Cloud computing continues to be at the forefront of the technology industry, largely due to its undeniable ability to enhance existing IT infrastructure, future-proofing any organisation, of any size. The cloud is accessible to any business, whether big or small, no matter the industry or location, ensuring a seamless experience for all users – both in-house, and client side.
This all sounds amazing, right? But it’s also sounds somewhat like a vague promise, like so many newer technology trends do. So, what are the specific benefits of moving to the cloud, and how do they impact your business?
To help decipher the code of cloud-based solutions, Condeco asked several business leaders to report what they found most beneficial for their workplace and workforce, and why the cloud is working for them. Here are the results:
Reduced IT costs
One of the most obvious and achievable benefits of cloud computing is cost saving. Indeed, many business leaders are motivated to move their IT needs to the cloud simply to save money. Gone are the days when organisations required physical IT infrastructure, hardware and expensive equipment (that often took up precious office space) just to manage their day-to-day technology needs.
Not only can the cloud offer a drastic reduction in time, money and space spent on managing servers, but the pricing options for cloud-based storage and applications are often far more competitive and adaptable, offering further cost savings for those on tight budgets. Scalability is more affordable via the cloud, too – more on that subject later!
Increased IT security
Many IT professionals will tell you that the cloud is the most secure place for your sensitive documents, vulnerable assets and business-critical applications. IT security is traditionally complex, and often expensive. Long-established approaches to IT management have typically created short-sightedness or even human error, and therefore, weaker areas that aren’t as secure as possible have become the norm for many.
The ease and low cost of cloud computing ensures that employees can be more proactive in their approach to security, with the added ability of managing security risks more quickly and efficiently than with physical servers or equipment.
More efficient collaboration
Collaboration is a true buzzword for the modern workplace, and for good reason – we’re all chasing that often-elusive approach of employees truly working together, meshing ideas and backgrounds and knowledge to create the most impressive, competitive and resonating work. With the cloud, collaboration becomes far easier – shared applications and files are available at the click of a button, workflows can enable several employees to work on the same documents at the same time in completely different locations, and video meetings and instant chats can improve employee relations.
Not only is collaboration increased within your office, but collaboration between locations receives a boost, too (even if they’re in completely different time zones).
The cloud is instantaneous; employees can access their work and responsibilities from anywhere, on any device, at any time. The traditional restraints of the workplace can be removed with the use of the cloud, empowering employees to work in the way that is best for them – this may mean a flurry of video calls at 7.am, or booking their desk space for the day while on the commute to work. It’s all easily achievable with the cloud, and can make for a happier and more productive workforce.
We’ve already learnt that the cloud provides ample opportunity and significant cost savings, and it’s also fair to say that it’s far simpler to scale up existing IT solutions when they’re hosted via the cloud. Not having to invest in separate equipment that then needs to be sourced, installed and implemented is a huge positive – cloud services mean that when scaling up, whether permanently or just for a temporary period, simply skip straight to the implementation stage. Simplicity is one of the main keys to success, after all!
Boost in business continuity
Continuity should be important to any business, and it’s closer in reach with the help of the cloud. While a business plan for any disruption should always be in place, the cloud can aid and guide continuity, and can also establish a safeguard for employees’ daily responsibilities.
Access to automatic updates
Updates to IT systems can be a monumental pain and cause widespread disruption within your business if not carefully planned. The cloud removes this kind of turmoil, allowing IT professionals to simply enable automatic updates, just like we might on our smartphones or tablets. Automatic updates can end up being a lifesaver for those who rely heavily on their IT infrastructure being as secure, up-to-date and efficient as possible – and isn’t that most of us?
Fewer operational issues
Cloud-based services are often more reliable, and throw up fewer unexpected issues. This is partly due to the ease of using said services – the cloud is particularly user-friendly in comparison to some of its traditional counterparts, and therefore any concerns are more easily ironed out. The cloud itself is also a safeguard against operational issues, providing painless disaster recovery abilities in situations such as power outages.
Reduced carbon footprint
Finally, we’re all becoming increasingly aware of how important an eco-friendly approach to business is. Cloud-based solutions are an easy win in decreasing the carbon footprint of any business, therefore lessening the environmental impact that said business’s operations have on the environment. It’s a simple, often straightforward ‘swap’ that has a multitude of benefits, and while helping to save the planet may not be high on your list given the more immediate effects that cloud computing can have on your business, ultimately, this may well be the outcome that we all end up being most grateful for.