As your business grows, you need to move from a simple peer-to-peer computer network to a more structured network based on a centralised server system. This offers a number of key benefits to a growing business:
- File consolidation: Instead of having important files and documents stored on various computers throughout your business, you can store all of them in one easy to access, central location. This helps you to keep track of all of your important files and leads to more collaboration, as employees can access and modify files held on the server, eliminating the infuriating habit of having different versions of documents on different computers.
- File permissions: Each user on the network can be assigned certain access rights (the ability to see, open or edit files and folders). This allows for granular control over sensitive data, and ensures that private information is only available to those who have the authority.
- Backups: Instead of backing up the files on each PC in your organisation, you can automatically backup all files on the one server. This saves you the worry over forgotten backups, and gives you a solid foundation for disaster recovery because all of your data is synchronised with the server, for restoration to each PC at any time. This means if your PC ever goes kaput, you’re back up and running with all of your data on a new one right away.
- Flexibility: Any employee can use their login and password details and sign into any computer on the network. They will instantly have all of their desktop icons and menus, etc., available, just as if they were on their usual PC. So if one PC crashes or an employee needs to access their files in another part of the organisation, they can call up all of their menus and files on any networked computer.
- Security: A network server greatly increases your company’s security level. You can give specific employees access to particular files (excluding access to others), prevent certain external downloads and control access to particular IP addresses. Preventing unauthorised users access to sensitive material is an important aspect of enterprise security, which is easily executed with a structured network.
- Antivirus and spam: The easiest and most secure strategy to reduce hackers, malicious viruses and spam emails is to do so at both the PC and the server level. Depending on the type of firewall you employ, you can restrict access to your system from incoming emails, drop suspicious emails and downloads from the network and prevent untold damage to your business.
- Reliability: Unlike a desktop PC, servers are equipped with multiple redundancies. This means that if the power supply fails, the server does not stop working. With multiple storage systems and hard drives, this also means that you can replace faulty components without diminishing the operation of the server or interrupting your employee’s work.
- Customisation: With your own server you can install and customise company required software and even customise the server itself to better serve your needs.
Undoubtedly, a structured network utilising your own server will, in the long run, save you both time and money. In fact, it can be quite inexpensive to run and even if it wasn’t, the benefits far outweigh the costs in security, flexibility and peace of mind.
For more information on IT solutions for your business, call us on 07 3333 2122 or get a free online quote.