One of the major buzzword phrases in the world of business over the past few years has been ‘the cloud‘, but what exactly does it mean and can it save your company money?
Essentially, most of the major software and service providers are moving towards using a ‘cloud’ model, so at some point one or more of your business practices will encounter an option to change from local device storage to a remote, server-based system.
The concept of ‘the cloud’ aims to take full advantage of the high data transmission speeds of modern internet connections and to store information on internet-based central servers.
One way in which using cloud services can save a business money is on the outlay needed for computing equipment. Server rack storage solutions can be expensive to install and maintain. Considering this, the more information that is kept securely off-site, the less hardware you need to invest in yourself.
Cutting down on unnecessary costs
The other main area of saving is in relation to the purchasing of software programmes and applications themselves. Whereas in the past it was not unusual for a company to invest heavily in bespoke systems that could cause problems if they needed reinstallation or suffered localised crashes or downtime, by using cloud services you can rely on major systems that are regularly updated and maintained at no extra cost.
This can be particularly cost-effective when it comes to areas including book-keeping, data storage and file sharing, but also has many uses in activities such as customer relationship management.
Recent research by International Data Corporation (IDC) has shown that global spending on public IT cloud services is expected to approach $100 billion in 2016. Over the 2012-2016 forecast period, public IT cloud services will have a growth rate which is five times higher than the IT industry overall.
Cloud usage is not a stand-alone phenomenon, but it is linked to the way in which businesses and consumers alike are changing how they interact with online services. Any company that doesn’t take advantage is in danger of not only missing out on savings but being left behind their competitors.
Written by Emma Rushworth – Liquid Accounts Marketing