Cloud Control: Choosing the Right Model for Print Infrastructure

07-Mar-2019 5:32 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

by Ondřej Krajíček, Chief Technology Strategist, Y Soft

Cloud computing exploded onto the technology scene and has impacted almost every aspect of an organization. The continued rise of the cloud is driven by the benefits realized in efficiency, productivity, cost control and workforce mobility.

Choosing a cloud-based solution for your print management and document capture needs can remove some administrative tasks and related costs, saving time and freeing up IT resources to focus on more important strategic elements. Cloud based solutions enable organizations, such as small businesses, to increase user productivity and ramp up document security even without having their own IT resources. Cloud solutions also add value by eliminating or vastly reducing server maintenance costs, application and print servers alike.

The right model for your print infrastructure?

As organizations continue to digitally transform, there is an increased demand on IT capacity and a hunger for new capabilities. Should your organization continue to deploy print services on-premise, in a private datacenter or a private cloud? The answer, of course, depends on the organization’s specific needs, the organization’s overall cloud strategy, IT capacity and other factors.

Leading print management and document capture solutions can typically be deployed on-premise, partially on-premise/partially in a private cloud or completely in a private cloud. To be clear, by private cloud, we mean a dedicated set of IaaS resources hosted by a cloud provider such as AWS or Microsoft Azure.

Not all print management and document capture solutions can deploy in these three ways easily and cost effectively, so investigating how the print services solution is designed can affect your options. For the most flexibility, choose a solution that is designed to be able to scale for your growth needs and can easily move from on-premise to a combination of on-premise/private cloud or can be offered entirely in a private cloud. Bear in mind, that your needs and strategy always evolve, and investing in a solution that can naturally transform from one model to another, without significant migration costs and duplication of effort, can provide significant savings in the future too.

The model you choose for your print environment is essential in ensuring you have the right level of control and security to protect your systems and data while balancing costs, flexibility and manageability. Organizations are typically concerned with three areas when thinking about where print services are managed: security, IT burden and data/bandwidth costs. The table below outlines where these concerns most often rank for each deployment model.

On-Premise/Datacenter

Partial On-Premise/Partial Hosted Private Cloud

Hosted Private Cloud

Security
Higher as print/scan jobs and job meta data are behind the firewall

Security
High as print/scan jobs can remain behind the firewall; only the job meta data goes to the private cloud for reporting purposes

Security
Lower as some companies may be concerned that print/scan  jobs are processed in the cloud. Job meta data stays in the cloud for reporting purposes

IT Burden
Higher as the company is responsible for entire print infrastructure

IT Burden

Lower as company’s IT is only responsible for on-premise part of infrastructure

IT Burden

Lowest as company’s IT has little print infrastructure burden

Data/Bandwidth Costs
Lower as data transfer is local

Data/Bandwidth Costs
Higher as the company pays data transfer for meta data traffic

Data/Bandwidth Costs
Highest as the company pays for job and meta data transfer costs. Latency may be an issue

Hosting your print management and document capture solution in the cloud, regardless of the model you choose, is not a pinnacle of progress. Besides costs, privacy, security and availability, needs and concerns may lead you to IoT edge-based print management and document capture solutions, providing coverage for the organization’s user base where cloud availability/connectivity is a concern and yet having servers on-premise is a pain point.

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