Should we keep email on-premises or move to the cloud?

Date Added 01/02/2019

There’s no question that email is business critical.

The volume of email traffic has risen exponentially over the years increasing the complexity of managing email accounts and privileges. This has created real challenges for the IT team and has raised the question; “Should we keep email on-premises or move to the cloud”.

Why use the cloud for email?

With Office 365 you still own and control your data – and know where it resides. If you decide to move, then you take it with you.

You can also effectively manage your data and leverage the integrated Office 365 compliance solutions – helping you to comply with any legal or regulatory requirements.

There is an element of built-in security with the service – helping you adhere to operational best practices, and extra security achieved from a more layered-approach.

Then of course Microsoft currently offers 99.9 SLA’s for Office 365 applications. Not a bad uptime!

You may be happy keeping your email systems on-premises. But as the traffic grows so does the complexity and necessity for more servers costing you more money and time. By considering moving your email into the cloud – to Office 365 – you don’t have the worry of purchasing, maintaining and supporting servers anymore. Reducing the stress on your IT team??

Is it the time to consider the move?

It’s probably not a CAPEX vs OPEX decision.

Although there are the obvious cost benefits of not owning, managing and supporting on-premises infrastructure - the business needs to look at the current email system and assess whether it’s fit for 21st century communication and collaboration – of which email is an integral part. Effective scalability will be limited in outdated solutions which results in performance degradation and the inability to respond to business requirements.

The cloud provides benefits that you would not otherwise get (unless you put a lot more time and effort) like in the case with Microsoft Office 365; Teams and SharePoint online.

If there are any holes in your security now is the time to fix them. Email is usually the weakest point – it only takes one employee click a malicious link and you’re in trouble. Having multiple layers of defence is the best approach – using 3rd party solutions – like those from Barracuda (A whitepaper discussing Spear Phishing from Barracuda) to enhance the basic security delivered by Microsoft. 

The migration

We usually recommend a hybrid approach – integrating Office 365 into an on-premises environment as it allows a more seamless migration. The migration section should also highlight the cost and effort savings associated with hardware costs and administration. (You can find the techy info here)

You need to mitigate the risk of downtime – working with Microsoft accredited engineers is essential, as is having a strategic plan. Consider what services surround your exchange servers – backup, archiving, security gateways, monitoring – and move them first – even if you are implementing a staged migration. Once the services have been moved you can just concentrate on moving mailboxes.

Ask yourselves other questions during the planning phase - What will be you be doing around single sign-on?

What about mail flow and address rewriting?

How PSTG can help.

Our accredited engineers work with you to understand your requirements to we can design an email solution that is unique to you. You’ll benefit from our eco-system of 3rd party solutions that enhance security and the services that surround your email environment.

Our technical support team that will work with you to migrate and implement the solution and then provide on-going monitoring and support to make sure you’re up and running 24/7.

Want a quick chat to discuss some options? Just call Laura on 0203 907 9500


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