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Exploring Your Options for Microsoft Azure Support

There are several options for Microsoft Azure support available for you to choose from, but it’s a choice many businesses still find challenging.

If you’re running your critical applications and business processes in the cloud, you simply cannot afford any down-time, dips in performance, or security issues. So, if you don’t have sufficient Azure support in place, you’re leaving yourself open to serious risk.

But how do you assess the options and make the right decision for your business’s cloud infrastructure? That’s exactly what we’ll explore in this article.


Option 1 – DIY

The first option is to maintain and support your cloud in-house, through your existing IT team.

Saving on the cost of a partner may seem like a great incentive at first, but you’ll soon find this creates more problems than expected.

The main issue here is the amount of time and money you’ll need to invest just to reach the most basic level of support.

The drain on internal resources you’ll face with full-time in-house cloud management is often unsustainable for smaller and medium-sized businesses as well.

Taking on the burden of Azure support internally also comes with the highest level of risk in some ways, with a long list of potential challenges involved.

With technology as complex as the cloud, this is a situation we’d advise against putting your business into.


Option 2 – Microsoft

Microsoft does offer some Azure support for its customers.

Primarily, this is delivered in the form of online resources like forums, wikis, documentation, and impersonal contact with a busy help desk.

The Azure support plans are organised into four tiers:

  • Basic
  • Developer
  • Standard
  • Professional Direct

Of course, Microsoft is a huge global organisation with hundreds of thousands of customers using its cloud services. With that in mind, you shouldn’t expect to receive any personalised hands-on support.

In most cases, you’ll receive only a minimal level of support to fall back on, which also means you’re accepting a high level of risk.

We’d recommend a more attentive and cost-effective approach to cloud support, especially for most small and medium-sized businesses.


Option 3 – Partners and Consultants

This is the most common option, taken by the majority of businesses. You may even already have an Azure support partner in place, as Microsoft does encourage the use of technology partners within its cloud ecosystem.

Partners come in all shapes and sizes, offering a variety of services. Through its partner programme, Microsoft pairs you with partners at the appropriate level for the size of your business or cloud investment.

  • Small specialist partners or consultants
  • Medium-sized partners
  • Large-scale partners for enterprise

This is a good option, but it’s important to understand that each partner is limited by its own resources, workload, and technical capabilities.

It’s often more cost-effective and reliable than working directly with Microsoft, but your partner will only be able to do so much for you while juggling many other clients.

While we’d advise that working with a partner is a safer choice than relying directly on your cloud provider, it’s worth doing some more digging to find an even better approach.


Option 4 – A New Level of Cloud Support

As the cloud is so vast and complex, your business should ideally have equally sophisticated technology in place to remove the risk and uncertainty of an ever-changing IT infrastructure.

If you’re running your critical applications and business processes in the cloud, you need a support system that will guarantee:

  • Reliability
  • Consistency
  • Accuracy
  • Predictability
  • Efficiency
  • Scalability

The best way to achieve this with full confidence is to leverage automated technology designed specifically to support the cloud. This is where our CloudOps cloud management software comes in, automated cloud monitoring using technology not people.


Next Steps

When it comes to the cloud, it’s vital that you can ensure your business has access to round-the-clock monitoring, maintenance, support, and much more.

To learn how to evaluate your options for Azure support, their pros and cons, and how to know which choice is right for your business, read our in-depth article here.