Small Business and Cloud Computing

Cloud Computing has become the primary way we access technology. This is why the most heavily used application on your computer and smartphone is likely your browser. In the last 3 years, 500 million people have switched their browser. This choice has allowed FireFox to become the most popular browser in Europe and pushed Chrome past the 20% mark of global market share. 

Cloud Computing is everywhere in our personal lives. You just might not know where to look. If you are looking at pictures on Facebook, you're looking at Cloud Computing. If you are networking on Linkedin, you are networking with Cloud Computing. If you are browsing items or reviews on Amazon.com, you're browsing with Cloud Computing. Or if you use Gmail for your personal email, you are emailing with Cloud Computing. If you search for something on Google.com, you are searching with Cloud Computing. The chances you have already used Cloud Computing several times today are pretty darn good. While Cloud Computing is a huge part of our personal lives, it is still under utilized in our businesses. However, Cloud Computing has many benefits for businesses of any size.

Google Enterprise put together a Small Business Guide to Cloud Computing and lists many of the benefits, which include:   

Cost: Unlike traditional IT systems, cloud applications require no more infrastructure than an internet connection and can even work wirelessly on mobile devices This capability enables companies to reduce upfront capital expense and slash maintenance costs. Tools such as Gone Google can give you a good indication of the potential savings that can be realised by moving to the cloud.

Mobility: Having access to email, documents, contacts and calendars while out and about can help your staff keep in touch with customers and remain productive when they are not in the office. And, there is very little retraining for your staff to use this technology; the familiarity remains the same – it’s just the delivery method that has changed.

Speed: IT departments don’t have to go through the lengthy process of building IT infrastructure and deploying software to multiple of computers when using cloud services. Instead, they subscribe to services and receive them.

Reliability: The cloud computing provider is responsible for maintaining and upgrading the infrastructure. This means greater security and higher levels of uptime, leaving your IT staff free to focus on more important core business processes, safe in the knowledge that software and hardware refresh cycles are already taken care of.

Scalability: You only have to pay for the resources you use. Instead of buying hardware, software and consultants to set up and run applications, businesses can pay a cloud- based provider on a per-user per-month basis, and add or subtract capacity as the load dictates paying only for what they use. This means the services you use can be scaled up or down as required, so as your company grows, your IT systems can grow with you, with very little hassle or cost.

Innovation: small businesses can often not afford huge software installations, and with cloud they no longer have to. Small businesses can now get the very latest versions of the software they need at all times, with no refresh cycles, so they are always working on the very latest technology to help drive their business forward.

You can view and download the full white paper below.