As summer ends I gaze at the August sky, and I don’t see any clouds. I’m thinking about our tribal partners and recent questions they’ve been asking about the “cloud” and particularly Microsoft’s Office 365 and Azure platforms. Adoption of these solutions in Indian Country has been slower than the rest of the country. This is understandable with far fewer broadband capabilities on native lands. It takes solid broadband Internet infrastructure to rely on cloud services since the Internet is the roadway or connection point to “the cloud”.
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The cloud is another reason that getting the fundamental “utility” of high-speed broadband infrastructure distributed on your Reservation is critical….so many opportunities open up that are in the “cloud”.
Hands down, tribal entities that have solid Internet infrastructure should be transitioning to Microsoft 365 and other cloud services and here are my top 6 reasons why:
- You will reduce large and unpredictable capital expenditures for equipment that has a limited lifespan
- You will reduce the operating expenses to support this hardware and software
- You will pay-as-you-go for a predictable monthly recurring charge per user or use
- You will always have the latest version of software without additional upgrade costs
- You will have access to 24×7 support from your supplier
- Your data will be secure with 99.9999% availability as long as your Internet works
The resistance I usually hear about converting to a cloud subscription model is regarding security. Statistically, Microsoft has more resources and requirements to provide a secure platform that any tribe can keep up with. Next month, I will write to you about cybersecurity and hope to put some of these concerns aside.
This editorial was written for and published in the Tribal Business Journal, September 2018 issue.