If you are still using a locally hosted email server, it may be time to start considering a cloud email solution. For years now, we have been recommending Office 365 to our clients for a number of reasons. Still, many business owners are reluctant to make the change for several reasons.
With a locally hosted email server, you pay a lot of money up front to purchase the hardware and software licensing. Then you are able to forget about the cost for a little while. That is until a component fails on the server, and you not only have to pay for the hardware, but you will also have to pay a technician to come and repair it. Since it is not a set monthly cost though, it can be a hard pill to swallow to have to start paying every month.
A great time to make this transition is when your email server is starting to reach the end of its life. However, you don’t want to wait until it’s completely dead to make the switch. If you wait until a system failure, you run the risk of losing all of your archived emails, and your transition period to the cloud will not nearly be as seamless.
If you wait until your server is at least a few years old, you should have been able to see the return on your initial investment, and have a budget to replace the hardware. Now you can repurpose that money to cover the monthly fees for your new subscription service to Office 365.
Another reason some people are reluctant to move to cloud-based email is that they are concerned about security. When the email server is located on premises it can give business owners a sense of control over the device. They know exactly where their critical business data is being stored, and that helps them feel secure. This would definitely be a false sense of security though.
On-premises servers have a greater chance of being hacked, as most small businesses don’t have the robust equipment larger companies can afford to prevent security breaches. Not only is the server threatened by external security risks, but it would also be affected by any viruses contracted by employees in the office. These servers could also be threatened by break-ins at the office.
Another excuse we hear from companies is they are worried about what can happen if they have no internet access, or if the cloud service goes down. The reality is that this is a risk you run no matter if you are running a local email server or if you are using something like Office 365. The difference here is that there are many more instances where a local server could crash than a cloud service.
An on-premises server is subject to internet and power outages at the office and even disasters like the fires that so often threaten Southern California companies. You can also lose access to your email if the server itself suffers a hardware failure. On the other hand, cloud services rarely go down. They are built with failovers and redundancy to help prevent outages from occurring. The only times you will not be able to access the cloud email server is if YOU have lost connection to the internet. This can be easily resolved though with a trip to a local coffee shop. The same cannot be said for a local email server.
If you are still on the fence, make sure to call us and get a quote to move your company to cloud email. It may not look as bad as you think!