Business agility is a top reason for adopting the Cloud

Once again the advantage of agility has come up trumps when investigating the reasons behind a company’s adoption of cloud computing. Following recent reports that indicate that the UK economy is likely to become even more hazardous this year, it is no surprise to hear that businesses are looking to become as agile as possible and work from anywhere in the world, at any time of day.

According to a recent global survey of 3,645 IT decision makers, mobility is the top reason for adopting cloud computing, with 33% of companies stating that they have switched to cloud computing in order to access information from any device. This supports the findings of our own poll (http://www.cloudmetix.net/) which found that having access to business IT 24/7 and from anywhere in the world was the key benefit to drive people to adopt a cloud platform.

We have always waxed lyrical about the importance of staying ahead of the game when it comes to business agility and by ensuring your IT systems are safe, secure, and making a contribution to business efficiencies, you can stay ahead of your competitors.

The advantages of using cloud computing are enormous. Allowing better communications across departments and multi-sites, greater operational efficiencies and more effective ways of working, cloud computing allows you to take your work with you far beyond the typical 9-5 working realms. When coupled with cost savings scalability and energy reduction, cloud computing is an attractive option for many SMEs with professional services companies already expressing a keen interest.

Of course, we have known this for a while which is why our very own Cloudmetix programme has been leading the cloud computing revolution in the Midlands for a very long time. As one of the first cloud computing platforms to be launched in the Midlands, it has already been taken up by a number of local companies who recognise that IT provision is entering a new era with Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) increasing in popularity.

Propel your business into the 21st century by adopting the Cloudmetix cloud computing programme today. Call one of our friendly advisors on 024 7640 8100 to experience Cloudmetix for yourself.

Advertisements

Simplifying Cloud terminology

…What does it all mean?

 

A recent statistic released by global researchers TNS, states that 93% of businesses see an improvement in their IT since adopting cloud…

…It is all very well being told how cloud computing can consequently benefit your business, but at Netmetix we understand that all the techie language of the different processes can be very daunting.

We have all experienced the situation of undergoing a technological process without fully understanding all the jargon on our screens, so I have put together a list of some of the common terms you will come across when adopting a cloud platform for your business, explaining them all in an accessible format:

 

IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service)

IaaS is a way of using expensive hardware without buying it outright. In order to run and control business applications you would require the usage of servers, software, data-centre space or network equipment – which can all end up being a huge cost. IaaS is a way of outsourcing it all as a full service from a company like us. This also means that your business will be free from maintenance costs and wasted office space.

SaaS (Software as a Service)

Software as a Service means that all your business’s software and its data are hosted centrally. This eradicates the need to install and run the application on the companies own computers and also places the responsibility of maintenance and support into the provider’s hands.

PaaS (Platform as a Service)

Similar to both Software and Infrastructure, receiving a platform as a service means that the operating system and associated services are also delivered over the Internet by a provider. It is a cost effective solution eliminating the complexity of buying and managing the underlying hardware and software layers. The PaaS lies between the IaaS layer and the SaaS layer.

Remote Desktop

Remote Desktop is a means of delivering a familiar Windows Desktop to users from a remote location e.g. a data centre. When using Remote Desktop technology, files, data and applications stay at the data centre and only the “image” of the Desktop is sent to the user’s screen. That way, only the keyboard and mouse inputs and pixel screen changes are sent over the Internet connection. This massively reduces the amount of Internet bandwidth required over conventional file transfer methods. It also means that the security of your valuable data isn’t compromised over the Internet because it never leaves the data centre.

On-demand self service

This means that the user can individually utilise all the computing capabilities, such as server time and network storage as needed automatically without requiring human interaction with each service’s provider.

Resource pooling

The provider’s computing resources are shared to serve multiple customers to take advantage of the varying demands over time of different customers.. This provides the user with rapid access to additional resources by demand.

Rapid elasticity

This refers to the scalability of cloud computing. It means that capabilities can be rapidly and elastically provisioned and in some cases automatically. At Netmetix we can scale your Cloud solution up or down quickly depending on your demand.

Measured service

With cloud computing the resource usage can be monitored, controlled and reported providing transparency for both the provider and consumer of the service. This means that you business will only pay for the resources you use. It enables your IT costs to match your business success.

Service Provider Licence Agreement (SPLA)

This is a means of providing customers with licenced software without them having to purchase a full software licence. This typically allows customers to effectively rent the use of the software for a specified period, usually monthly. It also means that they only have to pay for what they actually need as the number of licences rented can be increased or decreased from month to month.

Cloudmetix is one of the leading cloud technologies in Coventry. Alongside this Netmetix is ranked Number 1 on the Microsoft Partner Pinpoint website.

If you are looking at moving to cloud computing why not try it first.  With Cloudmetix you can have a 30 day trial period with no obligation.  

Simply call us today on: 02476 408100

Netmetix is No.1 Microsoft partner in UK

We are proud to announce that Netmetix is currently ranked Number 1 Gold Server Partner on the Microsoft Pinpoint website. Click Here To View

Netmetix ranked Number 1Not only are we ranked Number 1 within 200 miles of Coventry, but no other partner ranks higher than Netmetix anywhere in the UK at this point in time.

In October we announced our accreditation for becoming Coventry’s first Microsoft Partner with a Gold Server Platform accreditation, which set us apart as one of the best IT solutions providers in the region.

We’ve worked very hard to attain the accreditation, with four of our experienced technical engineers completing a rigorous examination to attain the Microsoft Certified IT Professional: Enterprise Administrator qualification.

Being a Microsoft Gold Partner means we have the technical ability and expertise to work closely with our customers and help them to streamline their operational processes so that they can focus on achieving sustainable business growth rather than on their IT systems.

It’s all about service

Cloudmetix workshop reassures Coventry of Cloud security

Our workshop on cloud computing yesterday proved successful, and we received some interesting feedback that we’d like to share!

We had a range of companies attend, varying from legal services to graphic design, all of whom can reap the benefits of a cloud computing system within their businesses.

As an IT solutions provider, we aim to create awareness of how cloud computing can benefit businesses throughout our region at a time when Government austerity measures are taking their toll on SMEs like the ones in Coventry.

Finance and legal are two sectors which are rapidly adopting cloud systems for more efficient processes; however they face a number of issues concerning data protection when using offshore cloud services. We approached this issue at the workshop by presenting images of our secure dual-data centres, which are based in the Midlands and not in some offshore location.

We were really pleased to see such a positive reaction from local businesses about the buzz of cloud computing. As IT professionals, we are always on the lookout for innovative processes that can help other businesses in our area. We have a strong vision for the future of cloud computing especially as as industry research has shown that it is being adopted five times faster than traditional IT. We want to be able to bring SMEs in Coventry forward in terms of this technological revolution.

  • 100% of feedback respondents at the workshop had faith in the security of a cloud system following our presentation.
  • The following chart shows the respondants opinion on cloud’s main benefits:Cloudmetix

 

 

Q&A session:

Q: Is there a data limit?

A: The storage space available is unlimited. A specified capacity is included as standard, but additional capacity will be automatically added as required for a minimal additional cost..

Q: We are a design agency and operate from Apple and Microsoft. Can you use the cloud on both systems?

A: It is possible to access your cloud platform from a PC or a MAC. One of our existing clients has both systems in their office and it operates exactly the same from both platforms.

Q: What happens to our business if a similar scenario were to happen as with Blackberry earlier this month?

A: Whilst in the development stages we considered every single scenario that could happen. We have dual-data centres which mean if something happened to one, then the other would still be fine. The datacentre is protected by 24/7 perimeter security and CCTV with scheduled authorised access only with a photo-ID.

Q: What would you say is the biggest downside?

A: We don’t believe there is one. If we didn’t have complete faith in the cloud system then we would not have invested so heavily into developing our own package. Our traditional IT business is growing and successful, but we see this as the future for business IT systems, therefore have optimised it to our full capability.

Come to our Cloud Computing workshop!

Although cloud computing is one of the hottest subjects in the IT world, it is not unknown for small businesses to be completely unaware of its existence, let alone thebenefits.

If you were to type the term ‘cloud computing’ into your search engine, you will discover an endless ocean of articles/blogs/stories around the subject, which can be intimidating at first glance.

At Netmetix we aim to teach businesses around Coventry and Warwickshire how cloud computing can directly benefit them in an accessible and easy-to-understand format.

If you should wish to learn about it first hand and what it could potentially do for your business then you can come along to our workshop next week in Coventry.

Details:

What? Social Media and Cloud Computing – Breakfast Briefing. The first session will look at alternatives to traditional IT methods; how IT is changing the way we work in a competitive market place, what is social media – understanding what to use and why, reaching the correct users and measuring the effectiveness. The second session focuses on Social Media Policies – what is recommended within your business.

When? Wednesday 23rd November 2011, 8:00am – 9.30am

Where? Coventry & Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce Conference Centre, Coventry Rugby Club

Cost? FREE

How?      BOOK HERE

How Cloud can make your business green

The Guardian recently reported that cloud computing can reduce your carbon emissions by 50% and other recent statistics have shown that it can save small businesses energy cost by around 90%… they are pretty staggering figures right?

At a time when energy costs are soaring through the roof, the prospect of reducing these costs whilst also having a more positive effect on the environment is enticing for business owners. Being classed as a ‘green business’ is currently a popular trend, with many big names competing to get on the Sunday Times’ Top Green Companies list.

A report called the Carbon Disclosure Project calculated that large UK companies could achieve annual energy savings of £1.2 billion if they move to cloud computing. This just highlights the significant savings that can be made when making the switch to a more efficient system.

The report which was conducted by independent firm Verdantix and sponsored by AT&T said that large companies plan to accelerate their adoption of cloud computing from 10% to 69% of their IT spending by 2020.  

The savings predominantly come from the virtual servers of a cloud system which are in place of the old physical servers linked to a custom IT system. One of the key benefits is that the customer can precisely refine what IT they require, meaning they will produce less waste and redundant capacity. The servers are more fully utilised so they are running at their optimum more frequently and are therefore more efficient that most in-house servers.

The simplicity of the equation is that cloud computing means you use less energy, which means you create less CO₂, which makes your business greener.

Cloud    =    less energy    =    less CO    =    GREEN BUSINESS

As well as the green savings in terms of both energy and cost, cloud computing also makes sense when it comes to savings on capital outlay on equipment, software and IT upgrades.

Find out how Cloudmetix can help your business save money.  Contact us today for a demonstration, or visit www.cloudmetix.net to start your free 30-day no obligation trial.

 

Top 10 Cloud Computing Statistics

With cloud computing increasing in popularity we thought we would share some of the key statistics into why industry experts think it is the way forward for your business.

  1. Last year the snow caused staff shortages for 73% of companies and of these only 39% had the ability to work remotely. Cloud computing is renowned for its ability to allow employees to access the business from any location in the world. This combats any weather related issues that could hinder business at any point in the year, providing there is an internet connection.
  2. The cloud computing market is expected to rise from $40.7 billion to $241 billion by 2020. Depending on these figures, cloud computing could save 85 million tons in annual net CO₂ savings by the same year which shows the green effect it will have on the world.
  3. According to IBM’s Chief Technology Officer, cloud computing reduces IT labour costs by 50%. When a cloud system is implemented into a business, the majority of the IT responsibility is shifted across to the providers. Therefore all software updates and technical issues no longer have to be addressed individually.
  4. Cloud computing can save small business energy costs by 90%. This is an increasingly popular incentive for businesses to adopt a cloud system.  Not only does it reduce your company’s carbon footprint, but you can also increase your CSR credentials. It’s a win/win all round.
  5. 82% of small businesses say it’s important to buy cloud computing from a company with local reach. At Netmetix we offer the chance for businesses to visit our data centre site for their own piece of mind. We find that customers are generally happier when they know their cloud provider is local. It adds the “human” element rather than dealing with a large faceless corporation that focuses on volume business rather than quality of service.
  6. 58% agree that being on the cloud has given them better control of their data. Being able to access your company’s data and IT systems whenever and wherever you want means that you are always in control of what is happening in your business.
  7. 41% of profit-focused small business owners plan to invest in the cloud by 2014. It is evident that small businesses are recognising the benefits of cloud computing as the uptake is constantly increasing.  Companies are recognising the value and benefit of Software as a Service and Infrastructure as a Service, which dispense with the need for expensive capital equipment and costly installation and upgrades of software.
  8. Industry use of Cloud Computing:  Financial Services 63%,  Manufacturing 62%,  Healthcare 59%,  Transportation 51% 
    Four main industries are predominantly using cloud platforms already for their business. This illustrates the continuity in demand for such a system.
  9. 50% agree that business agility is the primary reason for adopting cloud applications. The fact that cloud offers elasticity and complete flexibility of service to companies, means that business operations can be carried out far more efficiently.
  10. 72% of organisations using private cloud servers have improved end-user experience. We have found that cloud creates a more productive and engaging working environment for employees, leading to higher levels of motivation and performance. 

Take our Poll and let us know how you feel about cloud computing.  Is it something you have experience of already?  Or are you looking to move your business IT to the cloud in the near future?  

Cloudmetix offers you all the benefits of cloud computing and more.  We would love to give you a free demonstration, or why not try it for yourself using our 30-day no obligation trial. 

You have nothing to lose, and everything to gain through business process improvements. 

Call us today or visit our website: http://www.cloudmetix.net

London Cyber Conference highlights threat of cyber crime

Cyber security is currently a hot topic and representatives from 60 nations have come together in London to fight back against the dangerously high levels of cyber crime threats across the world.

Amongst the speakers was our own Prime Minister, David Cameron who emphasised the fact that a new approach needs to be taken with regards to cyberspace. 

Mr Cameron spoke about Britain’s individual approach to the issue. He said: “Britain will shortly set out a new approach for better online security, crime prevention and public awareness. But a cross-border problem needs cross-border solutions, which is why the world needs to act together.”

This conference follows on from our recent blog addressing the ‘disturbing’ number of cyber attacks that have been attempted upon the UK. (http://ow.ly/7gnru)

Cyber crime is estimated to cost £1 trillion a year worldwide and £27 billion in the UK alone. David Cameron pointed out that it costs as little as 69p to buy someone’s credit card information online – the same price as a song on iTunes. This highlights the level of access that the hackers are able to obtain in order to distribute such valuable information at such a low price. Business owners from across the spectrum should use this as an indication to pay distinct attention to the security of the company’s data, as just one breach could destroy a business entirely.

The conference addressed the fact that highly sophisticated hacking techniques are being employed which even challenge the level of advanced secure Government data, therefore small to medium businesses need to ensure they have professional IT experts monitoring their own IT security.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague warned that creating an international safe cyberspace is one of the biggest challenges we have come across to date and Britain has prioritised cyber attacks as a tier one threat.

Professor Ross Anderson from Cambridge University told the conference how there is a 1 in 20 risk that any given computer is sending out spam without the owner’s knowledge. On suggesting a solution for the over-riding issue of cyber crime Professor Anderson said: “If you want to defend against this kind of threat it’s not enough to just shoot a few crocodiles, you have to drain the swamp.”

At Netmetix, we can provide a team of IT experts who are constantly updating their knowledge in the field, alongside some advanced security solutions for your business. We can help your business to combat the threats of cyber crime effectively. Just visit www.netmetix.net to see what we can offer!

Protect your business as Cyber Attacks continue to threaten UK

The reports in the media yesterday that there have been a “disturbing” number of cyber attacks upon the UK re-enforces our message that all businesses need to pay more attention to their IT security. With much of our business and personal information co-existing electronically these days, it comes as no surprise that hackers continue to attempt to access this data illegally.

Iain Lobbanm Director of Communications intelligence agency has said that sensitive data on government computers has been targeted, along with defence, technology and engineering firm’s designs.

Lobbanm illustrated the threatening effect it has on the UK economy by saying: “I can attest to attempts to steal British ideas and designs in the IT, technology, defence, engineering and energy sectors, as well as other industries, in order to gain commercial advantage or to profit from secret knowledge of contractual arrangements. Such intellectual property theft doesn’t just cost the companies concerned; it represents an attack on the UK’s continued economic wellbeing.”

The Ministry of Defence has countered more than 1,000 online attacks in the last year from cyber criminals and foreign intelligence services.  These attempted hacks highlight the vulnerability of any IT system, making  it absolutely essential that regular IT audits are carried out within your organisation to ensure all systems are protected. New threats emerge all the time; therefore you could be put at risk any time.

Our free ebook gives you the basic steps you need to take to protect your IT systems and your company and personal data.  You can download it here.

Netmetix also provides a range of IT security solutions designed to ensure business continuity.  It’s important to have IT security plan in place before a cyber attack occurs and we can help with the following solutions:

  • Anti-spam and anti-virus services
  • Email anti-virus and email management services
  • Data leakage protection
  • Multiple quarantine management

Another option to warrant secure IT systems is to move your business IT systems online into a cloud platform which offers Software as a Service and inbuilt protection.  Our cloud service, Cloudmetix, offers complete IT security by taking away the need to worry about data storage and security, back-ups, software upgrades and anti-virus and anti-malware software. Find out more at http://www.cloudmetix.net/

Isn’t it time to take your IT security seriously? If you’re business is subjected to a cyber attack what would it cost you?

Charity paraglider triples personal record while raising over £1K for blood cancer charity

Determined sales executive, Stephen Groundwell, from Netmetix in Coventry managed to travel an astounding 60.5 miles in a charity paraglide, doubling his target and tripling his personal best.

Stephen was up at the crack of dawn and took off for flight at 8.30 am on Thursday 29th September from the Mam Tor hill in Derbyshire. While many enjoyed the September heat wave from land, Stephen spent 7 ½ hours soaring Derbyshire’s sunny skies in aid of blood cancer sufferers across the UK.

Many have supported Stephen in his cause and he has raised in excess of £1,000 towards Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research charity, helping to find better treatments and cures for all blood cancers.

 

When Stephen is not airborne and raising funds for worthwhile causes he is the team leader for Cloudmetix, which is a new cloud computing solution provided by Coventry IT Company, Netmetix. Cloudmetix have supported Stephen throughout his latest venture.

Stephen had originally attempted the paraglide two weeks earlier but winds were minimal restricting him from flying the glider successfully. However this fuelled his determination as he refused to submit the 8km he traveled and took to the skies again in a bid to achieve a more successful distance.

With only 2 years experience of paragliding, Stephen did extremely well to triple his personal record of 20 miles. He said: “The whole day was brilliant. I’m really happy with my success and the contribution that has been raised is fantastic. If the money I have raised can help towards saving the lives of others then it has all been worthwhile as this is a cause close to the hearts of both myself and my Managing Director, Paul Blore.”

Kate White, Director of Fundraising at Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research said: “We would like to congratulate Stephen as it’s a big challenge to have completed. All the money raised will go towards our vital research into better treatments and cures for blood cancers including leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma.”

If you would still like to donate towards the cause you can do this at Stephen’s personal Just Giving site via the following url: http://www.justgiving.com/cloudmetix or email him directly with the amount you would like to donate at stephen.groundwell@netmetix.net