With more businesses outsourcing work to other countries and telecommuting on the rise, it is important to make sharing information with colleagues easier. A great way to share documents is to use a cloud-based server to allow others to look at and/or change documents for business projects. However, along with documents, some employees may need access to their email accounts, calendars, and other computer applications when away from the office. A company with hosted exchange can make it easy to have access to those apps.
What Is Hosted Exchange?
A hosted exchange means that a third-party hosting service provides space on a server for clients to store their data. A hosted exchange may also be called hosted Microsoft exchange because the service is for hosting Windows-based applications such as a mailbox account, Outlook email, and Outlook web access, among other services. By hosting these applications on a cloud-based server, employees can access their data no matter where they are at the time.
This allows employees to be more productive away from the office because they can access information on their company’s server they would otherwise not have access to unless they were using their work computer. As long as they have their passwords, they can access this data anywhere they are and on any device they happen to be using. For instance, if they are having coffee with a client and need to schedule another meeting with them, the employee can bring up their calendar via hosted exchange and check it.
Benefits of Hosted Exchanges
There are several benefits to using a cloud-based hosted exchange for your company besides the ability to access information away from the office.
One of the most important concerns for businesses of any size is securing its data so unauthorised personnel cannot access company or client information. Billions of dollars have been lost due to security breaches in the past few years in which hackers were able to infiltrate business and government computer systems and steal business financial information, as well as client personal information. When you use a hosted exchange, the company monitors your servers 24 hours a day to spot and prevent potential security breaches.
Along with monitoring servers for suspicious activity, security is also provided from cloud hosting services by encrypting data to make it more difficult to access and steal, and by housing the servers in a different physical location. Since many employees are accessing their data from mobile devices like laptops, smartphones, or tablets, hosting companies have taken steps to protect data by being able to remotely wipe data from a lost or stolen mobile device.
In addition, servers are protected physically from theft or damage due to natural disasters, fires, and other causes by being housed in another location, sometimes in another part of the world. This means if something does happen to your company’s computer systems or there is a flood that damages your files, your data will be safe and accessible, and you can get back up and running almost immediately after most problems.
Nearly Limitless Email
Most cloud-based hosting companies are able to offer large amounts of space for email inboxes when a company uses hosted exchange. Many companies offer up to 50 gigabytes of email inbox space, which allows employees to archive important emails, especially if they are required to retain the information by law. Some industries have regulations requiring them to retain certain information for a specified amount of time, such as the healthcare industry, and 50 GB of space will allow for critical information to be retained and accessed as needed.
Along with Microsoft email and Outlook, most hosting companies also allow for other email protocols to be hosted on the cloud so they can be accessed at any time on any device. Some of the additional protocols include HTTPS, POP3, and IMAP, as well as others.
Remote Access to Applications
Along with email access, employees can access and share information on their calendars or a colleague’s calendar to check when they are available for a conference call or to schedule a meeting with them. A team can also share a calendar so they know when their other team members have appointments, or they can access the team calendar to keep appraised of events, conference calls, or other scheduled meetings they should know about.
Contact information can also be accessed. If employees are out of the office and need to contact someone, they can simply pull up the application on the cloud-based server and call the contact. In addition, you can also assign tasks to your team via the cloud using task management applications. This allows you to notify your team of a change in their duties or assign them to projects without having to be in the office.
Saves Money and Time
By using a cloud-based hosted exchange service, your company will save money because the hosting company has the necessary equipment, infrastructure, and personnel to provide you with the web services your business needs. This prevents your business from having to spend thousands of pounds on servers and installation at your company’s offices. In addition, you don’t have to hire IT professionals to continuously monitor activity on the servers or troubleshoot issues with the servers if there is a problem with their operation.
By having remote access to information, your employees don’t have to waste the time of clients or vendors by calling or faxing for the documents or information they may need. They can simply access the cloud-based server, pull up their email or the documents in question, and have them faxed from their mobile device. This prevents frustration on the part of the client or vendor, as well as the employee.
Cloud-based services, like a hosted exchange, have many benefits for your company, including helping your employees to be more productive and saving your business money. Cloud-based hosted exchange also keeps your company’s information secure because it is monitored 24 hours a day, every day.