This article will describe what this continually developing aspect of Information technology (IT) is, that has taken the business world by storm in the last two decades and has, over the last 24 months, developed even further.
What is the Cloud?
It may be that many feel a bit embarrassed to ask what this thing that all IT personnel have been talking about and discussing regarding where all your company data sits. Fear not. This article will enlighten you in this regard and aims to provide a clear outline of the key aspects of the cloud that all modern businesses must at least be aware of.
The cloud has been a feature of modern computing for some time now, and yet during the course of the recent global pandemic, this computing feature became essential if not a critical business need. It simply refers to services and software run and used on the internet, not just on your local server or computer.
Key Cloud Computing Aspects that all Businesses Need
This is a key aspect of understanding and, in fact, efficiently using the cloud. Data has grown in size, and the concept of big data driving business is now commonplace, and as such, we all need somewhere to store and retain this data. It is in the cloud. We have all heard how ‘it is all backed up in the cloud’. Offering an instant backup of photos, documents, videos, and more, Microsoft One Drive, Dropbox, and more are now the only way modern businesses can store the immense data they have. Just as noted by AvePoint, this is the future of backing up and must be part of your business IT solutions.
2. Working in the cloud
Access to programs and software wherein the entire workforce can work productively towards the business goals is one of the main benefits of the cloud. Microsoft 365, SharePoint, and any program that allows more than one person to work and collaborate at the same time are now commonplace. You no longer have to email the document or post it or wait until I have done my amendments before you do yours. It is also seamless, and it is all done in the cloud.
If the data is in the cloud, and this data is the lifeblood of the organization or company, then it is paramount to have the best cyber security you can have to protect it. Securing what you have in the cloud, no matter how small or seemingly unimportant, is critical as it offers a way into the organization and, as such, needs defending. Edge computing security that provides a much more end-point-based security protocol is the way to go.
4. Customer relationship management
The cloud and how you set up your company software programs should allow all members of your team access to all customer and client information, when and as they need it. Furthermore, the cloud is useful for the storage, organization, analysis, and access of such data, but it is also able to provide the basis of customer communication. Social media and chat forums are all now hosted in the cloud, making customer communication a great deal more seamless and simpler with the use of cloud computing.
5. Research and discovery
All market research and investigation as to competitors and the market as a whole is now cloud-based. Some apps can be used which do a whole of the market analysis to provide the best analysis possible.
6. Planning and meeting
Being able to access shared workspaces, planning sessions, and apps that will allow brainstorming online from all parts of the globe is a common possibility online and in the cloud. Programs such as Teams, Skype, Asana, and more are all cloud-based and will all provide a means for your work team to meet, plan and make decisions in real-time as to work, deadlines, and related responsibilities. The shared online calendar has become interactive and can include a chat function, and the ability to download and add videos or recordings of the previous meeting, and all this happens in the cloud.
7. Software, services, infrastructure
The cloud will allow a business of any size to use and access the self-same software that is used by the giants in your specific sector. Software as a service is one of the most prominent uses of cloud technology and means that for a fee and with the right service provider, you will be able to make use of both generic and bespoke software and applications that are mobile and accessible from anywhere with an internet connection.
The aspects detailed in this article are the critical business success factors that are all related to the cloud and clearly show why and how your business needs to both understand and then use the cloud to be best of your ability.