Blog February 21, 2019

Head in the Clouds | Understanding the Benefits of AWS Versus Hosting on Your Own Infrastructure

It is no secret that Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the leader in cloud platform provision. From NASA to Netflix, and from Tesla to Samsung, large scale businesses continue to select AWS as their platform of choice instead of operating their own, on-premise infrastructure.

But AWS is not just restricted to the Goliaths of different industries, the David’s of the world can use this technology, too. Small-scale and growing businesses also often prefer using AWS instead of hosting their own solutions in-house. This has made AWS successful to the point that in Q2 2018, the cloud service made up for 55 percent of the total profits of Amazon.

So what exactly is it that has both large scale organizations and small-sized businesses flocking toward AWS instead of operating their own infrastructure?

There’s more than one answer.

AWS is More Cost-Effective

One of the most talked-about advantages of the cloud is that it tends to be cost-effective compared to operating your own infrastructure. This statement often holds true whether you have a growing business or one that is already the size of a large enterprise.

While you are expanding your business, your growth could either surpass your expectations or prove to be underwhelming. In the case of the former, your needs outgrow the infrastructure you currently have in place, which would necessitate constant upgrades as your company continues on its path for success.

Yet, if your business is still in the phase of finding its footing and still needs significant ancillary support, then spending a fortune on infrastructure (that you wouldn’t even use to its fullest extent) wouldn’t be wise. Using the cloud helps you tackle these issues since you only have to pay for the computing and capacity that you are using, if at any time you need to upgrade, you can with just a few clicks.

AWS is Not Physically Restricted

Having a physically restricted infrastructure is limited by design. You will have your data hosted and operated through one single point of operation. If anything was to happen to that physical location, whether through a natural disaster or an unforeseen event such as a fire hazard, then you not only lose your infrastructure but also the major components of your system installation with it.

Having your systems operating through the cloud such as AWS which could be accessed from anywhere and does not restrict itself to a single location could be a game-changing experience. The risk of loss is minimized. Since AWS operates in its own geo-distributed datacenters with your systems hosted within its structure, being concerned about natural disasters or other security risks could be a thing of the past.

AWS Can Work with an Array of Solutions

AWS comes pre-equipped with the ability to run a variety of solutions over its platform. It not only lets you host basic HTML and conventionally built websites, but it also has compatible SDKs for application-based hosting. AWS can be used to store large datasets, run advanced algorithms, or power your next great IoT invention. The limits of AWS are few and far between when it comes to getting the most out of your hosting infrastructure.

Whether your enterprise runs on a digital-experience platform termed as something more than a website, or if you need to host your company’s management platform in the cloud, then AWS can help you run more efficiently.

AWS Makes Its Easy to Operate in Multiple Locations

Having your own infrastructure in multiple locations could be a recipe for disaster. Why? Because managing redundancy in different replaces requires coordination and collaboration at both the technological and personnel level that very few companies are able to execute. At the very least, it could be a burden in terms of logistical and financial management.

On the other hand, if you have multi-site operations then operating out of just one data center might not be feasible for you. Even if your hosting solutions are run through the physical infrastructure at your headquarters, your other locations would still need updated solutions in many other areas.

For example, if you deploy a system update over your physical infrastructure, if the update is not manually installed at your other locations, this leads to a lack of standardization, which may cause issues later on.

Deploying updates via the AWS cloud means that they are being rolled out to all locations without any restrictions. Employees at various locations may use your system and access the same uniform version of your upgraded application.

AWS Minimizes Your Resource Requirements

Operating your own physical infrastructure requires you to have additional space. The extra space must also be maintained in a manner that it is ideal for your servers and their continuous operations. That means security, power lines and connectivity, temperature control and more.

As your operations grow, that excess space must only grow with time, which not only requires you to spend your resources on equipment but on additional physical space as well.

In addition, the IT staff that you have to dedicate to your servers come with a cost as well. Instead of performing other tasks that are needed out of your IT department, they’ll spend an increasing amount of their time maintaining, updating, and securing your servers.

If you choose AWS for your infrastructure then you do not have to keep freeing physical space within your workplace, maintaining your servers, or dedicating resources to your IT department to ensure that the infrastructure keeps running properly.

AWS takes care of it all, giving you ample time and resources to solve other problems and focus on the end consumer.

But AWS Does Have Its Own Set of Drawbacks

While AWS provides you with all that is good in the computing world, it does take a few things in return. For some organizations, it may not be a big compromise, but for others, letting go of those features may be a deal breaker. Knowing what you are signing up for is only prudent.

Lack of expertise. There’s a lot of talk about the IT Skills Shortage and how hard it can be to find and retain qualified staff. You’d think this is an area where business leaders would be more proactive, but once again, they usually reach out to us when they’re about to lose a key person – or they’ve already lost them.

Security. It’s getting harder to separate security from downtime since cyber attacks are a leading cause of downtime. However, the good news is that a lot of the customers we work with are taking a more proactive approach in this area. They know they need to strengthen their defenses, and they also know they don’t have the in-house staff to cover everything.

Cost Optimization. Ironically, while many companies adopt a cloud-first approach to help them cut costs, too many don’t manage their cloud-based resources well. The biggest culprit is adding resources or features that may be needed at the time and then forgetting they’re there.

Application Modernization – If you are to install your firm’s essential solutions onto AWS, then you have to account for a variety of factors. Make certain that the application was built for cloud usage and that it has been effectively modernized for the cloud.

That’s Where Connectria Comes In

With high scale web solutions for larger organizations and the assurance for smaller business that even in their limited budget, they can get the best that technology has to offer, AWS is a universally beneficial solution.

But that doesn’t mean that AWS is perfect for your business or your clients. What you may well need is an AWS partner that understands how to get the most out of the cloud and manage it on your behalf. Security, performance, and upkeep of your AWS infrastructure requires a trusted partner. Here at Connectria we have more than 20 years of infrastructure management experience and boast some of the most unique and powerful partnerships in all of the AWS ecosystem. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help your managed services organization get even more out of AWS, we would love for you to contact us here.

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