Is Dropbox Business really worth it?

For most people, Dropbox was the original cloud storage provider. With its 2007 release, Dropbox predated Apple’s iCloud by four years, Google’s Cloud Storage by three years, and Microsoft’s OneDrive (named SkyDrive back then) by two months. And it was more than just a new and exciting web service — Dropbox was free.

Well, not all of its services are free, obviously. In addition to free “Basic” accounts, Dropbox offers three low-cost plans. And with the technology landscape the way it is, the two gigabytes of storage and minimal security features afforded to Basic accounts surely won’t suffice for businesses of any size. After nearly ten years, Dropbox’s Business-level plans are still one of the best cloud storage options on the market.

Storage

Companies need more storage capacity than the Basic plan has to offer, and Dropbox’s Business plan provides all the storage you need. That’s not a vague marketing ploy, mind you. Organisations subscribed to the Business tier quite literally get unlimited SSL-encrypted cloud storage.

By contrast, the cheaper Pro plan offers one terabyte of cloud storage, which is far from adequate for the average SME in the UK. If you think that capacity is justifiable, consider that the Pro tier retains a paltry 30-day limit on file recovery and version history. When you need to review a document revision from the beginning of this quarter, there had better be a localised backup; otherwise, you’re out of luck.

Protection

The security of your data goes far beyond just file history, and the Pro plan falls even further behind the Business plan in this regard. Both tiers may be able to wipe devices remotely and create time-sensitive/password-protected links for document sharing, but the more equipped Business plan gets half a dozen service features no company should go without.

For starters, Dropbox’s second tier comes with HIPAA compliance guarantees — a non-negotiable if you’re storing data originating from the US. Additionally, Business subscribers can set granular permissions, system alerts for questionable behaviour, and device controls. Depending on what type of data is being saved in the cloud, these settings could save your organisation from failing a compliance audit.

Administration

Setting and monitoring data permissions is key to maintaining a secure and reliable storage solution. To prove its commitment to these principles, Dropbox has included nearly everything from the more expensive Enterprise tier in the Business plan. From user activity logs to file event tracking, administrators can track every single action and development concerning their data.

These settings, permissions, team folders, and sync management can all be accessed from an administrative dashboard that is only available to Business-tier users, and establishes enough control over your data to achieve regulatory compliance and data security.

Collaboration

Google, another one of our preferred vendors, has done a superb job of integrating collaboration tools into their cloud storage platform. Not one to be left behind, Dropbox has created its own cloud productivity tools to help teams work on documents simultaneously, regardless of their location.

As we’ve written in a previous post, Dropbox’s Paper is an excellent collaboration tool. With a Business account you can move beyond simple cloud storage to create teams, projects, and goals that get more out of your data than just a safe place to rest.

Or, if you’re already invested in Office 365, sticking with Microsoft’s collaboration tools won’t be a problem. Office 365 documents stored in Dropbox can be edited and resaved without ever leaving the Dropbox platform.

Since its original launch ten years ago, Dropbox has added countless new features. Although the majority of those features intend to make cloud storage easier to manage, the complicated web of regulations and security standards necessary for most companies to stay in business means keeping it all straight is nigh unto a full-time position.

For ironclad security and administration with little more than occasional reviews and updates from a cloud technology technician, you need Damson Cloud. Send us a message today to learn more about cloud migrations.