Cloud based computing is the hotly tipped buzzword of 2014. Evolutionary technology appears to be the current standard, and cloud based computing is no different. We are sure that you have heard the term bandied around in offices, tech forums (and of course, blog articles similar to this one). So, if you want to learn more about a possibly confusing subject, then you have come to the right place.
Are You Ready?
So, are you ready to tackle the big wide world of cloud computing? With so many services available, it can be tricky to know where to start and whether you actually need it. Take a look below at the services that cloud computing provides. Once you see what is on offer you will no longer be surprised as to why so many companies are utilising cloud technology.
The cloud is, essentially, the internet. The cloud realistically means everything that is stored within the internet. It is commonly used by tech nerds and businesses alike. But how is cloud computing utilised within the business arena?
Whether you have your own empire, or work for someone else, then you are highly likely to be using email as your main method of communication. Business emails are sometimes operated within its own server, but if it is not, then it likely that is handled in the cloud. Services such as Gmail, as well as paid for services, from companies like Lexis Nexis (contact us for more information) are cloud based services. The cloud is not just a mythical object in the sky; it is a valuable and reliable business tool.
Backup and File Sharing:
Many companies share and keep files within their own computer systems, which is not without its risks. Back up files, as well as shared files, usually contain highly sensitive information that is shared on a shared drive. Shared drives usually have restricted access, which makes them a mid-range risk. Did you know that back-up files and shared files can be stored in the cloud? This allows you, and your employees or employers, to access this information from anywhere in the world. Your work is at your finger tips, regardless of geography or time. This means that you can access your work from anywhere within the world that has an internet connection.
Customer Relationship Management:
Customer Relationship Management Software stores your client details and allows you to track your contact with them. Setting up as a CRM system is, in short, expensive, time consuming and a general pain in the backside. This system was by in large, utilised by big corporations who had the time and resource CRM systems, now it is utilised by the average SME and small business, due to its ease of use, accessibility and cost-efficiency. All thanks to the cloud. Anything the big dogs can do, you can do better. The system does not need loading, installing and maintaining, the cloud does that on your behalf.
The purchasing and installation of a network server is a phenomenal way of creating a flexible working environment. However, the costs associated with this are hideously expensive. So, consider the cloud based solution. You rent and access the space via the internet. It is managed by another company, such as Lexis Nexis which is prevalently used within the world of Law, and you pay your ‘rent’ for this space accordingly. It is a brilliant, cost effective solution for the smaller business owner.
Our love affair with Microsoft Office seems to be waning. This is due to the expense of purchasing one off piece of software that quickly dates. Our beloved Microsoft packages are rapidly becoming less used within the office. Google Docs is the king, and it is easy to see why. This online document creator allows you to create documents in the same as you would with Microsoft Office, but allows you to collaborate and share files, via the cloud, in a much more efficient way. Plus, it is free. You can access the documents from anywhere in the world, due to the power of the cloud.
How to Cash in on a Cloud:
In short, it seems that the most viable solution in terms of saving time and is to move your business to the cloud. After all, the sky is the limit. If you want to improve flexibility then it makes reasonable sense to move to a cloud based solution. Of course, if someone else employs you, it may not entirely be practical to change their business needs. However, if you are running the show, then you seriously need to consider investing in cloud based software. If you do not, you are likely to be left behind, and your competitors will reign supreme.
Of course, this will require some planning. You need to ensure that you can move to the cloud with minimum fuss. You will need to figure out how to get there efficiently, without losing your data. Now, this may be sound troublesome, but by purchasing cloud software from a vendor, they will provide all the necessary information to ensure that you do not lose time, money or your all important information.
Let’s be honest, your average CEO is a not a tech expert. Even your tech experts only have a limited amount of knowledge. They may be able to engineer parts of the move for you, but it is worth considering the expert opinion of your vendor to ensure that this process is running smoothly. Do not be deterred by cloud computing. At its very core, cloud computing is enabling companies to access their computer system and infrastructure using the marvel of the internet. This means that they have an entirely global reach. Can you say the same about your company?
The marvel and the constant, fluid evolution of technology are truly a wonder. Cloud computing is changing businesses, globally. If you want to be a part of the digital economy, then now is the time to reach for the sky and invest in cloud software.