As businesses expand, they begin to experience some really difficult and expensive information technology (IT) challenges. Maintenance of hardware and software facilities can be a pain in the neck with traditional business computing systems. Cloud technologies and services present a smart, user-friendly solution. It's also cheaper than traditional systems and increases the productivity and workflow of the business.
Cloud computing, by definition, is technology that makes use of the internet and servers centralized in remote data centers to store and maintain data and applications. So, Cloud technology makes computing more efficient by centralizing the storage of data, processing, and bandwidth.
Cloud services and products also allow users to make use of applications and software without installing the application on their personal computers or mobile devices. Users can access their personal files and documents by using any computer or device with internet access. The costs in effort and money spent on maintaining an in-house IT infrastructure is being gradually being replaced with Cloud-based infrastructure. While Cloud-based services are perfect for large enterprises, they've also proven ideal for small and medium-sized businesses.
Private Cloud or Public Cloud:
Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)- Examples of SaaS include SalesForce, Microsoft Office 365, Dropbox, Gmail, and so on. With these services, just log in with your credentials and get full access to the application and your previously stored information. With SaaS services, you can access your information anytime, anywhere, as long as you have internet access.
Private Cloud-The term "Cloud computing" or "the Cloud" also includes the utilization of outsourced hosting environments for remote data and file storage. Primarily, there are two cloud hosting scenarios that should be considered. These are shared, virtual servers, or dedicated, private Cloud servers. A private Cloud consists of servers that are dedicated to your company and data. Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services are the largest providers of Cloud hosting solutions.
Why You Should Use the Cloud?
Money savings- Cloud computing saves you a substantial amount of money, the cost of Cloud computing is much more flexible than traditional methods. If there is a need to pay for any service, you only need to pay for the services that you are using.
Disaster Recovery- With Cloud computing, it's very easy to recover any file as long as they are backed up on the Cloud. So, if your physical devices malfunction, or are lost or stolen, your data is still safe and easily recoverable.
Work anywhere- Cloud computing enables you to access your files from anywhere as long as you're connected to the internet. Many Cloud services also offer mobile apps so you can have access to your files irrespective of the device you are using.
Reduce Hardware- The use of Cloud computing reduces the amount of hardware used and the size of data centers. Some organizations eliminate physical data storage completely by operating their business totally on the Cloud.
Improved Collaboration- Cloud computing improves collaboration by allowing groups to meet virtually. You can view and edit shared documents and material with controlled access. This ability reduces the time spent to market and increases product development and customer service.
There is no denial in the fact that there is a mad rush in adopting cloud technology and many organizations are eager to implement these solutions. This reflects that there is a necessity to add the new "it" in IT. It has been rightly said that instead of depicting cloud technology with the help of white fluffy cloud, organizations should use the image of a tornado as this is how fast cloud computing is growing today. It has been estimated that the expenditure on global cloud computing equipment is predicted to reach $80 billion dollars in 2018.
The benefits of cloud computing for an organization are very clear and it is easy to understand how they can transform any business. It is clear that cloud computing can increase scalability, storage capacity, productivity, efficiency and better use of analytics. But keeping these advantages in mind there seems to be urgency in the market to introduce more swiftness in their day to day operations and prove themselves to be first and fast in designing and deploying cloud solutions for their organization.
When an organization adopts a tailored approach in selecting those solutions that are best for their organization, instead of diving into the next available technology that might not fit with the business objectives and create difficulties and hamper their progress it will help you to move a little faster and help you to gain a competitive advantage in the business environment.
Since there is a huge hype around the adoption of cloud technologies, organizations often expect quick and over the top results when they decide to adopt them into their business operations. But, before fully committing to cloud solutions top management should carefully plan out the course that they would adopt and themselves certain fundamental questions before making any further commitments. They need to define the goals that they are expecting to achieve and what are their relation to the cloud and how these solutions are going to help the business achieve its objectives and goals.
Also, the decision makers need to have a clear approach to what goals are achievable and how they are beneficial for the organization. Cloud should not be considered as a savior for the organization's IT obstacles. Measurement plays a vital role in any new process for an enterprise, and the cloud is not any different. Before rushing into implementation, CIOs should determine how they are going to track effectiveness and success at the outset. They need to drive toward a strategy that engages the cloud in a multi-phased approach that helps to demonstrate early, quick wins from which the organization can gain confidence to tackle increasingly complex cloud capabilities.
Decision makers for any organization have a big decision to make as far as new technology is concerned i.e. to compare old vs. the new and then decide what might work for them according to the organization's goals and objectives. Whatever technology that works for them today might be a threat for tomorrow and for enterprise-wide adoption of cloud technologies CIO's need to understand the benefits as well as the setbacks that might come with it along with being prepared for them when the time comes. In short, you don't need to abandon the reliable "old" technology that works for you before making sure whether the new one is the one for you.
Before going all in for the cloud adoption every organization needs to always have an option to go back from where they started if they see that cloud technologies are not beneficial for them and they can perform without them, which might be a rare scenario. Every CIO needs to ensure that they adopt a cloud solution that can be molded as the market conditions transform and where you can easily add and alter features to the cloud applications.
Data privacy and Security are two of the most important things that organizations go for when they are adopting cloud technologies. It is vital for decision-makers to take their own time and examine all the aspects of the security features of the cloud solutions before giving a green signal and moving forward to purchase and implement cloud technologies. They also need to ensure that they have security policies and procedures in place when they are dealing with data security in the cloud.
When organizations have decided to introduce cloud solutions in its diverse departments, it can have an efficient effect on the company's culture. There are certain times where employees are really not prepared for the change that is about to be implemented. Since the benefits of cloud are extreme for every organization, it is upon the top management how they are able to adopt the latest technology in their daily operations and drive the organization forward along with implementing the technology the right way avoiding all stagnation and setbacks. The right time to adopt the cloud is right now but it should be done with a lot of care and with proper planning. While implementing the cloud technology the management should take regular feedbacks from the personnel who are operating it directly so that they are aware of whether the organization is moving in the right direction or not.
Hence it is essential for every organization to understand whether the staff is ready for the new technology and will be able to adopt it effortlessly.