Small and medium-sized businesses have little room for maneuver when it comes to investment. Precisely for this reason, every step that involves an expense is weighed and evaluated in every aspect before being carried out. We know the fears that underlie such reasoning, and for this reason we have decided to dedicate an article precisely to the advantages that SOD services can offer to small and medium-sized enterprises. The adoption of cloud services for small businesses is an important step that requires some study.
Services available in the cloud
Cloud computing means, in practice, that it is not necessary to store your data. The data are stored and accessible online. The cloud is a highly secure physical location – called the Datacenter – located outside the corporate headquarters, which hosts many servers on the network that serve all users. By taking advantage of the support of a provider such as SOD, it is possible to relocate hardware and software resources in a datacenter and take advantage of the benefits that derive from it.
Cloud solutions for small businesses
Cloud computing naturally has different implications for small businesses than individuals or large companies. This is due to the fact that the user’s needs vary considerably. Both as a type of infrastructure required and as a specific service.
In fact, various main cloud computing options are available to meet various needs: infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), software as a service (SaaS) and backup as a service (BaaS).
If you think of cloud service models as a pyramid, the IaaS is at the base, because it allows the existence of remote infrastructures. PaaS is the next or intermediate level, which allows users to create infrastructure-based applications. SaaS and BaaS are at the top level providing end users with complete and immediately functional products and services.
Cloud solutions for small businesses are typically SaaS and BaaS solutions.
Common examples of SaaS cloud solutions for small businesses
SaaS-type online solutions include professional versions of apps also used by private individuals, such as Hootsuite, Shopify, Mailchimp, G suite and many others. But of course, specific cloud solutions for small and medium-sized businesses go beyond these familiar examples, and help increase productivity or facilitate marketing and sales.
Other rather important solutions for small and medium-sized enterprises are cloud backup and online storage. This is because, regardless of their size, companies today must manage an ever larger amount of data, and they must also do it securely.
In terms of security, it is also good to specify that a backup is not simply a synchronized folder. In fact, it often happens that online storage services are misunderstood and considered a backup method.
Professional tip: to protect your data you should have backup functions that allow you to restore everything you need to pick up where you left off before a data loss occurs.
Our advice is always to contact professionals not only for the purchase, but also for advice. In fact, the available solutions are manifold and offer functionality that may not be necessary. This is where a managed service provider (MSP) comes in, such as Secure Online Desktop. We can help you in choosing and setting up the ideal infrastructure for your specific case.
Why choose us
Small businesses are often challenged to understand and manage the complexity of IT systems, with the risk of finding themselves stuck because they are out of their knowledge. An MSP can help, thanks to the experience gained in the field. But it’s better if the company is local.
In fact, if it is true that small businesses can easily access many cloud solutions, adoption is not always easy. Being able to turn to professionals who are based in their own territory offers that additional level of tranquility for those who deal with local professionals. The initial setup, the specific choice of functionality and the initial size of the service, are all variables that are easily misrepresented by non-professionals.
An overview of the key solutions
The services we offer give greater value to small businesses. Not only because they are customized solutions, but also because we have clear what their needs will be in the future, thanks to our experience. We can therefore advise in advance how to move when the company starts to grow.
By contacting us, the customer will be able to concretely plan the growth of his company and infrastructure. Starting from the immediately necessary solutions, up to the planning of the specific ones based on the expected growth and possible unexpected events.
Secure Online Desktop offers a Videoconferencing platform (cloud conference) that does not require any installation of dedicated software on the computer. The only requirements to be met are Adobe Flash support and an internet connection.
Video call features include real-time sharing of audio, video, presentations, screen sharing. But not only, also collaboration tools among the participants such as: the blackboard, the shared notes, the surveys and the breakout rooms. It is also possible to record sessions for later playback.
Videoconferencing platform – Introduction to Cloud Web Conference
SOD – Cloud Web Conference is HTML5-based web software offered as a service (SaaS). Unlike many commercial video conferencing platforms that require software installation, Cloud Web Conference works in a normal browser. Just connect through a link to participate in the video call. The service provides high quality audio, video and screen sharing. This is possible using the browser’s built-in support for Web Real-Time Communication (WebRTC) libraries.
Secure Online Desktop’s Web Cloud Conference has a mobile first design, like many modern web applications. This means that its interface has been designed with mobile devices in mind. As for desktop use, there is no app to download or install, because the application runs inside the browser.
Functionality for learning and collaboration
The features offered by the Cloud Web Conference platform are suitable both for use in education and in professional collaboration.
The communication provides for a moderator, who has greater control over the functionality, and for participants who have limited possibilities. The moderator acts as host of the video call, can silence the participants, assign them to separate classrooms, share polls and interrupt the entire conference. Participants can also actively intervene only if the moderator allows it through the appropriate functions.
Public and private chat
Within SOD – Cloud Conference it is always possible to communicate through a chat. This can be public, and therefore visible to all participants, or private, therefore visible only to some of them.
Audio and webcam sharing
Those attending the meeting can decide whether to do it with the microphone on or off. In any case, you can activate and deactivate it later.
The moderator has the option to limit the participants’ audio interactions. This prevents audio from being shared with others if not needed. If the moderator does not prevent it with the appropriate function, participants can still intervene by enabling their own microphone.
It is possible to participate in the videoconference with your webcam: In this case you can eliminate distractions by closing parts of the interface that are not necessary, for example the public chat or the shared whiteboard.
Videoconferencing platform – Multi-user shared whiteboard
The blackboard is always available to the moderator. In addition to the use of various tools for drawing and managing images on the blackboard, it is possible to share it with the participants. These can intervene using it in turn, selecting different colors to distinguish their intervention.
Share presentations, videos and screens
The moderator can upload a presentation file to the videoconference platform. The software will show the presentation on the screen, without the inconvenience of having to download the file to all participants. It is however possible for the moderator to give the possibility to download the presentation file.
Similarly, it is possible to show participants a YouTube video through a link. The video is shown via the moderator screen, so as not to commit additional bandwidth to the participants.
Finally, the moderator can choose whether to show the participants their screen. It is possible to show the whole screen or only the window of an application already open.
It is also possible to create separate rooms and assign participants to them. These are used for collaboration in groups within the same video call. The moderator can create the rooms, assign the participants to them, or leave them free to choose independently. He can also listen to what’s going on in every single room, or actively participate like the others.
Videoconferencing platform – A solution suitable for everyone
The Cloud Web Conference system offers fundamental functions for a teacher to involve his students in learning. Through the same characteristics, collaboration between colleagues is possible and, indeed, facilitated by such a complete videoconference platform.
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