This comprehensive article explores the world of cloud computing, a term that might initially seem complex, yet underpins the everyday functions of common applications such as Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, and Google Drive. Through these platforms, we engage with cloud computing on a daily basis, storing our data virtually and accessing it from any device with the correct authentication.
By definition, cloud computing is the technique of storing, managing and processing data via a network of virtual servers housed on the internet. Traditionally, data is stored on a local server or physical device like a personal or work computer.
Cloud servers help open up memory and processing capability on local computers by running software, platforms, and databases remotely. Using passwords and other forms of authentication provided by cloud computing vendors, users may safely utilize cloud services.
Cloud computing is quickly gaining popularity with companies and organizations as a result of its ease, convenience and efficiency. According to a survey, 81 percent of all enterprises already have a multi-cloud strategy in place or in the works. As discussed more in our article on the importance of cloud computing, cloud solutions offer many advantages that are driving widespread adoption.
If you are a business owner or company executive, or individual considering migrating your systems and data to the cloud, here are fifteen reasons why you should.
Switching to cloud computing might seem like a hefty financial investment on the surface, but this is not the case. When you consider all the features it comes with, such as full-time cyber security and high speeds, cloud computing is a worthy investment. In addition, you do not have to pay for features you will not require. It is pay-as-you-go and payment-per-service system. This means that you will only be charged for the storage space your business needs at a given time, as well as specific services. If you need to scale up or down when it comes to bandwidth, cloud computing is flexible in that regard.
Consider the amount of money your business or start-up could save because you do not need to hire a whole IT team to handle your IT needs. Cloud computing offers a variety of services and expertise. Also, because your data, applications and software are stored in the cloud, you do not need to make considerable investments in hardware like computers and data centers.
For a more detailed cost comparison between cloud and on-premise solutions, check out our article on Cloud vs. On-premise Cost Comparison.
2. Data security
One major reason companies are hesitant to embrace cloud computing is the security of their data. Data breaches are a constant fear for businesses because they can have a significant impact on revenues, customer loyalty, and the company's reputation. No one would want to partner with a company whose security has been compromised because people value their privacy.
However, it can be argued that cloud computing provides more security for businesses than an in-house system while also being cost-effective. For starters, complete security is not guaranteed even when a company has a dedicated IT team because, unfortunately, breaches at times occur internally. Malicious and disgruntled employees may sell private data to competitors. In addition, IT teams have to deal with numerous IT needs of the company aside from security, so they might not carry out every single task efficiently.
With cloud computing, there is round-the-clock surveillance of your data. Cloud computing also offers protection through encryption, access control and authentication. Consequently, not just anyone can access your data and systems without the cloud tracking their activity.
Cloud computing providers also give you the option to limit access to specific data to particular employees. Employees have to prove with passwords or two-factor authentication that they have the security clearance to access certain information.
If this is not enough, you also can beef up your security with additional measures.
When it comes to flexibility, no local server can compare to cloud computing, and for several reasons. First, with cloud computing, you can execute tasks and make changes without your IT infrastructure being affected, not to mention without breaking your bank.
Because cloud computing covers almost all your IT needs, it gives your in-house team time to focus on other tasks, such as developing new features to give your business a competitive edge. They do not have to focus all their time and effort on monitoring your data, installing updates and fixing bugs.
Cloud computing gives you access to your data everywhere you go on any device, as long as you have an internet connection and a device like a smartphone, laptop or iPad. Cloud computing comes in handy for companies with employees spread out in different states, countries or continents. This adds to the flexibility feature of cloud computing because employees who work remotely can have access to company files, data and systems. If you are sick and cannot come to work, trying to catch up with work over the weekend, all this is possible. You are not restricted by working hours or the distance from your home to your workplace.
Cloud computing gives employees the ability to collaborate on different projects and documents virtually seamlessly. They can view and edit documents simultaneously on a cloud-based platform without any technical difficulties. For a company, this increases efficiency and reduces the time and resources needed to develop new products or services since many tasks can be completed in a short time, without a need for several arduous meetings and bureaucracy.
From minimizing disputes and confusion, cloud roles and permissions help with increased transparency and surveillance of who performed what and when. Cloud computing keeps track of every single activity and who executed it. This kind of order reduces instances of data breaches and inefficiency since top management can assess employees from the insights and data provided by the cloud.
6. Data recovery
In business, you have to prepare for every eventuality, and I do not mean just insurance. You have to think ahead and consider any instances that might lead to data loss, such as natural disasters, breaches, simple errors, theft and unprecedented system shutdowns.
Having your data only stored on hardware is extremely dangerous and reckless because anything can happen, and you will lose everything in a moment.
With cloud computing, you can have previous versions of your software securely uploaded on the cloud. In addition, with cloud computing, your data and software are stored and running on several different locations so that in the event of any interruptions, system failures, or attacks, traffic is seamlessly redirected to a secure site.
With such features, your clients will not even catch wind of system failures because their activity on sites, applications is uninterrupted. This ensures customer loyalty and protects your brand's position in the market.
Data loss can be particularly detrimental to the brand because data is power, and data is wealth. It could take you years and a tremendous amount of money to start building your data up to where it was before a disaster, and that is why data recovery protocols should be in place.
- What is Disaster Recovery Plan?
- Disaster Recovery Testing Best Practices
- Business Continuity Planning Checklist
7. Automatic software updates
New software upgrades are automatic on cloud-based applications and software. Therefore, there is no need for company-wide breaks because the system is being upgraded. However, employees are affected by these system upgrades; clients might also experience a period of inactivity because of an upgrade. These interruptions cost money because clients are unable to access goods and services. Additionally, outsourcing these system-wide checks and upgrades is costly.
8. Valuable insights
The fact is, we live in a data-driven era. Data is an invaluable asset for any business or brand. Data comes from the simplest actions taken by an individual, from the sites they open, bounce rates on a site, likes and comments on social platforms, items viewed and purchased. However, as much as you might take the necessary steps to collect data, you also need to know how to analyze, interpret it, and take actionable measures based on that data. Unfortunately, this is not a skill possessed by just about anyone. Therefore, you might have to outsource this part, which will cost money.
However, for a meticulous analysis of your data, several cloud-based storage technologies provide integrated cloud intelligence. With your data stored in the cloud, you can easily launch reporting systems and create reports to analyze findings from different types of data collected. As a result, you may enhance efficiency and make actionable plans to accomplish corporate goals based on these findings, such as designing new features, products, and services to boost customer satisfaction and company revenues.
As much as different companies have different IT needs, the same company can have different needs at other times. For example, when you are just starting and have a few clients, your bandwidth needs are not the same as those of a well-established business, so you should not have to pay fixed sums, as this is not feasible because you are just starting and trying to break even. Therefore, you need a provider that lets you pay the price designed for your needs. This is why cloud-based systems are an excellent option; you do not have to pay for storage or bandwidth that will lie dormant. Once your company takes off, you can quickly and seamlessly scale up according to your needs. Similarly, if business is slow, you can scale down to reduce expenses.
As a result, cloud computing is cost-efficient because you do not have to pay fixed amounts when your clients increase. When it comes to local servers, adjusting your bandwidth can be a lengthy, complex and expensive venture The cost efficiency and agility that cloud computing provides is the kind which helps businesses thrive.
10. Unlimited storage capacity
Essentially, the cloud has an infinite capacity to store your data, software and utilities. Therefore, you keep on buying space according to your storage needs. As a result, you do not have to worry about an information overload or a system collapsing because processing and storing too much data. However, the amount paid may differ according to performance and speed, how frequently you access this data, and other factors.
11. Easy management and control of company data
Because of the round-the-clock surveillance, cloud computing enables management to keep track of company activities and operations. Management is fully aware of who accessed what, worked on what and what is still pending. Additionally, it is easier to assign and monitor tasks because you limit and provide access to employees based on rank and roles. Cloud computing reduces instances of data breaches because if it is internal, it can be traced back to an individual or, at the very least, a specific group of employees. There is complete transparency and a clear demarcation of roles and responsibilities.
12. Competitive edge
Without a doubt, companies that adopt cloud computing have the upper hand compared to those that do not. Cloud computing ensures faster speeds, a quicker onboarding process, and regular and automatic updates that do not require system shutdowns and ensure seamless business operations. Furthermore, they have unlimited storage for several backups, guaranteeing data recovery in case of any unprecedented occurrences. The benefits of cloud computing far outweigh the cons, and any company incorporating it into its model will enjoy efficiency and reduced overhead costs, critical factors necessary for thriving in any industry.
13. Enhanced business value
Cloud computing guarantees faster speeds, lower costs and minimal system interruptions. These are perks that are not only enjoyed by clients but also the organization or company. With these advantages, a company has a higher chance of building a loyal customer base and establishing itself as a worthy contender in the industry it belongs to.
Because cloud computing handles the bulk if not all of a company’s IT needs, a company can refocus its energies on enhancing its service delivery and designing new and better features. They can use the cloud to revamp and redefine their marketing strategies and practices while increasing their agility. The cloud may aid in the launch of innovative marketing strategies and the delivery of digital consumer experiences. It also allows for analyses that are hard to achieve with conventional computer systems.
14. Environmental sustainability
Cloud computing is more environmentally friendly than the standard storage systems we are used to, like paper documents, company desktops, and data centers. Because your entire system is on the cloud, you reduce the trees being cut down to manufacture paper used to print documents and the outdated and spoilt computers you eventually throw out when they become obsolete.
In addition, because employees can work remotely, they do not have to drive to work and release toxic fumes produced by their vehicles. While these might seem like small changes, together, they go a long way in saving and replenishing the earth.
15. Enhanced Customer Experience
Cloud computing offers the ability to provide a superior customer experience. With cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) tools and other digital platforms, businesses can track customer interactions, preferences, and behaviors. This comprehensive understanding allows for personalized engagement, leading to higher customer satisfaction.
Moreover, cloud computing offers faster response times due to its high-speed capabilities and real-time data access, significantly improving customer service operations. Additionally, the deployment of AI-powered chatbots for customer support is facilitated on cloud platforms, offering 24/7 assistance and enhancing the overall customer experience.
This, combined with the capacity to easily scale resources during high demand periods, ensures a smooth, seamless customer experience, thus fostering stronger relationships and promoting customer loyalty.
From the above benefits, you can see why cloud computing is slowly becoming the standard for individuals and companies, organizations, and start-ups. Cloud computing is the future because your data is always secure and one click away. For a company just starting out, cloud computing could be the competitive edge that will boost your company's chances of taking off and thriving.
Are you looking for a cloud service vendor to get you started on your cloud computing journey? Please take a look at our directory for the most reputable managed cloud service providers.
FAQ about Cloud Computing Benefits
What is cloud computing?
Cloud computing is the technique of storing, managing, and processing data via a network of virtual servers housed on the internet. Traditionally, data is stored on a local server or physical device like a personal or work computer.
Why are businesses increasingly adopting cloud computing?
Cloud computing is gaining popularity due to its ease, convenience, and efficiency. It opens up memory and processing capability on local computers by running software, platforms, and databases remotely. This allows users to safely utilize cloud services with the proper authentication.
What are the cost benefits of switching to cloud computing?
Cloud computing allows businesses to only pay for the services and storage space they need at a given time. It is flexible, allowing for scaling up or down based on business needs. This can lead to significant cost savings over time, especially for start-ups or smaller businesses.
Is my data secure on the cloud?
Cloud computing providers generally offer robust security measures, including encryption, access control, and authentication. Round-the-clock surveillance of data is typically included, helping to mitigate the risk of data breaches.
What is the benefit of cloud computing in terms of flexibility?
With cloud computing, businesses can execute tasks and make changes without affecting their IT infrastructure. This allows in-house teams to focus on other tasks, such as developing new features to give the business a competitive edge.
How does cloud computing facilitate collaboration?
Cloud computing enables employees to collaborate virtually on different projects and documents seamlessly. They can view and edit documents simultaneously on a cloud-based platform, increasing efficiency and reducing time and resources needed to develop new products or services.
How does cloud computing help with scalability?
Cloud-based systems allow businesses to quickly and seamlessly scale up or down according to their needs. This is especially beneficial for businesses with fluctuating bandwidth needs.
Can cloud computing give my business a competitive edge?
Yes, companies that adopt cloud computing typically enjoy faster speeds, a quicker onboarding process, and regular and automatic updates that do not require system shutdowns, resulting in seamless business operations.
How does cloud computing contribute to environmental sustainability?
Cloud computing reduces the need for physical storage systems, resulting in less energy consumption and a lower carbon footprint. It also allows employees to work remotely, reducing the emissions associated with commuting.