Cloud computing has completely transformed IT and networking in recent years. With vastly increased connection speeds, the impending rollout of 5G across the world’s more advanced nations and a glut of mobile devices now available, the influence of the cloud on your company’s overall productivity can be substantial.
What is the cloud?
Before considering how cloud computing can improve your operations, it’s perhaps best to define what the cloud is. In very simple terms, the cloud is the internet – it is anything you can access remotely that is stored remotely on internet servers rather than your local hard drive. However, more specifically in a business sense, the cloud normally refers to data and software applications operated on remote computers. Cloud computing allows you to access your data and apps anywhere you have an internet connection, on any connected device, very often using the processing power of the remote computer.
Even if you don’t think you use the cloud already, you very likely do. Common examples of cloud computing services include Spotify, Netflix and Google Photos – although these are clearly less business and productivity-oriented uses of the technology.
How the cloud improves efficiency
There are countless ways storing files remotely can save both time and money while also improving productivity and output:
Collaborative working: One of the greatest benefits of storing files remotely is the fact that multiple users can work collaboratively on individual projects at the same time, making updates that are seen in real-time by all. The potential for collaborative working on cloud systems came to the fore during the recent coronavirus pandemic when employees were forced to work from home through distancing requirements – however, the power of cloud collaboration has long been recognized.
Remote processing: As cloud computing uses the processing of remote computers, you can use even the most basic device to perform complex operations. Cloud servers can run advanced software and apps that can be controlled remotely on even very simple tablets or other mobile devices. A cloud service company like 24×7 IT Solutions can offer advice on which apps to install to improve your staff’s productivity as well as giving guidance on any additional processing requirements.
Flexibility: With cloud computing, you can add extra software or capabilities as and when you need them – and cancel your subscriptions when you don’t. Software that is run on servers saves you the upfront costs of full purchase, meaning you only pay for what you use.
Scalability: Companies grow and contract and it’s quite normal for staff members to come and go. With cloud computing you can scale up your operations in an instant, increasing the amount of processing power, storage or number of registered users at the press of a button.
Reduced operating costs and time: By handing your server and network requirements to a third party, you’ll reduce the time you spend trying to maintain networking equipment and also reduce the costs involved in servicing your tech. With the cloud, these costs and obligations become the responsibility of your service provider, freeing up your time.
Improved security and peace of mind: Cloud computing comes with bulletproof security as standard. Even if something should go wrong, cloud services also offer regular back-up and rollback facilities meaning you’ll never have to worry about the security of your data again.