If you’re heading to Optometry’s Meeting later this week to shop for an optical practice management and EHR solution, we want to help you prepare! You might have heard all about cloud-computing systems and you might even be interested in purchasing one for your practice. But before you head to the show, are you aware of the differences between a cloud-hosted and cloud-based solution? They are both in the cloud and it can be hard to spot the difference between the two. Don’t be overwhelmed by the salesperson in the booth or fall for their marketing fluff! We’ll breakdown the differences between a cloud-hosted and cloud-based system so you’ll be sure to make the right decision for your practice.
Optical Practice Management: Marketing Fluff vs. What It Should Be
Marketing Fluff: Access your software anywhere through a VPN login.
What it should be: Access from anywhere through a browser.
A huge selling point for cloud solutions is the fact that you can access it from anywhere. There should be no string attached to how you access it. Cloud–based solutions are accessed through an internet browser, so you should be able to use it on any device that has internet connection. Accessing it from anywhere should simply mean getting to your software from a computer you already have either at home or your practice, or on the go with a tablet –whether it’s an iPad or Android. Software that requires you to do anything other than typing in a URL, such as purchasing a VPN login, is not a true cloud-based solution.
Marketing Fluff: We’re a cloud solution that can be installed on any device!
What it should be: No installation required! You can access the software anywhere with any device.
Cloud-hosted software can be installed on any device, but true cloud-based solutions should not require any installation. You should be able to simply access it through a browser (see above) and it will be accessible through any device. Installations also mean additional expenses when you have to purchase compatible hardware. If a software suddenly offers a cloud solution with the option of an installed version, it’s most likely a cloud-hosted solution.
Marketing Fluff: Sign up for a short term contract, for as short as one year.
What it should be: We charge a monthly subscription fee, no commitment to annual contracts!
Don’t get locked into a long term contract with your vendor, only to regret it when you’re looking to switch to another system! Cloud-based systems usually charges a month-to-month fee so you get predictable pricing with no hidden fees. Maintenance fees, updates, and administrative costs should all be covered.
Marketing Fluff: We’re in the cloud / cloud-hosted.
What it should be: We’re a true-cloud based solution, built on a SaaS model.
Generally, when looking at brochures and websites, you want to scan it through for a few keywords. Vague marketing language that simply says “cloud solution” should be further inspected for the signs mentioned above. Anything other than SaaS, such as ASP, should also be further inspected.
Misleading marketing information can be tricky. But when you’re equipped with the facts, it can be easier to see through the marketing fluff! If you’ll be at Optometry’s Meeting, feel free to stop by the VisionWeb booth #759, and we’d be happy to explain the differences. Also, we’ll be having demos of Uprise, our true cloud-based practice management and EHR solution (no tricks here.) Or you can also request demos online!