In the last several years cloud technology has become the rage, and for good reason. There are a lot of great reasons to utilize the cloud whether you’re a soldier overseas looking at pictures of your kids or an international corporation that needs to be able to share information instantly across the globe. Information is accessible and provided at speeds that are important to running a business with very few drawbacks. Still, no system is perfect and even the convenience of the cloud has to deal with issues like technical difficulties and network security. Check out some of the great reasons to invest in a cloud managed service as an asset in managing a company.
Companies, particularly ones that work outside of a typical brick and mortar building, know the importance of accessibility. With the cloud, employees can access vital information to their job from anywhere. Cloud software allows users to access files and other media using laptops, tablets and smart phones as well, making it easier than ever before to stay connected and be productive anywhere. Another huge benefit to that accessibility is backup and recovery. Technical disasters happen, having a contingency plan for data backup when that happens involves having everything backed up and ready to go on the cloud.
It is incredibly expensive to manage desktop software in-house. Licensing per user alone is huge, add in capacity and other factors and it simply isn’t a cost effective option. With the cloud a company gets virtually unlimited storage, tech support that specializes in data backup isn’t necessary, and there are with several different attractive and affordable options for companies of all sizes. In addition to the different subscriptions, companies also have to choose appropriate bandwidth however, even with that expense it is still a more cost effective solution than to create a cloud infrastructure within the company.
The cloud isn’t a single location, but rather lives in the internet. And with the internet, storage isn’t a problem. With virtually unlimited storage the cloud is ideal for businesses that deal in large amounts of software, information or who has a large infrastructure that requires a lot of space. Most users are familiar with the cloud in their personal life thanks to entities like the iCloud and Google Drive. These free services are often enough for individuals, but with a monthly subscription companies (or those individuals who need more), storage isn’t an issue.
Having the convenience of the cloud doesn’t mean much if it’s too slow. One of the biggest benefits of the cloud, specifically certain cloud service providers, is the download and upload speeds. When a company invests in a good cloud plan, information can instantly be available. For example, an audio recording from a lecture hall in London, England can instantly be available to students in the United States when a customer chooses the right subscription plan. Of course a company or individual’s internet provider can impact how quickly information can be obtained, but most cloud servers are constantly improving how information is stored and retrieved for their clients.
Because of the connectivity of the cloud, desktop software updates, updates to apps and software patches are available to clients instantaneously. Customers see this when a smart phone automatically updates and makes software changes to the phone so that it can function better or improve network security. Employees get the benefit of this in much the same way as company devices are updated with company-specific that allows employees to do their jobs more efficiently than ever before.
The cloud exists on the internet. If you can get on the internet, then you have access to the cloud. This should be a very simple matter but as anyone who lives in a region with poor cell service can attest, having access to the internet isn’t always an option. Many places, such as the Appalachian Mountains in the eastern United States, have spotty cell service and unreliable access to the internet. For companies that rely on access to the cloud to conduct their business, this can be a huge strike against the convenience of the cloud.
In recent years, there have been very public information breaches and cloud companies have worked hard to ensure that their customers can safely use their services. Still, once something is in the cloud, it is vulnerable. There are several security protection options to make information safer, such as encryption on the client’s side before it goes to the cloud, but ultimately there’s still a degree of vulnerability there. With numerous advancements in encryption, companies and individuals can have a reasonable expectation of privacy and safety, but the fact remains that the cloud is a room with a door, and the key can still fall into the wrong hands.
When information is hosted in-house and something goes wrong, there’s a group of employees prepared to get to work immediately to fix the situation. The same applies to cloud services, of course, but they don’t answer to the client whose information is now unavailable. The cloud is massive with many functioning parts that keeps information stored by clients at their fingertips. Even the best cloud services experience outages and technical difficulties occasionally. And, when that happens, those who use that cloud server are now at the mercy of a tech support team that is under no obligation to report repair times or progress.
As with any form of sharing information, the cloud isn’t perfect. The convenience of being able to share information instantly within the company, or recover from technical catastrophe client side, is undeniable. But, the same concerns exist today that were there a few years ago. How safe is that information? And, what happens when the cloud experiences difficulties? Is it going to be available when needed? Many companies find these concerns acceptable in light of the many benefits of having a subscription to a cloud server. As many people spend enormous amounts of time taking pictures and using social media, cloud technology has become an invaluable part of the modern world.