Cloud-Based Operations boil down to simply using the cloud for most of your computing needs. This is as an alternative to using software and infrastructure like we used to.
We have all heard of cloud storage for our photos and videos but nowadays there are cloud computing solutions to pretty much everything.
From documents to payrolls and all of them created, edited and stored in the cloud. There are many ways cloud operations can be used throughout the world so it’s worth brushing up on this rapidly developing industry.
For small business owners especially, the list of benefits is never-ending. But it doesn’t just suit them, any size business or individuals can benefit from using the cloud.
First and foremost is the cost. Even paid cloud services are a fraction of the price of purchasing the equivalent software. Not to mention this can all be done from standard PCs.
Modern-day laptops and home desktops are more than capable of accessing cloud services. Nothing is actually saved on the individual’s device so there is nothing to slow it down or cause issues.
This also eradicates the possibility of corrupt files or work simply being lost since it is all constantly backed up online.
Secondly, the cloud can be accessed from anywhere. Google’s cloud system, for example, can be accessed just as easily from a mobile device as it can from a desktop.
And although the list of features for Google Docs may be shorter than a software equivalent such as Microsoft Word, it is more than enough for standard document writing.
The accessibility of it easily makes up for the lack of editing abilities.
The third positive is simply how easy it is. Having multiple employees all download the same software, having to train each one on its uses and then having them keep up with updates and new features is an inefficient way of running, to say the least. Cloud services are streamlined, simple and something most people are now familiar with. Any updates are done without the employees even knowing and any new features will be shown to the colleague by the cloud service itself. No need for any human intervention at all. You can be sure every employee is running the same system, everything will be up to date and compatible with each other’s PC.
Lastly, in the wake of the Covid-19 outbreak, businesses have realised how important it is to have their company running in an accessible and flexible way.
Offices full of computers have been thrust into the past and being able to work from just about anywhere is something more and more people are coming to expect.
Data and research suggests workplaces will never return to how they were – with more online features, people working from home and thus, a larger dependency on the cloud. Due to this, a lot of businesses will need to implement cloud-based operations in order to keep up with their competition.
Like with everything, a cloud-based system is not perfect. The biggest threat is security. Unfortunately, since data is saved online, it is easier for someone uninvited to access your information.
Cloud services obviously try to prevent any sort of data exfiltration but occasionally some get through. Many companies have reported cloud data breaches – some due to human error and some just careful planning on the hackers part.
Depending on the kind of data you’re handling, it may be a good idea to keep some processes offline. This could include anything containing important personal information such as account details or home addresses.
Although, there are specialist cloud services available that offer an even higher level of security for such information.
A slightly different security threat is that that cloud service could potentially shut down, or remove a feature. Unlike downloaded software, you do not own anything you are using on the cloud. This means they have every right to take it away from you.
So potentially you could find yourself having to move all your processes to another host if a company were to go bust or remove a feature that you rely on. This is unlikely due to the success of cloud services but it is something to consider.
Cloud-based operations certainly seem like the future of businesses both big and small and anyone not involved may see themselves left behind in the near future. It may look like nothing but hot air, but cloud services are here to stay.