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It’s natural to want to put off upgrading your office technology, but the truth is that the cloud is coming for us all, sooner or later.

One major driver for cloud adoption is cost reduction. Yet, for the uninitiated, it can be difficult to make sense of whether your provider is really giving you value for money.

And, whilst individually priced cloud services may be cheap, many companies fall into the trap of using multiple solutions across their businesses without really understanding what they’ve signed up to or conducting a proper audit. This is especially common in large enterprises where it can be hard to keep track of each department. This can lead to unexpected bills – not ideal when the cloud is supposed to reduce costs.

So, how do you wrestle back control of costs?

1. Don’t skip the subscription model T&Cs

Subscription models are the future – everyone from your everyday consumer to large organisations are signed up to a subscription service in an effort to keep the costs of buying individual items and services down.

However, as licencing is frequently done on a per-user or usage basis, having an accurate estimate of the number of employees who will need to use the service is critical to having a clear picture of what the monthly costs will likely be. Companies can underestimate the demand for a service, leading to higher costs than expected.

Those in charge of cloud services should also remain vigilant in deleting old and/ or unwanted users from the system. This small change can be a quick win in reducing your cloud costs.

2. Delete unused or old files and items

We have grown accustomed to saving everything, so it’s likely your business has numerous files that you don’t need. As you’re paying for storage space, it’s a good idea to reduce or deprecate your data on a regular basis. Perhaps every few months you should encourage employees to spend some time reviewing their documents and deleting anything they think won’t be useful for future.

3. Manage usage times

Turn your cloud system off when you are not using it. If a cloud licence is based on a usage model, applications that are left up and running indefinitely by unknowing employees can cause costs to accumulate. A company can save up to 70% on their cloud costs by switching their cloud services off when not in use.

4. Consider automation options

Use cloud automation to install, configure, and manage your computing services in the most efficient way possible. Numerous areas can be automated, such as backup and configurations, which can drastically reduce the amount of human involvement required. This won’t directly reduce costs but will indirectly reduce them by substantially reducing manual errors while also allowing your IT team to focus on more strategic business operations.

5. Regularly reviewing your offering

This may seem obvious, but you aren’t tied to a cloud vendor. Just like people don’t shop around for better credit card deals or energy suppliers, businesses also ignore the benefits of looking for other providers when contracts are finished. The added time it takes to look for a new provider could reap huge rewards in the future so it’s certainly worth putting the time in.

If you are happy with the vendor, you currently use, review the cloud offering you are paying for as most cloud companies offer a variety of cloud options and pricings depending on parameters like area, data centre zone, and pricing plan, the same cloud resource might have a wide range of price points.

Cloud technology can bring a vast array of benefits to your business, from large amounts of storage for small prices to easy deployment strategies. Keep these tips in mind and your business will be in a good place to make the most of the cloud, within your budget.