How to get the best out of Microsoft Azure
Moving to Azure makes a lot of sense, particularly as cloud-based services have become the go-to for many companies to support remote working during the COVID-19 crisis. The question is how do you migrate with confidence, and, once there, how do you keep using those services in a way that is controlled and cost-effective for your business.
If you are already using Microsoft Azure, or thinking of making the move, you could make life a lot easier for your IT, finance and management teams by using a Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider (CSP).
A managed service for Microsoft Azure will ensure best practice, cost efficiency, security and compliance, helping you to maximise the investment you have made.
We would like to introduce you to the benefits of consuming a managed service for Azure through a CSP like iomart.
Why use a managed service for Azure?
If you are using Azure you will know how easy it is to lose sight of who in your organisation is using it and for consumption to get out of hand. Choosing a managed service like the one we offer at iomart brings a number of benefits:
Baseline architecture – It’s easy to set up your Azure services and then just let them run. We review your architecture regularly to make sure that what you are using remains right and relevant for your business.
Cost management – Trying to keep track of spending in Azure can be a full-time job. Our Azure experts regularly review what you are consuming and work with you to identify ways in which you can be more cost efficient. When you contract through a CSP like iomart, you can put away your credit card. You simply get a monthly bill for your Azure and Microsoft 365 consumption, rather than pages of billed items.
Application performance – Our many years of experience helping customers migrate to the public cloud means we can help you get the best out of Azure. We monitor the performance of your applications, optimising them where necessary to ensure the speed and reliability of the service they provide to your end users.
Enhanced security – With a constantly changing threat landscape the security of public cloud platforms like Azure requires constant monitoring through multiple layers of the environment. Our security experts work with you to pro-actively protect your Azure environment.
Business continuity – Many Microsoft Azure environments rely on the in- built capability of the platform and have not yet implemented Disaster Recovery or business continuity services. With our managed service you can configure a DR solution seamlessly and cost-effectively.
iomart has been part of the Microsoft CSP programme for over five years, helping many of our customers simplify the management of their Azure cloud services.
What is a Microsoft CSP?
As a Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider iomart can provide greater value for organisations and businesses that use Azure. You have a direct relationship with us rather than with Microsoft, which means you get quicker answers to the technical, billing and licensing questions you need to ask, along with a straightforward monthly invoice.
We manage all your Microsoft services, taking care of licensing, renewals, software upgrades, billing and most importantly, provide round-the-clock expert technical support. This management wrap around your Microsoft services gives you a single point of reference to simplify both management and billing.
How Do I Choose a Microsoft CSP Partner?
The CSP you choose to partner with should be mature and reliable and have extensive technical expertise across Microsoft’s products and services. They should also be able to scale services for your organisation as it grows. Security should be a mainstay.
At iomart we are proactive about security across our own data centre infrastructure and for the services we provide. We have built our own managed security service using world-class technology. Our customers trust us because we have been securing and delivering scalable cloud and hosting solutions for over twenty years.
What are the benefits of using a Microsoft CSP?
Having one partner managing your Microsoft products and services enables you to get the maximum out of your investment. Here are some of the benefits:
- Easier to purchase Microsoft products and services
- Managed services wrap for all your Microsoft assets
- Security around all your Microsoft products and services
- Volume licensing control
- Predictable OPEX cost model
- Simplified, cost-effective monthly billing
- 24/7 technical support
Below are some of the frequently asked questions that we are asked when an organisation is considering contracting their Microsoft services through iomart as their CSP.
Will I retain control of our Microsoft services?
Yes, if needed you can still have full administrative control over your Azure subscription and Microsoft 365 tenancy.
Do I need to sign an agreement?
Yes, you sign a cloud service agreement with iomart which means that you are also agreeing to Microsoft’s CSP agreement.
If I am already using Microsoft Azure, can I migrate to a CSP?
Yes. We would conduct a thorough review of your Azure environment to understand if everything can be migrated and discuss options for items that cannot not be moved. iomart would plan the migration to ensure any downtime was avoided.
Can I move from another Microsoft CSP to iomart?
Yes. iomart works with you to make this as seamless as possible.
How will I be invoiced?
Once you have signed our cloud service agreement we would set up a commercial arrangement to provide you with monthly billing. iomart would then invoice you every month.
Can I leave the CSP programme?
Yes, you can leave at any time, as the CSP is a monthly subscription allowing you to change your services and licences.
What happens if I cannot meet my payments?
This is a situation we would hope to avoid, however iomart has the right to terminate your CSP agreement if you do not pay in a timely manner.