5 reasons the cloud will benefit your business

Jenny Carpenter

When cloud services were a new trend, many IT professionals resisted using them. A few traditional techies had a perception of relinquishing control if they moved services away from the usual comfort zone of an on-premise model, citing security and reliability as concerns.

15395728Much has changed since then. For starters, cloud services have matured significantly, and we now live in a world where Internet access is widespread. This alone has reduced concerns over possible performance issues related to accessing services online rather than via local servers.

In fact, as many companies have now discovered, the use of cloud services has actually levelled the playing field, and enabled smaller businesses to enjoy the kind of IT provision previously only open to large enterprises. What’s more, the costs involved are small, consistent and controllable. IT pros who continue to stick with traditional methods now seem old-fashioned and a bit closed-minded.

The 2013 report from IBM revealed that cloud adoption will be seen as strategically important for around 72% of business decision-makers within the next three years.

That’s one reason adopting cloud services now makes real sense for your business. Here are four more reasons migration is now a smart move:

  • Flexibility – In terms of working location for all employees, including IT staff, it’s now “the norm” for people to work from wherever they happen to be, using whatever device they have to hand. A quick glance around the nearest Starbucks shows the extent of this “work anywhere, anytime” trend.
  • Minimize expensive hardware – Cloud services enable companies to move away from the old-fashioned model of having one central server room full of expensive hardware. This setup always provided a worrying single point of failure and tied IT staff to a central location.
  • Effective, predictable costs – Rather than having to set aside significant sums of money for periodic hardware and software implementations, companies of all sizes can buy into cloud services on an “as needed” basis, making budgets easier to manage.
  • Innovative technology – Cloud services enable companies to continually use the most up-to-date technology, without bouncing between “state of the art” and “end of life” applications depending on where they are in an on-premise upgrade cycle.

Above all, cloud services enable companies to focus IT resources where they are most necessary. Priority projects, staff training and overall system security are prime examples. Assigning routine support and maintenance jobs to IT staff is now less of a priority.

A wholesale move to cloud services may not make sense for every business, and many will still find that some on-premise infrastructure makes sense. However, companies of all sizes should look very carefully at what really makes sense in the modern IT world. Having a bank of on-premise servers for things like software updates and antivirus deployments is no longer necessary, and very unlikely to be cost-effective.