Most businesses have data that needs to be stored in an easily accessible location. For decades, on-site storage was the gold standard; a network drive mapped to every machine or FTP credentials for every employee and client to log into a self-hosted server.
Today, a better alternative is going with a cloud FTP solution.
Modern Problems. Modern Solutions.
Times have changed, both for people connecting and retrieving files from servers and for the IT folks running those servers. Clients expect software to be easy to use, with features that go above and beyond what’s possible with out-of-the-box FTP storage.
Why Opt for a Cloud FTP Solution?
Cloud FTP is the modern version of an in-house solution. Gone are the days of maintaining and updating a physical server just so your business can transfer and store data.
While there are still servers involved with a cloud solution, they are hosted and managed by a team of experts. All of your data is easily accessible by those you authorize and provide access credentials to.
Whether you are uploading large files from your desktop at the office or downloading a single document on your tablet from a remote location. The cloud storage concept provides the freedom and flexibility to work when and where you need to.
Opting for a cloud FTP solution offers additional direct benefits to clients and IT staff.
Direct Benefits to Clients
We all want to incorporate services into our business that improve workflow, don’t break the bank, and optimize the client experience.
Using traditional on-site storage requires people to have access to the storage server. In the self-hosted world, you would need to contact the IT department to add a temporary account for a consultant you’re working with, which will also need to be removed once the work is done.
With modern solutions, account administrators can go online and add users so that consultants and others can access or upload files immediately. There are options for secure file transfer that allow you to send or receive files from clients without creating a new user every time. Sharing a file online is much simpler. In some cases as simple as — click, copy a link, and you’re done.
Once you’ve uploaded a file into the shared storage for Lacy in Engineering to review, you can either repeatedly ask her if she’s seen the file until she starts screening your calls or take advantage of modern cloud service features. In this case, you would save time using a feature that automatically notifies you (or anyone you chose) when the files have been accessed.
FTP & Web-Based
Finally, on the client-side of the coin, not all clients are as tech-savvy as the IT staff who sets things up. FTP clients are a tried-and-true method of transferring files. But, the lay-person may not be able to utilize niche software and still be happy at the end of the day.
Most hosted cloud FTP solutions also include a web-based interface. A good solution provides an intuitive interface, usable by both technical and non-technical folks. Cloud solutions allow you to have more functionality than FTP or SFTP would allow standalone. For example, the sharing and notifications are all done in the web interface. Thus, you are extending what FTP can do on its own.
Clients can also access the online interface anywhere. Are they working from home due to a pandemic? They can still access their files. On vacation at the beach? Their files are there, just waiting for them.
Direct Benefits to IT Staff
Upgrading to a cloud-based FTP platform doesn’t just benefit clients; it also makes the lives of your IT personnel better. When you have an on-site FTP server, you have to pay for all the associated costs. Power costs, storage costs, backup costs, and personnel costs. If your business doesn’t have a server room already to house hardware, you can add cooling and monitoring costs as well. All while maintaining necessary server and data security measures.
Having your SFTP server in the cloud means the files are offsite. All those costs are handled by the third-party who you’re paying to store the files.
Uptime is another element improved by going with a hosted FTP provider. The IT employee doesn’t need to get awoken at 3:00 am when John from accounting can’t access his files.
With some cloud FTP solutions, your IT employee can customizing options that further benefit you. They can set up custom branding, so the web interface looks like it belongs to their company. They can set up unlimited users (and even create users en masse with the import users function.) File shares can be embedded right in your website without having to build them.
While we’re on the topic of building things, most cloud providers will have an API for your developers to write code against — let’s see FTP do that. They can do almost anything via code and the API, which can save a ton of time and effort.
What Are You Waiting For?
Ready to replace your on-site server with a cloud FTP solution? Try ExaVault today and copy all your existing FTP files & folder structure to get the most benefits with the least cost. It’s worth a test drive.