Cloud computing used to be a nice-to-have for small businesses, but these days it’s a must. Research by Tech Jury found that 60% of businesses migrated their entire workloads to the cloud in 2020 and 81% had at least one application running in the cloud. The cloud allows businesses to save money, streamline workflows, work remotely and stay agile, which is incredibly important in an ever-changing, post-pandemic world.
Let’s take a look at the six key ways in which cloud computing is changing the way that we do business.
1. Reduced Costs
Cloud computing means that businesses don’t need to spend as much money on hardware. Not only is hardware expensive to purchase, it can also be costly to maintain and repair, so this is a real win. Typically, hardware becomes obsolete within 4-5 years. However, cloud-based applications are upgraded by the providers rather than by you, which means that there is no extra effort or cost on your part – you just need to continue paying your subscription.
2. Save Time
Constant upgrades aren’t just a drain on your bank account – they’re a huge drain on your time, too. How often have you sat down to tackle a project… only to be informed that your computer needs to install updates for the next two hours before you can proceed? Fortunately, this won’t be an issue with cloud computing as all of the updates are installed automatically without you having to wait a moment or lift a finger.
3. Flexible Working
Cloud computing creates the possibility to work from anywhere with an internet connection, and this carries several benefits for businesses. For one thing, you and your employees can access information from virtually anywhere without having to be on site, which is very convenient and a huge time-saver.
Furthermore, the cloud means that you are able to give your employees greater opportunity to work from home which can have a positive impact on both productivity and morale. A survey by Connect Solutions found that 77% of employees who work from home a few times per month show increased productivity. Meanwhile, research by the CIPD found that flexible working increases employee engagement and reduces staff turnover by up to 87%.
4. Greater Storage Capacity
Cloud computing means that businesses no longer need to worry about running out of storage. When a business runs out of space to store physical files, they must either get rid of certain copies or rent a new space and purchase new storage solutions, which can be very expensive. With cloud computing, however, it’s simply a case of upgrading your subscription which comes with a much lower cost.
5. Secure Storage
Paper files can easily be stolen or damaged by fire and flooding, but files stored in the cloud have no such vulnerabilities. Business owners often worry that using the cloud may leave them vulnerable to cyber attacks, but if cloud data is in fact secured very securely – far more so than physical files. No storage solution is 100% but files in the cloud are much, much safer than the ones on your computer’s hard drive, or in your filing cabinet.
6. Easier Collaboration
Cloud computing eliminates the need for sending files back and forth via email and continuously double-checking that you’re working with the latest version. Team members can collaborate in real time, witness live updates and easily access older versions of a document if necessary. Best of all, autosave means that you’ll never lose progress again!
Cloud computing offers businesses numerous benefits that allow for improvements in a variety of areas, from staff productivity to digital storage. Businesses should harness the power of the cloud now in order to increase profitability and efficiency, whilst remaining agile, which is of the utmost importance in the current economic climate.