There’s been much talk about the cloud as the best solution for meeting today’s changing needs of technology in school districts. Though most IT Directors are advocates of moving to the cloud not everyone’s heads are in the clouds.
For many, moving away from on-premise storage and access is a bit unsettling. Data security and privacy is high on the list of concerns for schools especially for Canadian schools who feel uncomfortable with their data hosted across the border. Their concerns about service providers stem from possible use of data, ownership and regulation.
With the new Microsoft data center opening in Canada in 2016, many of these concerns will likely fade and schools will discover that cloud migration is a necessary step. Some advantages of the Cloud:
1) Budget friendly: Cloud solution requires minimal capital investment so when budgets are tight, using the cloud to increase storage is ideal. With the subscription model, you pay only for what you need and use on a monthly basis. On the financial side, what would have been considered a capital expenditure now becomes an operational expense which is easier to accommodate and approve.
2) Scalability: If budget is limited and you want to launch a new software program, you can tackle it in bite sized forms as a pilot program hosted on the cloud and expand as needed and as budget allows.
3) Increased Accessibility: With a cloud solution, students and staff can have untethered access to materials anytime. There’s no need to be on-site in a classroom to access files or programs from a server.
4) Fosters Collaboration: The cloud allows you to collaborate easily by auto syncing documents reducing the need to save various versions which often cause confusion and duplication of work.
5) Easy Deployment of new programs: If you plan to roll out new software or perform an upgrade, installations and upgrades are completed at a fraction of the time with less labour involved.
Deciding whether to do partial or total delivery via the cloud is something that school districts must review. Evaluate your current situation and consider the impact, benefits and feasibility given your current system. If you need expert advice or guidance, contact us.