January 21, 2010 - 12:00
Small and medium-size businesses (SMBs) can benefit a great deal from Cloud-based services but this does not mean they have to do away with their existing infrastructure, GFI Software, a leading infrastructure provider, said today as it announced its ‘Hybrid Approach’ to security and messaging for SMBs.
According to GFI-commissioned research, just over half of SMBs in the US use one or more hosted/managed services. Fifty-six percent said they used these services because of easy Internet access and scalability while 46% pointed to the lower costs involved. Faster deployment (43%) was also a key consideration. However, taking the plunge also depended on hosted providers giving assurances on application performance, lack of data privacy/security and systems failure/redundancy (62%). Just under half (47%) said customization of the services was a high concern.
“The dilemma for many SMBs is how to reap the benefits of Cloud computing without dismantling their existing infrastructure or dealing with the inherent risks that come with Cloud-based services. The dilemma is deciding which delivery model is best. The answer often is a mix of both, depending in the infrastructure needs of the business at the time,” Walter Scott, GFI Software’s CEO, said.
“Customers and partners are looking at the flexibility of the software delivery model as they need to quickly adapt to changing economies and market influences. The model we are proposing is that customers can have Cloud product offerings work with their existing on-premise software to give them the benefits of both. The beauty of this approach is that start-ups can get down to business with relative ease and lower costs while established companies can address weaknesses and inefficiencies in their current set-up by using a complementary service in the Cloud,” he added.
GFI’s Hybrid Approach addresses many concerns SMBs may have because it gives them the ability to choose the solution they need to protect their network, email server and/or manage their archives, irrespective of whether it is hosted or on premise. Sometimes, they may require a combination of both.
“The Hybrid Approach allows an SMB to switch back and forth between the Cloud and on-premise solutions with relative ease or adopt a set-up that has both, thereby maximizing the strengths of both delivery models and avoiding the inefficiencies inherent if separate delivery models were used. SMBs also benefit from defense-in-depth, business continuity and redundancy – not always a given with the non-hybrid delivery model.
“Successful deployment of technology – be it through a hosted, on-premise or hybrid delivery model – depends on SMBs understanding perfectly well what they need and why. Applications and services need to be run where they are most efficient, and not just because cost is the most attractive option. Long-term, falling into the ‘all-Cloud solution’ trap can prove to be more expensive, time-consuming and problematic. Being able to choose between delivery models and at the same time also benefit from quality solutions that are cost-effective and designed for the SMBs is one very good reason why SMBs should actively explore vendors which adopt the hybrid approach,” Mr Scott added.
For more information about GFI’s Hybrid Approach read the following White Paper: http://www.gfi.com/whitepapers/Hybrid_Technology.pdf.
GFI Software provides the single best source of web and mail security, archiving and fax, networking and security software and hosted IT solutions for small to medium-sized businesses (SMB) via an extensive global partner community. GFI products are available either as on-premise solutions, in the cloud or as a hybrid of both delivery models. With award-winning technology, a competitive pricing strategy, and a strong focus on the unique requirements of SMBs, GFI can satisfy the IT needs of SMB organizations on a global scale. As the leading infrastructure provider for SMBs, we have offices in the United States (North Carolina and California) Canada, UK (London and Scotland), Austria, Australia, Malta, Hong Kong and Romania, which together support more than 200,000 installations worldwide. GFI is a channel-focused company with over 10,000 partners throughout the world. We are also a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner.