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Critical Features of a Service Level Agreement – ERP Hosting


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As cloud computing continues to see rapid adoption, business are turning to cloud hosting as a first-class method for deploying business systems. But Service Level Agreements can drastically impact return on investment in the cloud.

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Consumers have grown accustomed to using the cloud in the form of personal banking, email and all kinds of file storage from photos to music,  but businesses face a bit more of a challenge transitioning to the cloud.  In the last few years cloud computing has become a competitive requirement for businesses in all industries, so in order to reduce the risk of a failed cloud migration, it is important to know the most critical features of a service level agreement.

Businesses that have moved or will move their systems to the cloud, especially those with strict compliance controls, stand to gain many advantages. However not all providers provide the same level of service, nor do they all spell it out in their SLAs. In order to see a healthy return on your  cloud investment, be sure your provider’s SLA clearly spells out its policies and procedures concerning these top features to consider in a service level agreement:

Data Confidentiality

Whether you have to comply with Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) as a publicly traded company or comply with tight restrictions around HIPAA rules as a healthcare organization, your data must remain under high standards of confidentiality and your SLA should spell out confidentiality policies and protections when you move your systems to the cloud.

Force Majeure Events

No matter where you do business, natural disasters can occur at any time.  When your business data is in the cloud, knowing who is liable in the event of a disaster is critical, as is knowing how your company is safeguarded against such an event.

Scheduled Downtime and Notification Requirements

All systems need maintenance and backup, but no need to worry. Your cloud provider maintains the system for you.  However scheduled downtime cannot conflict with your business and you need an agreement that includes downtime notification policies that are within your businesses requirements.

Responsibility and Reimbursement for SLA Non-Compliance

Nothing is perfect, at least not where IT is concerned. However, should your provider be unable to meet an up-time guarantee, it is good to know that their guarantee is backed by financial reimbursement to your organization.

Support Severity Levels and Guaranteed Response Times

If you are struggling to complete a task or the system isn’t performing the way you think it should, you need solutions to the problem fast.  Make sure your software as a service provider includes support responsibilities and response time guarantees to satisfy your business needs.

Backup and Restore Routines (Recovery Point Objective and Recovery Time Objective)

The cloud is able to deliver backup and restore procedures that an on-premises system managed by in-house IT generally cannot compete with.  So in order to gain the full benefit of moving to the cloud, be sure you have a clear understanding of your provider’s backup and restore routines.

Data Ownership Policies

Today’s business market is driven by data.  You need to know that your provider’s data ownership policies do not overstep your company’s policies. And that goes for more than just while you are with the provider.  Be sure that data ownership policies after termination of service also meet your company standards.

Data Encryption and How it is Monitored

Data encryption keeps your data safe as it moves through cyberspace.  When are dealing with customer data, client data and confidential business data in the cloud, you need to know that your provider’s standards meet your company’s security requirements.

Annual Increases, Notifications and Increase Limitations

One of the major advantages of cloud hosting over licensing on-premises solutions is the ability to avoid unexpected costs and fees associated with updates, maintenance and service packs.  With cloud, businesses should make a predictable cost structure a high priority.  Hidden costs and unexpected price increases from a hosting provider are unacceptable.

At RoseASP our customers and partners are our top priority, and we are dedicating to building strong relationships and with unparalleled service to earn their trust.  As the 2014 Microsoft Dynamics SMB Partner of the year delivering Dynamics ERP in the cloud, RoseASP works side-by-side with customers to provide a comprehensive 99.5-percent Service Level Agreement that covers all of the above featuress of an SLA and more.   Our goal is to offer our customers an SLA that will give them the peace of mind that RoseASP’s hosting services deliver the highest standards of availability, security and compliance support.

by RoseASP

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