It is probably impossible to find a business that doesn’t use e-mail for communication in any way. While transmission media such as the traditional post still exist, use of such channels is nowhere near what it used to be.
Over the past decade, it has gotten increasingly more obvious that the future of many technologies lies in a digital or cloud form. This means that traditional single purchase systems are disappearing as a subscription-based payment model takes its place. E-mail transit systems are also expected to make the jump as the years pass and cloud e-mail systems such as Microsoft Office 365 are already in place for those who are considering switching.
The thought of a subscription-based model is a bit off-putting to those who are more comfortable with a “single” spend, however, there are quite a few reasons why you should consider using a cloud system in your environment. Check out the below outline of said reasons.
No Infrastructure Management Needed
In an on-premise e-mail system, the IT team needs to manage the systems that work together behind the scenes. This means that they need to set up and maintain all the required servers, they must ensure that the various services and applications run smoothly, and they must be equipped to deal with any anomalies that may pop up at any time.
When you use a cloud e-mail system, there is no longer a need for infrastructure that resides within your environment. It is a Platform as a Service (PaaS) type system that means IT administrators only need to be focused on administering the application and the users.
This lack of administrative overhead allows for time savings as focus can be used for other important tasks.
When many people hear about subscription-based payment, the first thought is that there must come a point where the sum of the interval payment exceeds the figure of a single spend.
First, quite a long time needs to pass before those two numbers are close to equivalent. Consider that a server costs thousands of dollars and you may need a couple to manage the environment. Subscription costs are usually about $4 – $20 per mailbox per month. By the time the two figures are the same, it is probably time to upgrade the on-premise infrastructure, which is not something that is necessary for cloud deployments.
Second, this mindset fails to consider the value of associated utility overhead and the opportunity cost of the time the IT team must spend on infrastructure administration.
This is one of the big selling points of cloud-based systems. Software vendors typically offer a support package along with their products. Traditional single payment systems were always and continue to be plagued by finite support periods. This means whenever awkward issues pop up after the support contract has expired, if the IT team cannot figure out the solution, the company is left with a dead system. While many vendors offer per hour paid support after said expiry, this is only an option if the version that was purchased is “new” enough.
Cloud systems are built on the concept of lifetime support. Presumably because funds are exchanging hands on a continuous basis, not only is there a permanent guarantee of support, but you are also provided with the latest updates and versions whenever they release.
High Availability (HA)
While you can technically build HA into an environment with replication and failover mechanisms, cloud-based systems allow for redundancy with no administration required. Furthermore, providers usually have a farm of servers, which means that not only is it unlikely for your e-mail system to crash, but downtime is also kept to a minimum.