Email is considered a mission-critical system in almost all organizations that employ email and to host emails on-premise or in a cloud solution is perennial debate. There is no correct answer or set formula to opt either of the solution. Organizations need to access their business needs and infrastructure before taking a decision.The advantages and disadvantages of both solutions are subject to organizational policies and the way emails being used in the system. In many organizations, even though cloud email solution offers great advantage over on-premise email services, lack of a particular feature which is used by few persons in organization makes it difficult for IT manager to switchover completely to cloud email solution. Also at times, company policy or legal compliance requires that email data of certain key users to be hosted locally on-premise. This also prohibits IT manager to switch completely to cloud email solution and get huge cost advantage.
Hybrid solution Hybrid solution combines best of both on-premise as well as cloud mailing solution. You can host few users on on-premise using ‘Microsoft Exchange’ or ‘lotus notes’ and rest all of the users on Rediffmail Pro platform. Organizations can optimize the cost and at the same time do not compromise on data security policies by opting hybrid email solution. Typically in an organization, top executives would require email solution with advanced features like access to emails, contacts and calendar on mobile devices while other users would just need a basic email facility.
Benefits of hybrid solutiona.
a. Cost effective On-premise solution for entire organization requires huge investment in terms of licensing, infrastructure cost, maintenance, IT personnel, ancillary services such as anti-virus, anti-spam etc. By keeping most of the users on hosted email solution one can ensure that mailing infrastructure is cost-effective and resource efficient.
b. Pay for what you use In on-premise email solution, many feature and services are bundled together. Only few power users use these advanced features. Most of users require only the basic email functionality. By configuring on-promise for all the users on domain, IT manager ends up in paying for the features or services which are not used by most of the users. In such cases, hybrid solution is best alternative. IT manager can configure only power users who require advanced functionality on on-premise solution while most of the users can be hosted on cloud mailing solution.
c. Ancillary services On-premises systems could be used for the primary email system, but a cloud-based email continuity/disaster recovery system could be used to maintain availability during outages of the primary system. Also cloud email service can used for spam/virus filtering and archiving before the mails are forwarded to on premise mailing servers.
d. Phased migration The organizations which have on-premise email solution would have already invested in email infrastructure, and its criticality makes them shy away from rocking the boat. Most organizations has ‘play safe’ approach where “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” attitude takes precedence especially when a disruption to email can carry heavy consequences. In such cases, hybrid solution offers a great value where IT administrator can migrate to cloud mailing solution in a phased approach. This helps to ensure that the disruptions are minimal and the transition is smooth.