Businesses of all sizes, locations and industries are turning to cloud services. The cloud is a great way to run a business, since it offers many advantages and only a few disadvantages.
Before we dive in the benefits a company can achieve by adopting cloud infrastructure, let’s take a quick a look at what exactly cloud computing is, and how can companies migrate to the cloud.
What is cloud computing?
Cloud computing is a term used to describe the use of hardware and software delivered through a network (usually the Internet). The term comes from the use of cloud shaped symbol that represents a rather complex infrastructure that enables the work of software, hardware, computation and remote services.
Simply put, cloud computing is computing based on the internet. In the past, people would run applications or programs from software downloaded to a physical computer or server in their building. Cloud computing allows to access the same kinds of applications through the internet.
Cloud computing is based on the premise that the main computing takes place on a machine, often remote, that is not the one currently being used by a business. Data collected during this process is stored and processed by remote servers (also called cloud servers). This means the device accessing the cloud doesn't need to work as hard.
By hosting software, platforms, and databases remotely, the cloud servers free up the memory and computing power of individual computers. And users can securely access cloud services using credentials received from the cloud hosting provider.
Here's a list of key benefits a business can expect to achieve when adopting cloud infrastructure.
1. Efficiency / cost reduction
By using cloud infrastructure, you don't have to spend huge amounts of money on purchasing and maintaing equipment, which drastically reduces your fixed costs. You don’t have to invest in hardware, facilities or building out a large data center to grow your business. You do not even need large IT teams to handle your cloud data center operations, as you can enjoy the expertise of your cloud provider’s staff.
2. Data security
One of the major concerns of every business, regardless of size and industry, is the security of its data. Data breaches and other cybercrimes can devastate a company's reputation and revenue, customer loyalty and brand positioning.
Cloud computing offers many advanced security features that guarantee that data is securely stored and handled. Cloud storage providers implement baseline protections for their platforms and the data they process, such as authentication, access control, and encryption. From there, most enterprises supplement these protections with added security measures of their own to support cloud data protection and tighten access to sensitive information in the cloud.
Different businesses have different IT needs. Cloud based solutions are ideal for businesses with growing or fluctuating bandwidth demands. If your business demands increase, you can easily increase your cloud capacity without having to invest in physical infrastructure. This level of agility can give businesses using cloud computing a real advantage over their competitors.
Cloud computing allows mobile access to corporate data via smartphones and devices, which is a great way to ensure that no one is ever left out of the loop. Staff with busy schedules, or who live a long way away from the business office, can use this feature to keep instantly up-to-date with clients and coworkers.
5. Disaster recovery
Data loss is a major concern for all organizations, along with data security. Storing your data in the cloud guarantees that data is always available, even if your equipment like laptops or PCs, is damaged. Cloud-based services provide quick data recovery for all kinds of emergency scenarios - from natural disasters to power outages.
Having control over sensitive data is vital to any business. You never know what can happen if a document gets into the wrong hands, even if it’s just the hands of an untrained employee. Cloud enables you complete visibility and control over your data. You can easily decide which users have what level of access to what data. This gives you control, but it also streamlines work since staff will easily know what documents are assigned to them.
7. Competitive edge
Not every company will move to the cloud, at least not yet. However, organizations which adopt cloud find that many benefits that cloud offers positively impacts their business. Cloud adoption increases every year, since companies realize that it offers them access to world-class enterprise technology.
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