Keep hearing the term ‘cloud’ being bandied about but don’t truly understand what it is? This article gives you the need to knows.
What is the cloud?
The Cloud is an internet based secure computing and storage solution that allows you to store and access data and programs over the internet instead of on your computer’s hard drive. Where previously you would run applications or programs from software downloaded on a physical computer or server, the cloud now allows you to do this through the internet. This way of working is fast becoming the new normal, around 90% of UK businesses use at least one cloud service.
As long as you have internet connection, you can share and access pretty much anything from the cloud, from anywhere in the world, on any device, securely.
You may be using cloud services without realising it…
- Updating your facebook status
- Posting to instagram
- Checking your bank balance on your phone
- Checking stock when buying online
- When you email from your phone or tablet
Why switch your business to the cloud?
There are so many reasons why businesses are switching to cloud based computing.
- Improved cash flow – cut out the cost of hardware and pay as you go with a manageable monthly subscription that suits your budget and needs.
- Flexibility – it’s ideal for businesses with growing or fluctuating demands, you can scale the capacity up or down quickly and easily.
- Disaster recovery – perfect for small businesses, Cloud based back up saves time, avoids large up-front investment and gives you expertise all in one.
- Software updates – as servers are held off site, your supplier will take care of all things technical for you, including regular software and security updates.
- Improving working relationships – your teams can access, edit and share the documents you want them to, anytime, from anywhere. Keeping everyone up to date at all times with no out of date versions of documents being worked on.
- Working from literally anywhere – if you’ve got the internet, you can be at work from any device. This allows you to offer flexible working to your employees giving a better work/life balance.
- Better security – if you and/or your teams are working from laptops, not only do you have the risk of lost or stolen laptops, but also the data held within it. With the cloud, the data is stored online, meaning you can access it no matter what happens to your machine. You can even remotely wipe data from lost laptops.
So how do you choose a cloud service provider?
With so many service providers out there, it can feel like a mine field when it comes to choosing the right fit for you. Your provider should feel like an extension of your business; they should provide a high level of strategic and technical support that meets your needs.