Cloud Services – Can Your Business Cope Without Them?
Cloud computing has taken the business world by storm and experienced high levels of growth year on year, so much so that Gartner predicts that by the end of 2015, spending on Cloud services will exceed $180 billion worldwide. However, there are still questions of whether Cloud services are beneficial to all businesses or just a select few, and whether businesses could actually cope without them?
Below we’ve discussed some of the pros and cons of Cloud services to see if it’s possible for businesses to cope without them.
Cloud Services: The Pros
Something that no business will turn their nose up at is a solution that will allow them to make significant cost savings. Migrating to the Cloud, whether it’s for software, infrastructure or both, eliminates expensive costs associated with owning licenses and running IT equipment in-house.
With Cloud services, you have the advantage of being able to pick and select what you want, so you’re only ever paying for services that you actually need and use. Another benefit is that these services can easily be scaled up or downsized, depending on your situation, ensuring they continue to meet your needs. This flexibility and scalability is highly beneficial for businesses, especially in terms of data storage, which according to Gartner is the resource that most businesses are looking to move to the Cloud.
Quick deployment times
Integrating conventional tools and applications can be difficult and time consuming but Cloud services make it easy. New Cloud applications and services can be set up and delivered seamlessly, allowing you to start benefiting from them on day one of their deployment.
Access from anywhere
Another key benefit of the Cloud is that services can be accessed from any location, using (almost) any device, providing you have the right login details and a connection to the internet. This allows businesses to facilitate remote working and offer more flexible working conditions to their employees.
Finally, the Cloud offers business owners a greater guarantee of compliance. This is due to the fact that Cloud service companies are required to provide clients with SLAs and certifications that ensure compliance. This lessens the burden on in-house IT teams and gives them the opportunity to use their time more productively.
Cloud Services: The Cons
Whilst Cloud services purports to offer lower costs, what this often means in reality is lower initial costs or capital outlay. There is an ongoing revenue expenditure which, over time, can add up to more than the original, initial outlay. It’s worth doing the sums!
Learning to share
Many Cloud computing solutions require you to access your resources from a shared resource library, so you may find that this affects your performance from time to time. However this issue can easily be resolved by using private Cloud services instead.
Reliance on internet connection
Another downside for businesses using the Cloud is that they will depend heavily on their internet connection. If it’s slow or offline, there’ll be no way of accessing Cloud based software and applications.
Of course, the same applies to your Cloud service provider. If for one reason or another they are experiencing an outage or network issues, then your Cloud services may be interrupted. There have been some high profile examples of this scenario in the media in recent months.
Recent hacking incidents are still at the forefront of many business owners’ minds. Privacy of data still poses a threat to Cloud services; however encryption and firewall systems are constantly being improved to prevent history from repeating itself.
Does your business really need cloud services? Looking back at our list of pros and cons, you can see that there are probably more advantages to using Cloud services than disadvantages. Whilst some businesses are still happy using their old technology, we personally believe that in order to remain competitive in today’s tough market, migrating to Cloud technology must be considered. It’s not really a question of whether you could cope without Cloud services but more a question of whether they can add value to your business and help you succeed.
If having read this article you’d like to discuss the merits of implementing Cloud technology give us a call on 0131 603 7910 to discuss the pros and cons for your organisation.
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