Does Your Southern Alberta Business Need A Server?

Tired of shuffling files between computers on a USB memory  device? Or backing up QuickBooks to a CD? Or having multiple copies of  your important files on different computers? Maybe it is time to look at  your first real server.

But…Do we really need a server? What does a server do exactly? And  aren’t they expensive? These are all valid questions you may have  thought about as the owner of a small but growing business.

First things first, what is a Server?

Servers can do many different things for your business depending on  how they are configured. The typical server for small business may take  on roles such as file storage, backup, email, resource sharing, remote  access, and user security. Let’s investigate the different roles a  server may play in your business.

File Storage: Having all your files in one central  location is the biggest advantage to having a server. With all your  company’s files organized in a logical hierarchy you are better able  to find what you are looking for. This benefit grows exponentially as  the size of your office staff grows. A properly configured server will  also allow you to synchronize your files for working away from the  office.

Backup: Centralizing all your company’s important  data in one location makes proper backups possible. This alone is enough  of a reason to implement a server for your company data. Your  information can be backed up daily, with version. Another simplified  thing to do is backup your data to an online data storage company. It  is always prudent to have a copy of your data off-site.

Email: Having your own email server has many  benefits for the small business. Shared contacts and calendars make life  easier for employees trying to schedule meetings and appointments.  Imagine the time savings by having one central copy of all your clients  contact information, instead of each employee keeping their own copies.  Having your own email serve also gives you control over spam and virus  scanning, and gives you access to additional features such as web mail  and smart phone access.

Resource sharing: A server can act as a print server  to provide print services to all your computers. Instead of all  computers having attached printers, you can invest in a better quality  printer to be shared by everyone. The server will always be available,  so you won’t have a problem printing when an attached workstation is  shut down.

User Security: Protect your sensitive data by having  proper security measures in place. Your server can keep track of  exactly who should have access to what, and document what is done on the  network.

So do you need a server for your business? This question can be  answered easily once you understand exactly what a server does and what  the benefits would be to your business. Also, don’t forget to plan  for future growth. A growing company must think towards the future when  deciding to deploy a server. Just remember, your system might be okay for  today, but what about your requirements in six month or a year from now?