For organizations seeking greater efficiency and agility, the cloud offers an increasingly appealing option. This is especially the case for smaller businesses, which are often seeking to scale resources quickly but are hindered by reduced IT budgets.
Whether you’re looking to make an initial move to the cloud or planning a major shift in strategy, cloud provides a solid technology framework that enables you to launch applications quickly, efficiently and securely. With smart planning and the right approach, the cloud can help transform your business on multiple levels, including:
1. More Effective Customer Support
Not only can cloud help drive innovation and speed time to market, it can elevate the customer experience with more responsive support capabilities. The cloud’s flexible information sharing framework connects customers to resource across multiple channels and devices, enabling fast, timely response and quick access to information.
Hosting how-to videos or support tools is as simple as scaling cloud bandwidth. With flexible deployment options and pay-as-you-go pricing, businesses can cost efficiently impress customers with high quality web content, online forums, webinars, personalized applications, and interactive engagement.
With the ability to access data that’s cached on servers closer to them, interaction with data is faster and more reliable. Automated load balancing capabilities enable fast and efficient scalability on-demand while workflow monitoring tools can track application performance to help prevent interruptions or downtime that could impact users.
Services and applications can be released to customers sooner, thanks to regular, automatic updates to the cloud infrastructure and more condensed release cycles for upgraded features and functionality. You can take advantage of the latest technology advances and innovations much quicker and rest easy knowing your cloud provider’s technical specialists are safeguarding your infrastructure with the latest protective techniques and security measures.
2. Improved Productivity
Cloud computing can give your employees immediate access to advanced tools and resources like file sharing, instant messaging, web conferencing ,and live streaming in the office or remotely, helping to accelerate performance on a more consistent basis. Mobile workers become more productive since they no longer have to worry and struggle to maintain paper copies of spreadsheets, documents, and forms.
With mobile technology, remote employees can access the same enterprise applications and files as their on-site coworkers, while enjoying the flexibility to work on their own terms. Even travel interruptions can be converted from downtime to productive opportunities.
Cloud resources can be easily stored, accessed, and recovered with just a few clicks. In addition, all system updates and upgrades are performed automatically, off-site by the cloud provider, saving time and effort and reducing the workload demand on your internal IT team. Meanwhile, companies cut space and utility costs by housing fewer employees on-site.
3. Flexible Collaboration
The resilient, high availability of cloud environments helps ensure fully location-independent access to protected resources and applications. Team members are no longer tied to their workstations, but instead can collaborate and access data from any location on the mobile device of their choice.
Cloud helps improve collaboration by allowing multiple teams in disparate locations to share files in real-time and work together more efficiently. With integrated document control capabilities, you maintain control but also are able to improve workflow as team members can instantly see which documents they are authorized to access and view.
Team members can easily share records and files while maintaining control over which documents can be edited, viewed and shared. You can determine which users have access to your data and the level they are granted. Since one document version can be worked on by different users, there’s no need to have copies of the same document in circulation.
4. Enhanced Data Security
Today’s cloud providers offer a number of advanced security features, ranging from encryption and authentication techniques, to application-centered security such as role-level access. At the same time, automated monitoring tools can track data access and usage and provide critical insight into areas of vulnerability and risk, helping to reduce the potential for a network intrusion or data breach.
Another important advantage with cloud is that your approach doesn’t have to be an all-or nothing proposition. You can choose the degree to which you want to move each business application or workload to the cloud and assign different operational requirements to the appropriate operating model.
A hybrid cloud environment allows you to manage applications and workloads so that confidential data has the greatest security with on-site protections, while less sensitive data is stored elsewhere in the cloud. Meanwhile, shorter, more frequent delivery cycles enable the latest security protections to be incorporated into services and applications much sooner.
Thanks to its virtualization capabilities, cloud also offers a number of important backup and disaster recovery advantages. With infrastructure encapsulated into a single software or virtual server bundle, when a disaster occurs, the virtual server can be easily duplicated or backed up to a separate data center and quickly loaded onto a virtual host. This can substantially cut recovery time compared to traditional (physical hardware) methods where servers are loaded with the application software and operating system and updated to the last configuration before restoring the data.
Gaining A Competitive Edge In The Age Of Digital
Cloud computing provides data infrastructure and resources where you need them with without a large capital expense. While configuring and implementing an reliable, high-performance cloud environment can be challenging and time-intensive, when deployed properly, the effort can provide a number of performance-enhancing benefits, helping to improve operational agility and transforming how you do business.