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Cloud project management software - OpenProject

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What is cloud computing?

Cloud computing is making storage, servers, databases, networking or software available remotely in the cloud or virtual space. This allows the users to access all data via the internet, and consequently to work remotely.

Cloud computing is also referred to as on-demand delivery of IT resources because the organization does not own physical data centers or servers. The organization can make use of computing power, storage, databases and applications as needed.

More than 92% of organizations are using cloud services demonstrating the importance of cloud computing.

Software as a service (SaaS)

There are different types of cloud computing with different levels of services, ranked from low to high:

  • Infrastructure as a service (IaaS): In this case the backend IT infrastructure that usually an IT department takes care of, is provided, e.g. network, hardware or data storage.

  • Platform as a service (PaaS): The cloud provider hosts the hardware and operating systems to run and use applications. Everything from server, network, storage, operating system, middleware, database is taken care of so that the users can focus on running, building, testing, deploying, maintaining, updating their applications.

  • Software as a service (SaaS): The software provider runs and manages the application software and makes it available in the cloud. The user can access the software via the web-browser, a desktop client or an API. It is usually a subscription model but can also be a pay-as-you-go model. Any software can be offered as SaaS, especially relevant is cloud project management software to connect remote teams.

Software hosting options

If you want to use an application from a software provider, you hopefully have the option to choose between cloud and on-premises hosting.

As described above, software can be hosted in the cloud and is easily accessible from the web-browser. This option gives the user the opportunity to focus on the business, and let the experts do the hosting. Cloud project management software lets you run the projects and the secure hosting is taken care of by the provider.

The other option is on-premises software. It is an in-house hosted solution where the private data centers are run and maintained by the organization itself, behind its own firewall.

Advantages of cloud software

SaaS offers many advantages.

  • No IT expertise needed to manage and maintain hardware, data centers etc.
  • Flexibility: you can increase the number of users as needed and within seconds, the SaaS provider takes care of corresponding performance and storage capacities.
  • Automatic upgrades: the software provider does upgrades and they get released automatically to the version that the user is currently working with.
  • Cost savings: Lower IT costs due to not having to run on-premises infrastructure. You only pay for what you need or consume and don’t have fixed costs.
  • Increased agility thanks to freeing up the in-house IT team from the management of an application, corresponding infrastructure and support.
  • High data security: you leave the hosting to an expert and over the past couple of years, security of cloud service providers reached an extraordinarily high level because of demand for it. Several best practices to maintain cloud security have been established to offer security-sensitive organizations adequate cover.

Security in the cloud

The biggest concern with a software hosted in the cloud is data security. When you are working with sensitive data you want it to be extra carefully protected, e.g. when using a cloud project management software. And that is why it may feel safer to have the data on your own local server.

However, all concerns that one might have with cloud software also hold true for on-premises software because the same technology and set up is behind it. E.g. you might be concerned that the server becomes victim of a natural disaster or power outage. This can happen to a cloud computing provider but also to the proprietary server of a corporate. And it can e.g. be prevented by continuous data backups in separate locations.

In order to create a high level security on-premises infrastructure, you need a knowledgeable, experienced, well-trained, security-conscious team as well as the appropriate means for hardware. Then, an on-premises solution provides you with full data control.

But if you cannot provide the mentioned IT team for the on-premises infrastructure, the cloud is the safer solution because it then has the superior security measures. Cloud software providers’ employees are experienced security experts, working with security threats all the time. On top, regulations and best practices add to the cloud’s security.

Data privacy in the cloud

When choosing a SaaS provider, you need to check their data privacy policy to make sure how they are treating your critical data. Find out :

  • Where data is stored?
  • Who has access to the data?
  • Who has access to the data in critical cases (e.g. US authorities?)?
  • What other third parties are involved to deliver the service and have access to your data (including cookies)?

Make data privacy policy an important factor when choosing your SaaS provider.

Who is cloud software best suited for?

SaaS is best suited for organizations that do not have the capacity to self-host. Also, organizations that want the flexibility to scale up or down within a few seconds should go with cloud software. And of course organizations that do not want to incur high fixed costs for infrastructure and the respective IT team benefit from a cloud solution.

Cloud project management with OpenProject

OpenProject offers its users the Enterprise cloud edition which comes with professional support and additional Enterprise add-ons and security features. Thereby, our commitment to information security and data privacy with many security measures and policies guarantee secure cloud hosting and protection of our users’ data.

OpenProject Enterprise cloud is securely hosted in the EU, or on request in Germany. We do not track our users with cookies and only where necessary are using sub-processors to perform tasks that we cannot do in-house. This all to protect your data.

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