So you’ve done some research, you’ve heard the rave s, you’ve contacted a trio of firms and now your cloud network proposals are on your desk. And you’re shocked, simply shocked. You had read one of my previous articles in which I stated that the cloud can potentially save you from 21% to 67% over your current network costs. But now you’re looking at a monthly fee that’s double what you’re currently paying for a managed service plan. What gives?
Well, it’s a matter of looking at what I call the “Total Cost of Ownership”. I have even developed an interactive tool that helps you uncover the true cost of generating that computing power. Why? Because it’s very easy to overlook the true costs when they’re somewhat hidden by other factors.
Let’s start with that vendor payment. Put that at the online accounting firm in Canada top of the list. Now make sure that is a plan that covers all services. If it is not, check your records and look at everything spent on IT above and beyond that monthly figure for the last thirty six months. Now add that to the list. If this includes equipment purchases add that in, too, at this point. Now divide all of those excess charges by thrity-six and add them to the monthly IT feel
So we’ve got your monthly bill, your excess IT service charges and your equipment purchases. Now look at your monthly electric bill and see if you can determine how much has been dedicated to your server and PC’s. Servers usually use about $25 per month and PC’s about $10. Multiply by the number of PC’s and you should be able to get a good monthly figure. Add that to the list. If you have a backup system that you’ll need to replace in the next three years add that, too, as well as any anticipated firewall or software updates.
Now think about who in your operation handles those IT issues that don’t rise to the level of a call to the vendor. This person is like the old “key operator” you used to have for your copier. Now calculate how much time this person and you and anyone else who gets involved spends on a daily basis handling the little things, the slowdowns, the shutdowns, the server reboots, the software issues, etc. Multiply this figure in minutes by 780, the number of working days in three years and then divide by 60 to determine the number of hours spent. Now calculate the hourly wage, on average plus the minimum twenty percent benefit and multiply this figure by that number of hours. Add that to the list.
By now you should be able to see that the “true” cost of your network is considerably more than what you might have thought. But there’s another factor to consider. With a cloud network on board, you and your team will spend a tiny, tiny fraction of the time formerly spent on IT, thinking about IT and talking about IT. This time is now devoted to the actual business you are in. Isn’t that refreshing?
So when considering the cloud, give it a fair chance. And when all is said and done, and we’ve seen this over and over, the increased efficiency the cloud brings to an operation makes it absolutely worth it’s weight in gold. One of our clients, a CPA firm, actually told us that they would have paid one thousand, two thousand more per month to go to the cloud. Why? Because even though they admitted they were way more productive with a cloud network it was the increased security for their clients’ data that really gave them the peace of mind they needed.
So the cloud might look like it costs more but when all is said and done, it’s one of the best investments in cost savings and improved productivity you’ll ever make. And you can bank on that.