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Across the world, companies in every industry have already embraced the cloud computing revolution. Flexible, customisable and secure, the cloud has much to offer to local businesses and many are already benefitting from the advantages that a cloud server offers.

Cloud servers give you total control on the resources that are available at your disposal, allowing companies of all sizes to fine-tune the cloud to fit their needs.

The cloud is dynamic and small companies can quickly ramp up their service to meet a peak in demands whilst maintaining full control on the costs involved. When demand on your servers slows down, you can scale down your cloud use accordingly.

Many business owners think that the threat to data security will be dark cloud in their horizon, and therefore think twice before trusting their precious information on cloud servers.

Here at BMIT we take data security very seriously and the cloud services that we offer are all backed up with the support offer by our dedicated team of a professional IT engineers, ready to step in at a moment’s notice.

There are different types of cloud server architecture to meet the needs of every business. At BMIT we offer:

Our team is always on the ready to provide you with contingency planning and data disaster recovery plans. Having a cloud-based backup service gives you extra reassurance in case of a data disaster.

Recovery is easy and immediate, ensuring the least amount of inconvenience and disruption for you and your clients. All the data on the cloud is transferred in an encrypted format and stored in our state-of-the-art facilities with various physical security measures in place.

Your business has a lot to gain from harnessing the power of the cloud.

BMIT offers companies both a flat monthly subscription rate, as well as a unique pay-as-you-go option for greater flexibility. Our company will provide you with technical assistance 24/7, so that your business can start soaring on the cloud and never losing its ground.

Go cloud, now!

Hybrid Could Malta

 

There are a number of best practices which are aimed at helping organizations  to significantly reduce the cost and complexity of their disaster recovery as well as testing their procedures out. 

First of all, you and your business must always be prepared for any type of disruption. You never know what might hit you, so conducting an extensive risk analysis and getting input from key stakeholders, such as operations people, department managers and application development managers is the only way to go. 

 

Be in the know

Ensure that you, your staff and most importantly, your backup provider, understand the key systems that will keep your business running and what will make a huge difference in your business operations. 

You and your backup provider should also have a thorough understanding and intimate knowledge of your systems’ interdependencies and which systems need to be brought up first.

 

Make sure the plan can stand alone 

When a disaster strikes, the staff who wrote the recovery plan may not be available to execute it, so you have to make sure your disaster recovery plan will work with or without the people who developed it. Do not hesitate to ask someone other than whomever wrote your plan to take care of disaster recovery when you’re testing it out.

 

Challenge the business 

Business unit managers will exaggerate and say they need an application recovered right now, but that application might not be as mission critical as they believe. Challenge those individuals to think hard about how long they can really make do without that application or module.

 

Test and test

A review of your plan on paper is important, but it is not enough. In addition to tabletop tests, you might need to surprise your staff with mock disasters during which your staff must handle themselves well and execute the disaster recovery plan down to the details.

 

Adjust 

So you’ve shocked everyone and ran a mock disaster for your staff. What do you do with the results of the test? This is a critical part of disaster recovery planning. First, create an action-item checklist out of your review of what worked well and what didn't, then speak to the concerned staff members. If you are working with an outside provider, you should document what went wrong and use that report to outline your expectations for the next test, as well as, of course, any disaster that might just happen.

Next - Read our article about the cost of data disasters and how to avoid having a data disaster yourself

DATA CENTRE MALTA - This article originally appeared in the Malta Report of the eGaming Review Magazine

Changing the Rules of the Game

Outsourcing IT operations to a managed data centre has become an essential component of the strategy of internet-based companies that do not possesses the resources to develop an in-house IT solution. Practically every aspect of a business’ IT requirements can be outsourced thanks to managed data hosting and cloud management.

By entrusting your IT needs to a professional data centre that works hand-in-hand with your organisation to create a solution customised for your egaming needs, you can benefit from dedicated equipment and a team of experts who support you in all your data requirements. A managed service saves you the time and money needed to acquire and maintain the necessary hardware to outfit an IT department, as well as train personnel to manage it.

 

The Key Benefits of Data Management Services

As the leading and largest data centre in Malta, BMIT has invested heavily in implementing cutting-edge technology that delivers high quality colocation and data management services. As a company with extensive experience in dealing with the specific requirements of players in the egaming industry, we offer a range of solutions tailored to the specific business needs and regulatory environment that characterise this sector. 

Data management is proving to be an invaluable service for companies in the egaming business. As computing realities become more complex, the need to disentangle one’s business operation from the IT platform supporting it is increasingly being felt by business owners. Outsourcing your IT department to a managed data centre frees precious time and resources that can be directed where they are needed most: growing your business potential and caring for your customers.

Managed hosting services are ideal for new and rapidly growing companies that have limited space and capital for the technical infrastructure needed to cope with the increased demand on their IT system. The key benefit of data management service is the ability to outsource the need for IT management, maintenance and support to an external provider.

Even established companies in the gaming business entrust their data needs to managed services in order to focus more clearly on meeting their business goals and satisfying their customers. BMIT provides its clients with the same level of customisation as an in-house solution but at a significantly lower cost and with the addition of dedicated attention from our expert technical team.

  

The Importance of Cloud Services for eGaming

The introduction of cloud computing has put a further obligation on professional data centres seeking to provide services to clients working in the egaming industry. It has become increasingly common for companies to demand for cloud server management alongside their managed data plan. Data centres are also expected to understand the relative benefits and security risks of different types of cloud offerings and be able to offer clients a solution that doesn’t compromise on either flexibility or security.

In view of the importance of cloud computing, BMIT has rolled out a range of fully-automated cloud services that are built on a robust and secure infrastructure developed in partnership with Parallels Automation. We offer clients a diverse spectrum of cloud types including public, private and hybrid models. The latter has proven to be a popular solution among egaming operators since it combines the security and customisability of an in-house solution with the scalability and affordability of external systems.

The main advantage of a hybrid cloud solution for gaming is its ability to accommodate sudden spikes in usage and avoiding unnecessary and potentially damaging downtime. An application would typically run on the private side of the cloud and if demand for computing capacity increases then the application spills over into the public cloud, providing continuity and a degree of redundancy. The appeal of hybrid cloud systems is very strong and the rising popularity of egaming, especially MMORPGs, is set to fuel demand for this type of cloud service in the future.

 

BMIT and Malta’s Position in the eGaming Industry

The Maltese market has consistently proven to be a natural environment for egaming operators to establish and grow their business. Besides the benefits of a stable geopolitical and economic situation, the island enjoys a robust egaming regulatory framework that permits overseas operators to start their business with the full cooperation of the authorities. Moreover, Malta has an international reputation as a hub for IT excellence due to the presence of state-of-art data facilities and highly qualified technical experts.

BMIT builds upon and expands on the advantages that being based in Malta entails. We operate two data centres in Malta, both with full power, incredible security, and multiple communications redundancy, complemented by the highest standard of operations and management. As the largest data centre in Malta and an established service provider for online gaming customers for many years, we have developed a distinct boutique-style of operation that focuses on providing a personalised and tailored service that adapts to the unique business goals of each of our clients.

BMIT has also distinguished itself as a secure and efficient partner, being fully certified with ISO 27001 and PCI DSS certifications, thus guaranteeing peace of mind and security to our customers. To ensure that our customers always have the highest uptime possible, our technical staff provide on-site, round-the-clock monitoring of the cloud system, as well as performing proactive maintenance. As part of our effort to consistently achieve this, BMIT is always looking into upgrading and enhance the current system to provide a better and more up-to-date service to clients.

 

Meeting Present and Future Industry Needs

In order to provide a managed data centre service that fits better with the needs of the gaming industry, BMIT has bolstered its managed hosting solutions with cloud server coverage. We aim to be a one-stop-shop that caters for the needs of our egaming clients and this is achieved by enhancing traditional data management offers with the lawww technological advances that characterise the day-to-day operations of the industry. Our technical staff is trained to respond to the needs of egaming clients and we can also provide tailored advice on regulations and dealing with different jurisdictions.

Whereas many companies charge their customers a flat monthly fee for their data services, BMIT offers an innovative pay-as-you-go option that provides greater flexibility and control to our clients. With this option, a company can choose to ramp up the amount of resources that are available to it at peak times and pay for the extra resources used only in that period. The same company can choose to downscale consumption again later when the demand has subsided.

This payment model has become increasingly relevant for egaming companies that experience varying levels of demand on their servers due to sudden peaks of traffic and complements the infrastructural flexibility that is inherent in the lawww hybrid cloud technology.

 

Creating a Level Playing Field

The role of hosting services as key partners of both small or large organisations in the gaming sector is increasingly evident through their ability to provide customisable and cost-effective solutions that maximise their clients’ business potential. The advantages of entrusting your data to a managed service is that information will be housed in a secure facility with a team of IT professionals available round-the-clock to provide you with any technical advice you need. 

All managed services can be tailored to your business’ requirements, and both offsite and onsite support is provided whenever you need it. This has to be accomplished without compromising on safety and standards certification is one way hosting companies offer clients peace of mind when searching for the ideal cloud solution for their business.

This article originally appeared in the March/April issue of iGaming Business Magazine

What are the latest advances in hosting that will have the biggest impact on the gaming sector? 

The ascent of cloud computing is a factor which is having a great impact on gaming companies at the moment. Correspondingly, the newest trends in hosting services are mainly focused on harnessing the full potential of the cloud.

Hosting companies are looking into developing better the business applications of cloud-based computing by offering more services based on the cloud, as well as addressing any associated safety concerns.

 

Would you like some cloud with your hosting services?

Managed hosting is a must for any gaming company that needs to cater for high volumes of traffic and doesn’t have the necessary infrastructure to cope with this demand. 

Hosting is only part of the solution. Recent trends such as hybrid hosting-cloud services are increasing in popularity among gaming companies. These hybrid environments allow for better scalability and are more cost-effective for games where thousands of users are interacting simultaneously. 

An additional advantage of adding cloud storage to your managed hosting service means that you get all the personalised attention you need to tailor a cloud solution that fits exactly to your needs.

 

The increasing importance of cloud computing

Cloud computing plays a very important role in drastically reducing costs and increasing business agility. The type of cloud solution that is implemented by a company is closely related to its needs and to the nature of the business it conducts.

The rising popularity of the hybrid cloud solution is justified since it consists of a combination of private and public cloud services. This puts you in a better position to safeguard your company’s data thanks to the security and customisability of a private cloud, as well as taking advantage of the agility and lower costs of the public component.

BMIT offers a fully-customisable, reliable and flexible cloud solution and a dedicated team of professionals who can help you set up and manage your cloud system in no time.

 

Why cloud-based backup services add value to gaming providers

Most companies that offer cloud backup heavily promote this service by focusing on its simplicity and the ease of use. With an online backup, all your operations are automatically saved on an off-site server and you can manage how often this is done for periodic backups.

The process integrates seamlessly with your existing framework and provides operators with a safe and cost-effective backup solution that can be adapted according to their requirements. Many companies offer both a flat monthly subscription rate and a pay-as-you-go option for greater flexibility.

Cloud backup gives you extra reassurance in case of a data disaster. Recovery is easy and almost immediate since many services make redundant copies of your data which are stored in servers located in different geographical areas. The data is sent in an encrypted format and stored in facilities with various physical security measures in place.

 

How SaaS applications can reduce business costs

SaaS, notably cloud backup services, have allowed gaming operators to expand their businesses whilst reducing their operational costs. Other important applications of SaaS include hosted email and document storage and sharing.

These cloud-based services allow even the smallest outfits to meet their basic business needs without investing in expensive hardware. Hosted mail and documents allow employees to stay connected to the rest of the team even when they are on the move, making it easier for a company to expand its operations beyond its area. 

Documents hosted on cloud applications can be easily accessed from multiple workstations and mobile devices. Moreover, employees can collaborate in real-time on documents stored on the cloud and keep track of the changes made.

 

Standards certification for hosting services 

Finally, one of the most significant trends among hosting companies that cater for the gaming sector is the drive towards standards compliance and certification.

For example, BMIT is a ISO 27001-certified organisation, which means that all our systems comply with the stringent standards relating to information security as set out in this ISO specification. ISO 27001 provides specific guidelines about the implementation and maintenance of information risk management protocols, and is an essential requirement for hosting and management services looking to provide their clients with peace of mind.

PCI-DSS is an standard that aims to enhance the security of data transmitted through card payments for services rendered. Here at BMIT, we have a PCI-DSS certified online payment system which guarantees the safety of our clients’ information when they pay with their credit and debit cards for our services. This is another important certification which any business looking for a serious hosting service will be inquiring about.

 

Keep the game going 

The role of hosting services as key business partners to organisations in the gaming sector is increasingly evident through their ability to provide customisable and cost-effective solutions to their clients’ needs. 

This has to be done without compromising on safety and standards certification is one way hosting companies offer clients peace of mind when searching for the ideal cloud solution for their business.

This article originally appeared on the 2014 edition of the ICE Totally Gaming Magazine, distributed to thousands of attendees at the event.

Data is the lifeblood of modern organisations. And just like the real stuff, you don't want to lose any of it any time soon. 

Given that companies today collect more data than ever before, how are many of them considering the critical issues of data management and backup? When the data hits the fan, it isn’t easy to clean up the mess that’s left behind.

 

They never saw it coming

Auditing firm KPMG, in its Data Loss Barometer report (last published in 2012), outlines the current state of data loss across various industries. The results show a yearly increase of 40% in data loss incidents and the most significant among these occur mainly in the technology and gaming sector. What is the number one type of data loss? Personal information.

No company can afford to take its data management lightly, especially when sensitive and personal information is on the line. That’s what a US hospital had to find out: the hard way.

The administrators of Cottage Hospital in Santa Barbara (CA) were shocked when they found out that a technical mishap by their data management firm may have led to the unauthorised disclosure of personal information belonging to thousands of patients. 

 

Right under their noses

It was later discovered that the security breach in Cottage Hospital’s servers had been present undetected for more than three years. From September 2009 till December 2013, the data was laid bare to the outside world, like low-hanging fruit ready for the picking by hackers. Over 32,000 patients could have had their personal details siphoned off into the hands of unknown individuals.

Whilst the hospital immediately took the necessary actions to take the compromised server offline, the aftermath of this incident remains unclear. Cottage Hospital has issued an apology to its patients, but it still has to face the embarrassment over this big oversight and the consequent loss of trust from its users.

According to the same report by KPMG, the healthcare industry accounts for 7.6% of the total data loss incidents reported yearly, which is less than half the 16.4% of security breaches that government data systems are responsible for. However, it fares only slightly better than the technology and gaming industry, which together account for 8.6% of data loss incidents.

But whatever your odds of having a data loss incident, the consequences will remain the same. Cottage Hospital now scrambles to find a more reliable data management partner and risks being sued by its patients over this serious security breach.

 

Adding up the costs

Picture this. Employees who should be busy working sit idly while their work piles up. Customer service grinds to a halt under the pressure of incoming complaints and help requests go unanswered. Salespeople dealing with new business partners suddenly find themselves tongue-tied and stuck for replies in the face of a possibly hostile line of questioning.

These are the immediate costs of a data security breach.

However, the real costs of data loss are more complex. What kind of value do you place on precious information that is irretrievably lost? Professional firms like BMIT offer companies the possibility of co-locating data in multiple sites for extra security in case of data loss.

A 2012 poll conducted by Consumerlink in New Zealand found that 80% of the respondents said they would terminate their dealings with a company that suffered from security vulnerabilities that led to data loss. Almost half claimed that they would take legal action against the company. The researchers concluded that customers perceive data loss as a serious breach of trust and that they are ready to vote with their feet, and their money, if it happens.

 

Solutions

Almost all data loss incidents can be prevented using simple, manageable policies and procedures. 

The key word is planning. Ensure that you've planned ahead so that if disaster strikes, you're covered. Ask yourself (or your IT experts) what measures are in place to protect your data, which of your data is absolutely mission-critical and what would happen if it were lost.

The costs of housing, running and maintaining equipment for data management is not inconsequential. Organisations that manage their own data internally are forced to invest heavily in infrastructure and trained personnel.

The best solution may be to outsource data management to a managed service like BMIT that can look after your data for you. Furthermore, companies that use specialized hosting and data security firms decrease their costs even more by purchasing only the services they’ll actually use.

 

Up in the cloud 

Advanced managed hosting firms such as BMIT also provide gaming providers with hybrid cloud solutions for their data storage needs. 

A study carried out in 2012 by the Technical and Business Information Systems Department of Magdeburg University in Germany about data management for online games concludes that the safest architecture for cloud-based gaming, especially MMORPGs, is a hybrid solution that combines both public and private cloud hosting and thus ensures maximum data security. 

 

Better safe than sorry

Data management will surely be one of the major IT topics we face in the years ahead. It’s inevitable provided the enormous databases more businesses now find themselves owning. Speak to experts in the area such as BMIT and make sure that your data is being taken good care of from the get go!

Secure your data today!

In a world where IT becomes ever more central to the operations of a business and data needs are more complex, handling the technology behind it is not something for the faint-hearted. Taking a do-it-yourself approach to managing IT is a costly and time-consuming affair.

Not every company has the resources to develop an in-house IT solution that caters to their business needs and it may be prohibitive for a startup to spend so much time and money on IT infrastructure.

This money and time could be more wisely spent in expanding your business and improving your product. That’s why we make it our business to manage your IT, while you focus on taking your company to the next level.

BMIT’s range of managed solutions

BMIT offers a range of managed services for companies in all industries. From colocation to cloud server management; anything that our team can do, it can do for you.

We will house your data in our state-of-the-art data centres and our dedicated team of IT professionals will look after it to ensure that everything works smoothly. All our managed services can be tailored to your business’ requirements and we provide both offsite and onsite support whenever you need it.

Leave the IT in our hands and focus your energies on developing your business.

BMIT can provide you with the same level of customisation as an in-house team but at a significantly lower cost. We also offer the same range of services as other outsourced IT companies, but with the superior level of quality and dedication which our team is renowned for.

Data centre services

Spending money on expensive IT infrastructure is one of the biggest obstacles that companies, especially startups, have to face. And the costs don’t stop there. You need to train individuals to manage the technology, regularly maintain it and - of course - find a suitable space where to house it.

BMIT’s managed data centre service lets you benefit from our state-of-the-art equipment and team of experts, who will manage and support you in all your data needs.

Whether you are looking for data co-location or cloud server services, BMIT can implement a solution that fits your requirements like a glove, and guarantees a high level of support at all times.

Our team will work to avoid any unwanted downtime and help your system get back on track should disaster strike. We will also provide you with the expert technical advice you need to optimise your system and give you the freedom to focus entirely on running your core business.

System administration

Also part of BMIT’s managed services portfolio, system administration is a key component in running a company’s IT infrastructure and we offer a personalised solution that benefits your company through significant cost savings and reduced capital spending.

Our managed system administration service includes the full range of tasks that running an IT system requires. The system will be managed by a designated technical account manager, who also serves as a single point of contact for your business to facilitate your managed services needs.

BMIT also offer companies the option to invest in the managed services they require for the timeframe they are needed. This prepaid service ensures that you pay for exactly the amount of work you need to be done, and it provides more flexibility for a company to scale up or down its commitment as its demands require.

Managed infrastructure

The suite of managed infrastructure services are ideal for companies that want to avoid the hassle of purchasing or leasing the hardware they need to run an in-house IT department. Instead, you can benefit from BMIT’s equipment that will immediately provide you with an IT system that’s up-and-running the moment you are.

Our range of managed infrastructure services include hardware management, network infrastructure, firewall management and load balancing. We will monitor your system as well as provide you with any additional support, such as monthly reports, to help you track your system’s performance.

Our team of technical experts will ensure that your operations will not be disrupted by unwanted downtime and are always ready to step in if something goes wrong. In fact, with any of BMIT’s managed services you will enjoy top-notch, round-the-clock IT support.

Powered by BMIT, driven by You

In summary, the managed services offered by BMIT are a fully-comprehensive solution to help you focus on your business’ growth.

Our team will handle all your IT-related needs and provide you with a service that meets your requirements in a flexible, efficient and cost-effective way. Every essential aspect of your IT requirements can be managed and supported by our team in the safest and most professional way possible.

With BMIT on your side, you can be free to pursue your company’s goals and provide a better experience to your customers.

Learn more about our Managed Services

Data is the life’s blood of many a modern organisation. While losing a little data might mean a minor hiccup for a company, losing too much data is veering into truly dangerous territory. When considering that companies today pay lots of attention to collecting more data than ever before to analyse and make decisions upon, far too many of them do not consider the critical issues of backup and disaster recovery.

The big data question companies need to ask of themselves is: What if it all breaks? How much will it cost us to fix it and most importantly, get our data back? 

When some kind of catastrophic failure hits a company’s data, the costs start piling up immediately as employees who would normally be busy working are forced to sit idly, unable to continue with their work.

The ‘immediate’ costs of data loss are easy to quantify; they include the hourly rate of your employees for each hour of down-time, any money paid out in interest and money in lost sales. The figures will already be considerable, but in truth, that’s not all. 

The real costs of data loss are more complex and much more shocking. What kind of value do you place on precious information, information such as your customer database, confidential client data, financial records, employee data? Worse still, what is the value of the trust and confidence your clients lost in your company when your data disappeared?

As with hacking attacks and employee sabotage, reliable information about data disasters is hard to collect as companies, understandably, don’t like to proclaim their failings. That said, we hear the phrase, “It doesn’t matter what it costs, just get my data back”, roughly about once a week.

 

Some or most data can be recovered relatively quickly most of the time. However, almost all data loss incidents could have been prevented using simple, manageable policies and procedures.  

The key word here is planning. Ensure that you’ve planned ahead so that if disaster strikes, you’re covered. Ask yourself (or ask your experts) who should have a hand in your data recovery planning, how should you formulate your budget, which of your data is absolutely mission critical and you can’t do without it. 

Typically, companies save money when they leave their backups and replication in the hands of expert companies rather than trying to run a disaster recovery solution in-house themselves. The costs of housing, running and maintaining standby equipment in preparation for a disaster is not inconsequential and organisations that manage their own data and recovery internally have been forced to invest heavily in infrastructure, often also greatly expanding their IT retinue in the process. 

In this context it is becoming more business-wise to to use specialised hosting and data security firms to decrease costs. Such service providers allow businesses to purchase only the services they actually use, rather than investing in extra equipment which is required for physical backup and recovery, some of which is barely ever used. 

If all this seems overwhelming, it’s understandable, so don’t worry. Data recovery will surely be one of the major IT topics we face in the years ahead. It’s inevitable provided the enormous databases more businesses now find themselves owning. Speak to experts in the area and make sure that you're well covered from the get go!

Secure your data today!

Data security is a key concern for companies and individuals. Not only would any stolen or lost data result in lost time and expense, it would also be potentially highly embarrassing and could expose your company to lawsuits. 

There are a number of things to consider when speaking of data security. First of all, you must locate your data. This seems obvious, but it is not. You need to know where your data resides and who exactly has access to it, be it your IT employees, sales staff, management, outsourced experts and so on. Secondly, you need to ensure that not all  data is treated in the same way. Not all data is sensitive and needs to be encrypted, so make sure you know what different kinds of data you have.

Dual Control

Dual control is a highly recommended method of ensuring that you are protected against internal sabotage or insider attacks.  Implementing dual control means that you have a fallback position for every key resource, for example if one technician is responsible for configuring your Web and SMTP servers, the login credentials for those servers are known and available to another person with technical background.. 

Being a ‘dynamic’ and ‘proactive’  company does not mean that you can afford to allow for lack of contingency planning. Make sure you have a solid Business Continuity Plan, Disaster Recovery Plan, Intrusion Response Policy, and most importantly, an up-to-date backup system (best if located off-site) from which you can actually restore. If you do not plan ahead, the smallest of issues can quickly snowball into severe data outages. 

So what can, and should you do?

First of all, perform a vulnerability audit. Have your IT department put their evil hats on, or hire an outside expert to help out.

Once the audit is carried out, get experts to help you in the development of sound information assurance methodologies. 

Do not settle for anything less than real security. Always ensure that you model your policies and processes at least at par with the best practices of the most secure organisations in your industry, rather than with those used by just anyone else. Strive for excellence as this will surely pay off in the case of any adverse events.

Finally, the best way to ensure that your data is secure from threats that come from either inside or outside of your company is to partner with an IT provider with expertise in security and secure premises. Only such a partner can truly give valuable help in putting together the right mix of solutions according to your current requirements while keeping in mind your company’s long term objectives.

Rather than building your own solutions, hiring your own staff and purchasing expensive set ups, you should leave this task in the hands of experts whose bread and butter consists of making sure your data is secure. It is much simpler and more cost effective to start off correctly right away, in the right mentality, rather than trying to change everything around later on when substantial investments have been made in systems and procedures, or worse, reacting after you have been bitten with a data outage or malicious attack. 

Secure your data today!

Do you need to quickly find some information that you know your company has in its files... somewhere? Do that easily with Microsoft SharePoint

Do you want to securely share documents with your customers or suppliers, without giving them access to your intranet? You can do that with SharePoint.

Do you have a number of teams in different locations, and do you find that keeping on top of who’s doing what is harder and harder? You can do that painlessly with SharePoint.

With its extensive features list and its highly reputed dependability, Sharepoint is an excellent wall-to-wall solution for any enterprise.

However, in exactly what ways does using Microsoft Sharepoint strengthen your enterprise and its IT? If you're thinking of adopting SharePoint in your enterprise, here are 4 things you should know about Microsoft SharePoint

 1. SharePoint solutions are scalable

Microsoft SharePoint Services are essentially a powerful collaborative solution toolkit. In fact, the creation of sites for team interaction, sharing and management of project-specific documents and files are some of the best known applications of SharePoint.

What’s less explicit and obvious is that these SharePoint solutions are in fact, highly scalable. What started out as a simple resource library shared by a small team can be easily and rapidly be scaled up to your exact needs and accommodate the entire organization or beyond. Additionally, SharePoint Services can be deployed across multiple servers in any server farm, enabling the creation of massive data stores.

2. Microsoft Sharepoint frees up IT resources

If you use Sharepoint, your IT department can focus on more important and crucial matters, rather than fritter their days firefighting a myriad minute issues. This way, your technical department can focus on big projects that drive and bring revenue to your business. Projects’ delivery is cut because those small tasks which IT is normally tasked with are handed over to users on an easy-to-use platform.

By relocating tasks to SharePoint, your business can redistribute hardware and resources to other, more resource hungry tasks and projects. 

3. You have control

Sharepoint does not allow users to go around your IT experts and set up solutions that haven’t been properly wwwed and vetted. With SharePoint, users can feel free to tailor solutions without worrying about the backend, as it’s all done in Sharepoint. If a user goes ahead and creates a Sharepoint solution which will need to be serviced by IT, the Sharepoint platform can serve as a familiar, sturdy platform that allows easy administration and support for both the end user and the IT team.

4. SharePoint is widespread 

According to its maker Microsoft, SharePoint is one of the faswww-growing applications in the entire company’s history. In 2009 alone, SharePoint generated $1.3 billion in revenues, and enjoyed an installed base of over 100 million users.

Even in more recent years, industry analysts say SharePoint has continued to surge. A recent Gartner report called SharePoint “the most widely used document- and collaboration-centered platform.”

Jeff DeVerter, SharePoint Architect at a major technical company said that in 2011 Microsoft leapfrogged Oracle and moved ahead of IBM, essentially meaning that they’re leading the charge in that space decisively. For all intents and purposes, SharePoint has won the battle for the enterprise. What this means for you and your company is that given that SharePoint is a top-rated product, thought of highly by the industry and experts alike, and with a huge user base, it will be around for many years to come. If your plan is of adopting SharePoint, you're making the right decision.

Try SharePoint today!

With its huge list of features and its high dependability, SharePoint is a highly desirable wall-to-wall solution for the enterprise.

However, in exactly what ways does using SharePoint empower your enterprise and its IT?

SharePoint frees up IT resources 

Using Sharepoint, your IT department will be able to focus on more important, mission critical business, rather than wasting their time with minute issues. This way, your most technical department places its focus on big projects that drive your business. The delivery time for projects is reduced because those small tasks which IT is normally forced to take over, pulling the department away from the really important projects, are handed over to users on a controlled, easy-to-use platform. 

Furthermore, by moving or consolidating tasks into SharePoint, your business can also reallocate hardware and resources to other tasks which need these resources more. 

You have control

Hosted SharePoint prevents users from circumventing your IT experts in the IT department and implementing solutions that haven’t been properly inspected and vetted. This way, users are free to tailor solutions without worrying about the backend, as it’s all done in SharePoint. Hosted SharePoint, unlike rogue applications or processes which sit outside of IT, risk data loss and proprietary information leaks is completely controlled by you.

If a user goes ahead and creates a Sharepoint solution which will need to be serviced by IT, the SharePoint platform can serve as a familiar, sturdy platform that allows easy administration and support for both the end user and the IT team. 

Scale up or down as needed

Solutions of many shapes and sizes tend to grow or shrink in importance and requirements along with their business. While this may present an IT nightmare when using more traditional methods, if you’re using Hosted SharePoint, this is a complete non-issue. Even if originally you had a solution for one team, it can easily be evolved into a broader, full-fledged and business-wide solution using the Hosted SharePoint platform.

Your IT department can govern and monitor applications built on the Hosted SharePoint platform without greatly increasing costs and if needed, ownership can be transferred from departments to IT using a deliberate, pre-planned process.

All the info you need

Let’s face it, we all get way too many emails, so sometimes we’ll overlook or ignore that critical message. Use SharePoint to consolidate communications within an activity stream thus streamlining communication and eliminating the workflow of email.

Sharepoint activity streams are visible across SharePoint, desktop clients, mobile clients and Outlook, which encourages instant communication within an organisation. Because activity streams in SharePoint aggregate information from multiple sources they provide an easy and effective means to get the attention of busy employees.

Try SharePoint today and get intelligently productive!