Managing growth in successful companies can sometimes feel like you are riding on top of a bucking bronco that you can barely control. Tried and tested systems and processes that suited your business when you had one office and a handful of people, struggle to cope when you expand into different geographies or add new products and services. HR issues multiply, finance gets more complex and keeping that office culture intact are just some of the problems you will face. One approach that can really help keep you on that bronco is outsourcing your IT provision.
In manufacturing industries, in particular, we find that all the staff are production focused and although having a strong IT backbone is a vital part of the business, the overhead of having 2 or 3 technical experts always onsite is simply not feasible. Going from a handful of PC’s to perhaps over 20 desktops in multiple locations, needs a structured approach and it’s not always cost-effective to have that in-house. How do you keep your IT staff up-to-date? How do you cope when they are on holiday? Who knows where the ‘thingy for the wotsit is stored?’
By outsourcing your IT infrastructure, you get expert, strategic advice that is always there for you. Outsourcing your IT can help support growth in the long-term and will ensure you are provided with the computer solutions that will scale up with you. IT support services have experience in managing companies with multiple offices, remote access solutions and server administration. All that ‘stuff’ that causes you headaches when it fails, can be taken care of and allow you to focus on managing your growth.
A well thought out IT strategy will show your staff that new opportunities can be met head on without having to worry about the systems supporting it. We can help your finance teams minimise the increase in administration and HR can easily onboard new people, safe in the knowledge their desktop will ‘just work’.
Sound like something you need help with? Call our expert team now on 028 900 800 30 and we can talk about supporting your growth through managed, outsourced IT.
Let us keep you on that bronco!
There has been a lot of talk of ‘cloud computing’ in recent times as collaboration via online networks enables companies that are based in different locations to connect up in novel and exciting ways. Those of you working in manufacturing may be wondering to what extent the cyberspace revolution affects this most material of industries.
The reality is that successful manufacturers need to be constantly honing their process to make it as efficient as possible, and cloud offers a number of ingenious opportunities to connect up and streamline the workings of your business. Let’s take a look at them now:
Save the data
Cloud computing enables data sharing across sites in your company and compiles it into analytics that can help to streamline your business. As a result, you can head off shortfalls before they arise, enabling a consistency in all aspects of manufacturing.
Supply and demand
Interconnected cloud-based systems allow for direct and precise collaboration between manufacturers and suppliers, meaning that orders are created and amended more efficiently than ever before.
Sell by data
Sales information also feeds directly back into the manufacturing process via the cloud, so that you can see where shortfalls and surpluses arise and amend operations accordingly.
Another wing of the business that can feed helpfully back into the manufacturing is the results of the marketing campaign, what performs and what doesn’t – which enables manufacturers to respond to demand before products have even gone to market
Customer service, support and order data also factor into the all-seeing cloud, helpfully closing the communication gap between distribution centres and manufacturers.
Work, work, work
In addition, the cloud enables more efficient management of staff, payroll and working hours across different company bases so you can make sure that your assets are deployed in the most sensible and economical ways possible.
So if you’re a manufacturing firm looking to reap the benefits of cloud computing, you’ll need to employ an IT support service that knows how to make the best of these systems. Get in touch with Nimbus and we’ll make sure your company is connected up in helpful new ways.
If your company has branch offices, you will be all too familiar with the problems associated with managing a distributed network. The fact is it’s just not feasible to have dedicated IT staff based in a small office that contains less than 20 people.
However, you still have to provide them with support, secure the network, patch desktops and servers and update software. But in a traditional IT environment using outdated client-server networks, that is a painful, inefficient way to provide service.
A remote on-premise server is both expensive to maintain and difficult to secure. To secure an on-premise server properly requires an expensive firewall plus a monthly subscription along with remote monitoring and complex VPN access which is prone to failure.
Cloud services provide better security and higher scalability
By moving your on-premise servers to the cloud, you can reduce the complexity of your network and make it much easier for IT professionals to manage and maintain your distributed environment, all while reducing costs and increasing scalability.
Cloud-based servers are also inherently more secure than their on-premise counterparts. Not only is the server stack much easier to backup and restore in the event of a disaster, data centres offer much more advanced security than on-premise servers, with enterprise-grade firewalls and IPS/IDS detection services in place and monitored 24/7.
Despite this, many companies are concerned about storing their data in the cloud, and they’re right to be. But the fact is your data is much more secure in the cloud, in the same way that your money is much safer in the bank than at home under the mattress.
All cloud-based servers use secure socket layer SSL via WebDAV, IMAP, or HTTP to transmit data across the web. This is encrypted data that cannot be read by anyone but the intended recipient. Compare that with your local LAN traffic, which is not encrypted and can be intercepted very easily, especially if you have an unsecured wireless network.
A cloud-based server also makes it easier for remote workers to access their data. A remote user simply accesses the cloud server the same way as the rest of the network, without requiring complicated VPN access through the firewall, which is not always reliable and can be difficult to manage and secure.
But perhaps the best reason to choose a hosted server is the fact that they are 100% scalable. No matter if you grow to 10 branches or 1000, your server can scale with you. There’s no need for expensive upgrades or to dispose of obsolete equipment, you can start small and grow organically, only paying for the resources you use.
How Nimbus CS can help
As a dedicated cloud hosting company based in Northern Ireland, Nimbus CS can configure and monitor cloud servers for small and medium-sized distributed environments across Ireland and Northern Ireland.
We can help configure your new cloud hosting environment, handling all the setup and secure access that is required at your premises. Once your new network is up and running, we’ll still be there in the background, optimising and managing your environment to ensure it remains secure and efficient.
Right now, there is no better time to move your business to the cloud; with the current pound low against the euro, our services have never offered better value. So contact our team today and we can discuss making your IT environment more scalable, more secure, more efficient, more manageable and more fun.
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