Aug 19, 2008
When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough OutsourceTougher economic times compel businesses to look for ways to cut costs while still maintaining the essential infrastructure and services they need to operate and grow their business. An excellent way to do this is outsourcing IT requirements to a third party hosting provider.
Hosting providers provide a safe home for information technology needs with their redundant connectivity, hardened infrastructure and bulletproof security. All this is supported by a team of dedicated IT professionals whose sole objective is to keep IT infrastructure safe and running smoothly 24x7x365.
A business of any size can derive a number of benefits from outsourcing IT infrastructure to a hosting provider. First and foremost, there are significant cost savings. Hosting in-house, for example, requires significant man-hours and qualified personnel, which does not come cheaply. Using the services of a hosting provider, on the other hand, reduces that significant piece of overhead to a single monthly fee.
On top of the cost savings, outsourcing IT infrastructure to a hosting company frees up internal resources. Instead of having IT staffers configuring servers or trying to handle tricky email issues, it makes much more business sense to have them working on high priority tasks related to the organization’s core operations – ranging from anything such as desktop support to application development. Working with a hosting company gives IT staffers the time and energy to do their jobs better. And in smaller organizations where IT expertise is scare, outsourced hosting puts mission-critical needs in the hands of knowledgeable professionals – exactly where they belong.
Outsourcing to a Web hosting provider also gives businesses peace of mind. Rather than having to worry about security threats, downtime or technical glitches, businesses can be certain that their infrastructure is in the hands of someone that understands exactly how to handle the intricacies of information technology in an online environment. This peace of mind is sometimes overlooked, but can be an integral component of a well-run enterprise.
Hosting companies also provide a very desirable degree of specialization that delivers performance levels local IT or design agencies can’t match. Hosting providers reside in world-class data center facilities and are devoted to a single purpose: the housing, security and protection of valuable content. Everything they do, from the software development to the construction of facilities is designed to provide an environment that is up and running around the clock. Local IT shops are built on a different area of specialization. They design, install and customize. Hosting and managing infrastructure is not their core competency and expecting them to be able to do this at a high level of precision is an unrealistic expectation. The logic is pretty straightforward: you would not ask a bicycle repairman to fix your car.
Finally, outsourcing to a hosting provider is akin to having an advisory service which does not charge exorbitant consulting fees. Businesses can consult their hosting provider on any matter relating to technology and get a knowledgeable answer. What are the pros and cons of hosting on Linux? Should I be outsourcing my email to a hosting provider? Should I be upgrading my dedicated server’s memory and hard drive? Is a virtual private server a better option for my growing business? These questions and many others fall under the expertise of a hosting provider and businesses can expect an informative answer. And conveniently, it is very likely that the hosting company offers the product or service that can address the needs expressed by the customer.
Hosting providers rent space on a server or an entire physical server to support IT infrastructure ranging from email and web sites to advanced applications and databases. The server renting business, however, also translates well into related expertise such as data backup and storage.
Backup and storage services do not just provide a home for valuable data and content, but they also guarantee protection against its loss or corruption. With the help of replication software and redundant physical infrastructure, hosting companies are able to keep duplicate copies of data that is retrievable in real-time even when a disaster strikes.
In a world where growing amounts of both personal and business data are being stored in an online environment, the demand for this type of service will only grow in the future. This creates a strong opportunity for the hosting business, which is ideally suited to serving this need.
Outsourcing IT infrastructure to a third party hosting provider is not only cost-effective, but ensures reliable and best in class performance. Web hosting companies are able to handle a wide range of IT requirements and businesses should consider working with them to improve their business processes or leverage the online world to create bottom-line value.