Access to business class collaboration tools such as email, contacts and calendars used to cost an arm and a leg. First of all you needed to have a server domain structure in place, generally a couple of servers, then you would have to purchase Exchange Server for your collaboration services. These would all be housed and maintained on site, and if anything went down the whole site was offline.
Now, with cloud services the entry barrier: the cost of purchase, installation and setup of hardware and software is removed! The entry point for full business class collaboration tools is as simple as signing up to cloud services from your preferred provider.
With Google Apps for Business you can sign up as a one man band, or a small business with dozens or hundreds of staff. The setup process is straightforward and your business can be up and running in the time it takes to have your domain integrated with Google’s services.
For the small business this is a big win! We can work alongside corporates with a level playing field for collaboration, and it’s not just the communication staples of email, calendar and contacts, you can share and collaborate on documents too. For smaller businesses the ability to use these tools across multiple devices is an added bonus. Google Apps for Business even allows for device management from the admin panel.
If the perceived cost and complexity of getting business class collaboration is putting you off making the move, take a look at Google Apps for Business – the entry barriers have been broken and the TCO is more than affordable.