Businesses are too quick to jump to cloud solutions for their storage needs these days. It’s important that your business doesn’t overlook the need to strengthen physical storage solutions. Here’s what you need to consider.
Your own server room
Many startups who need a lot of data kept safe will look to outsource servers. And this is a pretty good idea. (It can certainly be better than generic cloud solutions.) But setting up your own server room really is the best way to go about it. Not that setting up a server room is a particularly easy task!
There’s a lot to consider when setting this all up. You have to consider what kind of rack system to use. You have to get strong air conditioning systems to ensure they don’t overheat. All those wires are hardly a walk in the park to deal with, either! You even have to think about the tremendous amount of noise a bunch of servers can produce. Still, the result can be well worth the cost and effort.
External hard drives
External hard drives come in all shapes and sizes. The most famous, perhaps, takes the form of the USB drive, or USB “pen”. These things are absolutely essential for businesses. Having a good supply of these around makes it much easier to get large amounts of data across to each other. (After all, doing that via email or cloud solutions can take up too much bandwidth!) There are also the bigger solutions that can store terabytes of information.
Of course, some people are actually a bit skeptical about external hard drives. They think they’re too flimsy, or too easily stolen. And I’ve certainly known USB drive theft to be a complaint in many offices. (Often by cheeky employees!) But if you keep them numbered and keep track of them, it makes it harder for them to “go missing”.
So all of the above is good for abstract data. That is, the sort of things you can actually store on hard drives and servers. But what about physical records? No matter how paperless an office aims to be, you’re still going to accumulate a fair amount of these sorts of documents. Contracts, important letters, images, payment information, etc. The answer may seem obvious, of course: filing cabinets.
But those things do tend to take up an annoying amount of room. They can also be difficult to organize. My advice would be to transfer as many as you can to computer records. Make sure you’ve got a good workflow for the system, too. And if you need something physical gotten rid of, make sure you use a strong office shredder.
The right computers
So what about the equipment that all of your employees use? A lot of business owners tend to get pretty underwhelming computers for their employees. This can be understandable from a cost-cutting perspective. But it can harm productivity in the long run.
You want these computers to have a good data storage capacity. At a minimum, they should have around 800GB-1TB of available data storage. When you consider how many things the average employee has to store on their computer, this figure makes perfect sense!