Techtalk – Telecoms the key to the Cloud?

May 30, 2013

This month Paul Holborow, Head of IT Services at RMT Technology, looks at the part played by having the right telecoms infrastructure in place in unlocking access to cloud services.

There is a lot of talk at the moment about Cloud services, most of it by people trying to sell cloud services. But before you rush in to the cloud you need to consider your telecoms infrastructure first.Whilst connecting to data centres to access computing services offers tremendous opportunity for cost savings, better security, access to resources and support and so on, none of these will be fully realised if your internet connection runs slowly.

Yet this basic fact is often over-looked by those selling such services.For many SME’s, on-line backup can represent a first step into the Cloud, yet even this can be hampered by poor upload speeds provided by traditional ADSL or consumer broadband lines. Trying to send all data, without first stripping out data that can be archived or duplicate data, compounds the issues as more data is sent up lines that are unable to cope with the sheer amount of traffic.
Performing a simple line test is a start but it’s not enough on its own. You need to consider not just the amount of data to be uploaded, but also the load that is going to be placed on the line in terms of the number of users, the number and type of applications to be accessed, aswell as the amount of data. Accessing remote servers that are of the right specification to handle graphics and applications will also impact on performance and should inform you of the type and size of line you need.

Whilst it’s tempting to think that a quick call to your existing provider might be all that is required, you need to think again. Lead times of 3 months for upgrades to existing lines are becoming standard, and once signed up you have little control over the process. Dealing with a recognised IT provider can help but remember that telecommunications infrastructure is dominated by just a handful of providers.

When it comes to appraising the return on investment of cloud services, some might find that additional costs of switching to leased lines, Ethernet First Mile or Fibre lines a barrier to cloud computing. Potential cost savings are available in terms of call and lines rental costs, equipment replacement cycles, licencing and productivity. Cloud computing also allows SME’s potential access to better security, disaster recovery and business continuity facilities which they might not have now. This is becoming a reality for many SMEs who have the right telecoms infrastructure in place.

For more information, please contact Paul Holborow at RMT Accountants & Business Advisors Ltd. or call 0191 256 950


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