This a guest post is brought to you by SkyNet IT. SkyNet IT formed a business dedicated to providing personalized service with expertise personnel. They are leaders in remote desktop hosting, VoIP telephone services, exchange hosted e-mail, and SharePoint Team Collaboration. Their goal is to take away the fear and anxiety of small business technology needs. This article focuses on the benefits for remote computing and remote desktop hosting for small businesses.
Remote Access Computing Reduces On-Site Computer Equipment Needs
No Maintenance or Acquisition Costs
Every computer system that a company needs costs the company money when it is purchased and when software is installed on it. When a business has more than one location, each location may require a computer system to replicate the needs of other locations. With a remote “hosted” computer system, each location can share the capabilities of one computer.
The benefits that can be realized are as follows:
No more need to worry about computer failures
Hosted systems are redundant, meaning they are backed up in case something goes wrong
No more hardware maintenance costs
Hardware upgrades are typically included in the cost of the hosted service
Running out of disk space is no longer your problem to worry about
No need to spend time maintaining multiple computers
No need to travel to multiple locations
Simplifies Software Upgrades and Support
Many software packages require frequent updates. Every time there is an update, the user must access each computer system and perform the update. In some cases, this requires traveling to the various locations and executing the update. With a centralized remote computer system, this can be done one time in one place and all locations receive the upgrade immediately. Benefits are:
Reduced down time
Which equates to more productive time
Reduced possibility of errors
Centralizes Data Storage
Rather than having to worry about data storage at each location that has a computer system, Remote Computing centralizes it in one location. A reputable Remote Computer “hosting” company will have their computer systems located in a highly secure data center. This provides the added advantage of physical security. Any business location is vulnerable to break-in and theft and the resulting loss of data from that event. With remote computing, these risks are significantly reduced.
Enables Effective Telecommuting
Work from anywhere as though at the office
Remote Computing does not just apply to “server” types of computing systems. It also applies to the user level computing needs. With remote access computing, a user is able to access a “server grade” computer system and do all their work from wherever they are. There is no need to provide full computing systems for users, any internet capable computer or laptop is able to access a remote computer.
Unlike some of the computer remote control type applications like “Log Me In” or “Go to My PC,” a true remote access computer uses a very low latency internet protocol that allows the user to work at real-time.
Additional things to consider for effective telecommuting include:
Call routing should be available to route calls to any telephone at any time
The user should have a reliable internet connection of at least 1.5Mbps (DSL) with 5Mbps or higher recommended for VoIP telephone services.
Psychologically, people work better when they have an area dedicated to work that is as isolated from the home environment if possible.
Save on Commuting Costs
The relatively low cost of remote access computing can easily be compensated for in the reduced costs of commuting. Typical “per user” costs of remote access computing are less expensive than 1 tank of fuel in even the most economical of cars. For what a user would pay for 10 gallons of gasoline at today’s prices, they can pay for a month’s worth of remote computing. That is likely even better than commuting in some today’s most efficient hybrids.
Save on Office Space
If any of your office workers can be effective permanent telecommuters, obviously the need for office space is reduced. Even if there is occasional need for office use, shared office space becomes very practical. The users of the shared space may not be able personalize their space, but they certainly will enjoy the flexibility of their commuting time.
The most wasted time is the time we spend driving. Through the safe use of hands-free devices, we can sometimes make calls while driving, but what if you need to take notes during that call? Game over… Time spent driving can be used as productive time for the telecommuter. For most people, that equates to a minimum of 1 hour per day and for others much more than that.
Anyone who lives in area prone to serious air pollution will appreciate that getting as many cars off the road is a benefit to the environment. Telecommuting is a significant contribution to removing cars from the road. Look around you during your commute. How many of those cars have 1 person in them? Most of them. How many of those people really need to go to an office? It is likely that at least half or more of traditional office employees really do not need an office. Perhaps telecommuting could be the single largest contributor to improving environmental quality.
Remote computing offers many benefits in cost and time savings. There are also significant benefits to the environment. Companies should take a close look at remote computing to solve the increasing cost and capacity constraints they face.