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You want to keep your data safe and maintain easy access to it, so what is the best option for you? When it comes to storing your data, there are several options. You can use a cloud-based infrastructure (SaaS) or use a server physically based in your office. We've weighed up the options, comparing the two so that you can make the best decision for yourself and your company.
What is SaaS?
SaaS stands for Software as a Service, a cloud-based data retention model. Your data is stored on a remote server and can be accessed anywhere with an internet connection. SaaS is also known as on-demand software and web-based/web-hosted software. It is a convenient option for companies that don't want to invest in their on-site infrastructure.
Software as a service stores your data on the cloud, rather than physically in your office.
Benefits of SaaS
Easy access to data
SaaS is online, which keeps it quick and easy to access anywhere and by anyone with access. You can access your data from anywhere globally with an internet connection. It is convenient for companies with employees who work remotely or travel often and need access to data without being physically in the office.
- Increased collaboration
SaaS platforms make it easy for team members to collaborate on projects. Multiple users can access and edit files in real-time, making it easy to stay on the same page.
- Automatic updates
With SaaS, you don't have to worry about manually updating your software. The provider takes care of updates and security patches for you.
SaaS gives you easy access to data from anywhere across the world.
- Secure data
Your data is stored off-site, preventing it from physical threats like fires and floods. It is also more secure online as it's part of a monitored network.
- Less maintenance
You don't need to worry about maintaining or upgrading your own infrastructure. The provider takes care of all that for you.
- Subscription model
It relies on a subscription model, meaning that you are not tied to it and can renew as you wish. If you stop paying, you will no longer be able to access the content.
- No installation
As it is all online, SaaS does not require physical installation; this is helpful for companies who need access to their data quickly and reliably. Physical installation can be a long process which uses up valuable working time. Additionally, it requires no physical server hardware as it is all stored internally.
- Fast start-up times
SaaS systems are available to users as soon as they sign up, benefitting you if you need to get your data stored away quickly. The fast start-up times are imperative in saving you precious time that you can use for other, more important jobs.
The benefit of this model is that it allows for a more consistent income stream. People are less likely to cancel their subscriptions than they are to stop buying individual products.
It also means that the company can plan its content production in advance, as it knows how much money it will have coming in each month.
SaaS is generally quicker than on-site, it has quicker installation and start-up time.
Drawbacks of SaaS
- Reliance on internet connection
Because SaaS is cloud-based, you need a reliable internet connection to access your data. This can be a problem for companies with employees in remote locations or areas with spotty internet.
- Security risks
As your data is stored off-site, it is at a higher risk of being hacked. While providers have security measures in place, there is always the potential for data breaches.
- Sharing risks
When you share data on a SaaS platform, you also share the risk of accessing or leaking data without your knowledge or consent.
- Loss of control
When you use SaaS, you rely on the provider to keep your data safe and secure. You don't have the same level of control as you would if you stored it on-site.
What is an On-site Server?
With an on-site server, data is physically stored in your office and can only be accessed from there. Your company owns and maintains the hardware, software, and licenses required to run the server.
An on-site server stores your data physically in the office.
Benefits of an On-site Server
With an on-site server, you are entirely in control of your data and who has access to it. Control is important for companies that handle sensitive data or are subject to regulations.
As on-premises systems are not connected to the internet, they are less vulnerable to cyber attacks. This is a major advantage for companies who are concerned about their data security.
You can customise a server to meet your specific needs. This benefits companies that have specific requirements for their data storage.
As the data is stored on-site, you don't need an internet connection to access it which helps employees in remote locations or with lousy internet connection.
Having your data based on-site gives you more control over it.
Drawbacks of On-site Servers
The disadvantages of on-premises systems are that they require a significant upfront investment and are more trouble to maintain. Additionally, they are not as scalable as cloud-based solutions and can be less reliable.
- Upfront investment
An on-premises infrastructure requires a significant upfront investment. You need to purchase the hardware, software, and licenses required to run the server. Additionally, you need to have someone who is able to maintain it.
On-site systems are more challenging to maintain than cloud-based solutions as you are responsible for all the updates and upgrades. Additionally, if something goes wrong, you need to have someone who is able to fix it. The main downside of using a server is that you are responsible for maintaining and upgrading it, which can be a costly and time-consuming process.
Cloud-based solutions are more scalable than on-premises systems. This is because you can readily expand them to meet the needs of your company. Additionally, they can be quickly scaled-down if you no longer need the extra capacity.
On-site systems can be less reliable than cloud-based solutions. This is because they are more likely to experience downtime due to power outages or other problems. If something goes wrong, it can take longer to fix.
You should weigh up your options when choosing between SaaS and an on-site server as they both have different benefits and drawbacks.
When deciding whether to use a SaaS solution or an on-site server, you need to consider your specific needs. If you require a high level of control and security, then an on-site server may be more fitting. However, if you are concerned about upfront costs and maintenance, then a SaaS solution may be better.