Robert Eppele, CEO of GoToMyERP, writes part 2 of his "Is QuickBooks Hosting Dead" series with a look at some real world examples and how hosting saved countless hours and ultimately dollars.
Short Story 1:
About this time last year, we received an emergency support call and tickets from a client $14 million dollar company running a QuickBooks Enterprise and MISys Manufacturing environment using our fully managed hosting services. When we responded to the controller she was mad, angry and upset and told us, “We’ve been hit by a ransom virus.” For nearly a week the company suffered through rebuilding email and local files.
Short Story 2:
A small CPA firm in the middle of tax season called and asked us if we had a back up of the QuickBooks clients they serviced. “Of course we do. Why?” The CPA told us that their Lacerte Software along with nearly 9 years of historical data was lost when their only server was lost during a power outage.
The common ground for both our clients was that parts of their critical applications were properly cared for in a cloud-network environment that was designed well and fully managed.
So is hosting dead? Our perspective is that it has its place. And in our opinion, most organizations should consider a hosting strategy in part or completely to support your business infrastructure. Again, function has to lead everything a business does so what I am about to say is not an absolute and has to work well for your situation.
“Isn’t hosting expensive?”
For most companies it looks that way initially. If we were to use an average of 5.5 users (Intuit’s Licensed User Statistic) and most hosting providers charge about $60/Month Per User (Including Intuit Hosting Fee collected by Authorized Intuit Hosting Providers) then we should average $330 per month or $3960 a year. On average 1 new server for a small company may range from $2,400 to $3,500, uninstalled, no maintenance, no other networking components and no proper way to remotely deploy the applications. Additionally, a high-quality hosting provider will not only just install the products and take care of the mechanics but actually provide additional consulting service to support the products like QuickBooks, MISys, Sage or BillQuick. So consider that value should be included too.
“I have or just bought “a” server.”
A client who is running 5-6 users of QuickBooks and requires the flexibility to have their users remote will require more than just a server. To properly operate even a small remotely deployed solution requires 2-3 servers or server instances (for virtualized computers), proper backups and maintenance. It is possible to have all of that for about $330 a month with most hosting providers who provide 1 server. In a proper hosted network solution, a provider will dedicate no less than 2 or 3 server instances on your behalf. Any less your system may be clumped together with other companies’ systems and you’re probably better off being on your own. Anyone running a larger or more complex deployments of QuickBooks along with other systems like bMobile, Acctivate or Highjump really should consider housing their systems deployed with a QuickBooks hosting provider.
“I am worried abut security in the cloud.”
This is not an argument for having your critical applications onsite. Look, most micro and small business, even surprisingly large companies, are not able to achieve the same levels of security as most high-quality hosting providers. Why? It’s unlikely that 5 user environments even up to 50 are willing to employ and invest in devices, software and expertise needed to operate and secure their environment at a level they are “expecting.” Remember, to replicate the out-of-the-box security from a really good hosting provider would be impractical for a small company. But, this is where the scale of using these technology providers benefits you if you’re really worried about security. Otherwise, you run the continued risk of mismanaged environments that allow for security matters to waive their ugly head. Or worse yet, like our client who suffered from the ransom virus. This would have affect QuickBooks and other critical systems too.
As an authorized hosting partner for Intuit we get a lot of these arguments why it’s not practical to host. Hey, we get it. It’s not for everyone and honestly it has a lot to do with the characteristics of an organization, ownership and management. Like I said at the beginning of the article, function has to lead your decision and your comfort needs to be well rooted too. Consider hosting your QuickBooks or which ever system because it is the easiest and safest way to improve and secure your infrastructure when the time comes to make that decision.
GoToMyERP is an Authorized Hosting Partner for Intuit and has one of the highest customer service ratings in fully managed hosting services and most generous Affiliate Programs for Pro Advisors. Contact Information (877) 888 5525 or firstname.lastname@example.org