When considering applications to be used in small medium sized business, it is even more important to weigh all critical operations aspects and the impact of new software. The right choice of software can be the difference between a positive and negative experience for the end user (your staff!) and truthfully can be the difference between a successful implementation and adoption or a flop that simply continues to cost your company money.What should you consider and can Google business apps give you the tools necessary to create a more coherent and productive environment? Initial software evaluation should consider:
- Security and compliance
Why would your business consider new software at all? Improving your productivity without increasing costs is arguably one of the most important reasons to seek upgrades. With Google business apps you can achieve this in a number of ways, but specifically the perfectly integrated functionality of the email, calendar and IM clients create a very efficient communication tool. The 50GB inbox can save additional time as your staff don’t need to micro-manage their inbox with every large inbound email.
As you can imagine the efficiency becomes particularly important with a decentralized, mobile workforce. Instant communication between your team can easily be achieved whether they are using mobile phones, tablets or PCs (whether they are Mac or PC!) – all platforms are fully compatible with Google business apps giving a perfectly seamless communication conduit for all of your staff (no matter their hardware preference!)
You could just say, “I am running business and need to improve my bottom line,” and you need say nothing else. However, it is still necessary to accurately quantify this financial improvement. Economic gains come in two different forms:
- Cash savings on software and hardware
- Intangible savings on resource hours
Studies have shown that Google business apps can cost as little as 1/3 that of competing software, a very quantifiable cost in your implementation budget. Intangible costs are more difficult to accurately determine, but consider that one of the greatest challenges facing any implementation is the acceptance and adoption of the new software with current staff. These resource costs can be minimized with the use of Google Apps which allow your users to continue using familiar tools and interfaces such as Microsoft Outlook while all the back-end work is done by Gmail and related applications.
Security and compliance
After the staff, the most important asset for every business is the information which supports it, whether it is intellectual property, customer or vendor lists. Protection of this information is one of the highest priorities of any software consideration. The design of Google business apps only happens with the input of their world reknowned application and network security departments, the very same ones that safeguard Google’s data.A brief summary of the security within Google Apps that can be found includes:
- Password strength indicators, allowing employees to rapidly select secure passwords
- HTTPS access through fully enforced SSL connections
- Information rules to carefully limit dissemination of sensitive data
- Email filtering tools to limit spam and control inbound and outbound distribution of information
- 10 years of email archiving if needed for security, compliance and legal protection
Uptime is a constant consideration for your team. Every minute of down time can cost your business money and in a meltdown scenario a prolonged downtime with critical software can be enough to put a business, well, out of business. Google business apps will keep your team up and running with a 99.9% reliability guarantee, coupled with synchronous replication.
What does this really mean? A recent study by the Radicati Group showed an average of only 15 min of unplanned downtime per month, versus an average of 60 minutes for Microsoft Exchange. Most businesses are backing up their data on a local server and perhaps one remote drive as backup. Google offers synchronous replication which means that all Google App data is instantly saved at multiple, secure data centers. Your request for information is routed to the best available server to keep your data flowing smoothly.
Even though Google business apps are very easy to use, and install, you and your administrators may still need some support which can happened through local phone, email or self-service online support through the helpful 24/7 customer support from COOLHEADTECH.