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Survival Strategies in Tough Times

Growing concerns about the business implications of the turbulent economic climate and intensifying credit crunch are driving companies and non-profit institutions of all sizes to thoroughly reevaluate their corporate priorities, capital expenditures, operating budgets and sourcing strategies.

In addition to the "Four High-Tech Steps SMBs Should Consider Now," here are two more technology trends companies and non-profit institutions of all sizes should seriously consider and capitalize on:
Software-as-a-Service (SaaS): Web-based, subscription-priced, 'on-demand' services are experiencing significant growth because they can be deployed easily and quickly without the risks and added costs associated with traditional, on-premise, 'legacy' software products. End-users and business executives alike are recognizing the business benefits of SaaS solutions which range from Google Apps and WebEx for collaboration to customer relationship management (CRM) solutions.

While these solutions are still far from perfect, they have proven to be a viable alternative to the headaches of dealing with legacy applications. IT/network professionals are also discovering a growing array of SaaS applications which can help them with their day-to-day management needs.
Cloud Computing: These are a wider array of web-based development tools and services that are enabling start-ups and enterprise software architects to leverage virtual data processing and development environments without the upfront capital expenditure and at a fraction of the ongoing cost of traditional data centers.

These cloud computing services are fulfilling some of the promise of the utility computing concept that was popularized at the start of this decade. While cloud computing services have experienced some outages, they are evolving quickly and will become more reliable over time.

The bottomline is that IT and business decision-makers have a growing array of technology alternatives with attractive pricing and packaging features at their disposal to help them contend with the serious challenges of today's economic environment.