How does a cloud solution compare to an on-premise application? How do you know if the cloud is right for you? We're glad you asked! Take a look at the following overview and let us know if you have further questions.
|IT Infrastructure||Limited or no internal IT resources and/or no desire to invest in or support additional IT infrastructure||Established IT support with software domain expertise and a solid backup and security strategy.
|Access||Via the Internet or mobile device||Client server for local workers or Terminal Server or Citrix for remote employees.|
|Company Profile||Fast growing companies who want to invest in an affordable solution capable of growing with them and want the flexibility of anywhere, anytime access without investing in IT infrastructure.||Established companies with the ability to make the required upfront investment to purchase and implement the software. Minimum timeframe for an on-premise solution should be 5 – 7 years.
|Remote Locations||Have multiple sites or many geographic locations but do not want to build or support remote access to existing network.||Have multiple sites across geographic locations and have a supporting network infrastructure.|
|Software Investment||License fee enables the company to use the software. One predictable monthly payment covers everything from infrastructure and vendor software support to daily back-ups and software upgrades.||License fee enables the company to own the software. Upfront purchase with annual maintenance / subscription renewals in the 20 – 25% range.
|Initial Services Investment||Implementation services tend to be less than on-premise solutions since installation, infrastructure prep, and some configuration are completed by the SaaS vendor.
||A good rule of thumb is to spend anywhere from $1 - $2 for every dollar spent on the initial software license.
|Ongoing Services Investment||Business process consulting as necessary.||Software upgrades every 12 – 24 months; technical support and business process consulting as necessary.|
|Hardware / Infrastructure Investment||A reliable Internet connection||Traditional IT components including server hardware and software, data backups, storage, disaster recovery, and remote access and network connectivity|
|User Interface||Web technology that enables an intuitive, customizable interface and many of the user-friendly features Internet users have grown accustomed to in web-based applications.||Mature technology with a traditional Windows interface.|
|Software Customization||Think “configuration”, not heavy customization||In-depth customization and integration capabilities; appropriate for companies with a high-degree of customization or a need for extensive custom programming services.|
|Implementation Time||Varies by project size and scope, but implementation time tends to be less than on-premise solutions since installation, infrastructure prep, and some configuration are completed by the SaaS vendor.
||Varies by project size and scope, but implementation time tends to be a bit longer and more involved, perhaps adding 1 – 2 months to the timeline of a comparable cloud-based implementation.|
|CapEx vs. OpEx||The subscription model converts traditional technology capital expenses into an operational expense, which can be positive for maximum cash flow flexibility.||Software and hardware are capital expenses|
What types of applications are available in the cloud? The list is long and gets more compelling every day! David Cieslak, Arxis Principal and popular technologist, highlights a bunch of them in a presentation called "Best of the Cloud."