Times are tough for businesses of all sizes. If you run a small or medium business, however, chances are that your resources are particularly limited. As an increasing number of businesses look for solutions to their problems, many are looking into cloud computing and the advantages it brings. Cloud computing is an easy way to simplify many of your business operations. When you have access to a cloud, you have access to all kinds of software and hardware to which you did not have access before. Cloud computing can benefit your company in three ways. It is easy to maintain, it can keep your costs down and it is more secure than traditional methods of networking.
Save Valuable Dollars with Cloud Computing
In the midst of a recession, balancing your company’s finances is more important than ever. Over the last decade, most companies have experienced a transition from the physical to the digital. Most of the things that were once done with pen and paper are now being done on a computer. Filing systems have been replaced by databases. Contracts can be emailed and signed from a distance. The beginning of the digital age marked a step towards simplification for many companies. While doing everything on a computer is often easier, however, it can also be expensive. Computer software can be costly at the best of times. When you are licensing and outfitting an entire office with a range of programs, the price can be astronomical. To make matters worse, the more digital files you make, the more storage space you need. Disks, hard drives and flash drives are all excellent storage devices, but they are not always cheap, and they are filled all too quickly.
One of the main benefits of cloud computing is the fact that it is much less expensive than traditional methods of computation. When you subscribe to a cloud computing service, you are given access to many of the same programs that you once had to buy individually. Because you are only renting access to these programs, you do not have to pay the high cost of owning the software and you do not have to pay the extensive licensing fees necessary for your business to use a program legally. You simply have access to the programs you need for a fraction of the cost. Additionally, a cloud computing subscription gives your company access to online storage space. You no longer have to pay for disks and drives. Your documents and files are stored safely online.
Cloud Computing: Security First
Security is another huge concern for many small and medium businesses. Most companies must store sensitive client information along with files and documents that are essential to the security of their business. Office computers are prone to attack by viruses and hackers that can steal your information or delete it completely. The possibility of electrical surges, computer crashes and hard drive failures is a reality that businesses face each day. When you keep all of your important files at your office, you are putting them at risk if you don’t have protective measures in place. Should a disaster happen, you could lose everything.
One of the cloud computing facts most appreciated by businesses is that files are much more secure when stored in a cloud. In cloud storage, everything is stored on a remote server that has world class back-up and security systems. Should your office face an emergency or your entire computer system fails, your files will still be safe. If a virus gets past your office network’s defenses, it will not affect the security of your documents. Additionally, you will never have to worry about replacing damaged software or hardware. Because the cloud computing company owns all of the computer programs, you will not lose access to your software if your office network goes down. In fact, your employees may be able to access all of your cloud programs through their personal computers, keeping your business running throughout the repair period.
Cloud environments overall have more stringent security protocols in place than most small and medium sized businesses have in a non-cloud setting. Cloud providers can afford to implement hardened security practices due to the larger pool of users using the applications. It is typically not economical for a small to medium sized business to try to implement comparable security measures.
Why Cloud Computing Is the Easy Maintenance Option
Managing an office computer network is never fun. Programs must be updated and databases must be maintained. Many office administrators do not have remote access to every computer on the network. This means that they must go around to different computers in order to update programs and files, disrupting work and invading the privacy of your employees. If you have a particularly complex network, you may even need to hire a technician just to maintain your system. You must organize storage devices so that they are accessible to those who need them. You must work out a system of passwords and codes so that only authorized employees have access to certain files. Maintaining your system can be a huge hassle.
It takes only a quick look at the cloud computing facts to see that you can avoid many of these maintenance problems by subscribing to a managed cloud computing service. When you sign up for a service, you leave the hard work to the cloud company. They will update your programs as needed and they will set up a secure access system so that files are only available to those who need them. Because your files are stored on a remote server, you never have to worry about de-fragmenting hard drives or keeping track of storage disks. Your company administrators will also have access to the entire system through a simple online dashboard. Changes in structure or security can be done easily. The cloud company has already built the complex infrastructure needed to run the system. All you have to do is log on and use it.
Is Cloud Computing Ideal For Every Business?
Cloud computing is the right choice for many business types and sizes. It is not the best choice for every business. If a company has rather unique and inflexible business processes then it can be advisable for this business not to switch to cloud computing. While cloud computing is simplifying many things it also inherently has the issue that it leads to restrictions and prevents customization of applications. Businesses can only rent standard applications and if those applications need changes then they might simply not be available in the cloud.
Businesses that are built around not having many restrictions with regards to their IT platforms will also find it challenging to implement a cloud strategy. It is relatively easy in a non-cloud environment to allow the use of applications that are specific to single individuals or small groups. Practices like this tend to be harder to implement in a cloud setting as there are many more restrictions on the applications that can be used and that are available.
What To Do Next?
In the end, cloud computing is about simplicity. By simplifying and streamlining your software access and storage system, you can save valuable dollars for your company. By keeping your files and programs on a remote server, you can simplify your security while keeping everything safe. By subscribing to a service and using the cloud company’s maintenance infrastructure, you can spend less time maintaining your system than ever before.
An in-depth analysis leading to a tailored assessment and cloud strategy is needed before a business can make the jump into cloud computing. Roan Solutions has a magnitude of experience to help businesses with this assessment and with implementations of any size. Call today at 1.877.774.4647 to find out how Roan Solutions can help you with your cloud computing strategy and implementation.