Paradigm Shift: What is the Zero-Footprint Movement?

NetgainCloud Computing, Financial IT, Healthcare IT, Performance & Availability, Predictable IT Costs

We’re nearing the end of 2017 and technology continues to evolve at a break-neck pace. Managing Partners, Practice Administrators, CEOs and CIOs are exhausted from trying to match their hardware investment to this rapid evolution. There’s a groundswell among business administrators who are directing their IT leadership to move everything to the cloud.

We’re seeing a complete industry-wide shift in both financial services and healthcare, in which firms and practices are shifting to this zero-footprint model by the end of 2018. So, don’t be surprised if you start hearing more about this move away from a rigid, capex model into a more flexible and scalable, cloud-based, opex model.

But, the path to a complete zero-footprint model is littered with questions and challenges.

  • How do you move everything off-site while still providing a great experience for your users?
  • What if you still have a significant amount of on-premises applications and hardware?
  • How can you provide remote and mobile staff with any-time, anywhere access to de-centralized data?

SaaS applications on the rise

Web-based applications have significantly matured over the last decade. There are web-based applications available for many of the applications that your organization uses every day. Whether it’s a web-based electronic health record application, accounting application or applications you use in your back-end office to keep the organization running, there is no shortage of software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications to help you confidently minimize capital outlay and improve your users’ workflows.

New titles are introduced weekly, as software developers look to solve the unique challenges of today’s firms and practices. If you haven’t looked at your application stack to see what titles are available via web-based delivery, you should start reviewing your SaaS application migration strategy.

On-premises applications continue

It may still be another five years (or longer!) before your inventory of locally installed applications are replaced with cloud-based applications. Until your existing applications are updated, you will need to provide a cloud environment that virtually hosts these applications and users’ desktops. And, it must be delivered in a way that provides an exceptional user experience.

Cloud adoptability

Industry leaders have decided that their organizations’ futures lie in the cloud. Now that the zero-footprint movement has gained critical mass, it’s time for everything to move to the cloud or risk being left behind.

Organizations that have already migrated to a cloud-based, zero-footprint model are maximizing the value of their migration by redirecting the capital that they would have previously invested on infrastructure and hardware into other areas of their business to accelerate their growth.

Pay-as-you-go, Pay-as-you-grow

Paying only for the precise IT resources your organization needs right now used to be a pipe-dream. But, with the maturity of the cloud-based service and application model, it’s now possible to pay only for the resources you consume, and not a penny more. This opex, subscription-based model makes budgeting for IT simple and extremely predictable. No more surprises or expensive hardware refresh cycles!

Desktop-as-a-service (DaaS)

So, how are firms handling all the on-premises applications, user data and shared files in a controlled environment that still delivers a fast user experience? It’s all packaged in managed, cloud-based, up-to-date Windows desktops. It is then delivered in the same, predictable and scalable model as SaaS applications. This popular as-a-service approach makes for a highly-performant, convenient and capital-efficient growth model that can easily scale as your organization grows.

How is your organization preparing for the zero-footprint movement?