to specific costs for some of the major cloud storage services, here is a look at a 2015 article as provided by PC Magazine:
Many will view the concept of moving to the cloud for file storage services as they would a decision to “buy” vs. “rent”. As with any cloud-based service – albeit file storage service or application service – it is never “owned”. Rather, these services are categorized as “Software as a Service” or SaaS; and that service is always based on a monthly (or yearly) basis. From an expenditure perspective, this cannot be changed. And so, first and foremost, a comfort zone with this financial approach must be reached in order to consider a move to cloud-based storage services. But once that is done, the benefits – with regard to cost and otherwise – can be great.
Now that you understand the costs associated with migration your file storage to the cloud, you need to decide whether or not your in-house staff is capable of performing this task or whether you need expert help. Read "Cloud-Storage Setup: DIY vs. Hiring A Cloud-Storage Professional" for help with this decision.