In today’s business world, a significant portion of business communication use email as its media. Associated with email are other interpersonal communication applications such as calendars, contacts, and tasks. As business emails contain critical and important information, such mails should be properly managed with sophisticated messaging tools. Such tools provide almost instant and efficient access, so that these can be recalled at a moment’s notice. While email has become a critical component of business communication, it brings with it a plethora of new problems, ranging from storage limits, spam and virus filtering to access to old emails for regulatory compliance or eDiscovery requests. All of these must be properly addressed to avoid adverse consequences.
Exchange Server is the world’s most popular email and messaging solution. “Exchange” is a computer server that centrally stores a business’s email, files, task lists, and calendar and contact information. People in the organization can access all these through Microsoft Outlook or Outlook Web Access on any internet-enabled office PC, laptop, or mobile device. Exchange as a messaging tool increases business efficiency and productivity. Deployment of an Exchange Server in an organization entails high implementation and maintenance costs. This constraint puts off most companies except enterprise-level businesses with mission critical data, to benefit from its use. With the advent of Hosted Exchange this scenario has changed so that even the smallest of businesses can enjoy an enterprise-class service. Hosted Exchange is a solution in which the Exchange Server hardware and software are hosted as a service and made available to any business over the Internet. The solution is fully managed and maintained by a third-party hosted Exchange provider. The cost-effectiveness of a hosted Exchange can be ascribed to factors such as elimination of capital expenses of hardware and software costs, no investment in IT staff for monitoring and maintenance, guaranteed uptime for access to data 24 X 7 and redeployment of existing IT staff to more productive issues.
Perhaps the prime advantages of hosted Exchange are administrative simplicity and peace of mind. With hosted Exchange, all the messaging functionality can be availed of with none of the administrative burden.
Major features of a hosted Exchange are centrally stored data, mobile access for handhelds like BlackBerry, iPhone, or other mobile devices., shared Calendars, shared Task Lists, shared Contacts, Outlook Web Access for “Anywhere/Anytime” access to full Outlook mailbox from any web browser – at home or on move, server, network, and infrastructure security features, Software upgrades and security patches and support for virtual environments. It is no wonder that more and more businesses are opting for hosted Exchange.