Cloud computing offers Small and Medium Enterprises (SME's) global access to their data and software but there is a growing trend for UK businesses to procure their Cloud services from a company based locally.
"SME's are increasingly telling us that they want to meet with a locally based Cloud provider. They like to meet and talk to a real person whom they can relate to and they can trust to sort out their individual company issues," said Gary David Smith - co-founder of Prism IT Solutions, the provider of Cloud and managed services to UK SME's.
"Cloud providers like Prism can adapt products and services offered to their local market. Working in the Cloud means that we can integrate software from multiple suppliers to develop bespoke solutions for individual businesses," he said.
"Businesses have many local requirements that a remote provider wouldn't necessarily be aware of like download speed or the need to also support an existing IT structure. These are conundrums to be sorted out by a local provider."
Cloud computing is essentially harnessing the Internet to manage, store, and process data instead of hosting it on individual machines or company servers.
The increase in download speeds, especially within UK cities, allows businesses to process data far quicker than they used to and quicker in the Cloud than with office based servers.
"SME's should ensure that they are correctly advised by a provider that is fully aware of their situation and requirements," said Richard Alexander, MD of Prism Solutions.
"We have come across many firms based in small towns or rural areas who are struggling to get the connectivity required to access Cloud services. Unfortunately, some of them seem to have figured this out only after they have attempted to make the transition into virtual computing.
"They are then faced with the increased costs of leased lines or bonded Digital Subscriber Lines which effectively eradicate any savings they thought they would make.
"You would think that any SME embarking on the journey into the Cloud would have been better advised but unfortunately, many providers seem more fixated on the 'land grab' opportunity of new business and not their individual client's needs," he said.