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The Cloud Will Change The Way You Work

When you’re running a small business and setting up your company model, you might need to think about what tech you should use. There are a variety of possibilities here, and one of the most important decisions is whether or not you put your company on a cloud. You’ve probably already heard of cloud technology - it’s not a new concept. But a basic way to break it down would be that with cloud computing you store all your data on a massive external server. Typically, this will be offsite, away from your business. However, in certain cases, you may have a smaller server on site. This type of setup is usually reserved for larger companies that can afford the management and operating costs. But what are the benefits of a cloud server for a small business and what difficulties will you need to deal with if you opt for this setup?

The PRO'S

Ultimate Level Of Accessibility

This is perhaps one of the most significant benefits of cloud computing in your company. With the cloud your business is accessible everywhere. It’s a fantastic bonus if you are using remote workers or an outsourcing solution. With a cloud server as part of your network, everyone in your company can access the information and data that they need, regardless of where they are. So, if you are the owner of the business, you could be half a world away and still, theoretically manage your business from the beach. It will allow your company model to be far more flexible and could even make you question whether an expensive central office is worth it anymore.

Of course, it’s not just employees and colleagues who will benefit from this type of set up. Clients will as well, and you’ll be able to provide them with all the information they need directly in a matter of seconds.

Recover From Disaster

Are you worried about the threat of a tech disaster in your business? You should be because this can cripple your company on the market and leave out of the spotlight for days, weeks or even months. The longer you’re in a period of disaster recovery, the more you will lose from your profits. On a typical system or set up a disaster recovery can last at least a few weeks and could likely will take a couple of months if you don’t have a backup.

With a cloud system, the situation is different. Using a cloud server, you can back up every piece of data and system software in your business on the central server. This is encrypted and condensed, so it doesn’t take up a massive amount of data space. If your systems do enter a period of disaster recovery, the system can be back up and running in minutes. It’s just a matter of loading up the backed up files and as long as you backup regularly, you’ll have everything you need. The backup process can even be automated and occur in the background of regular business processes.

Totally Scalable

When you buy a large hard drive, you don’t have many options. You have to invest in a drive with two or three terabytes of data. With a cloud server, the system is completely scalable. So, you might decide that in the first month of your business, you only need storage up to 10Gbs. If that’s the case, then you will only need to pay a cost for 10Gbs worth of space. Of course, if you want to build up to 15 or 20 the next month you can and the costs will increase to the same ratio. This makes payments for cloud servers far easier to manage and provides fantastic value for money in a business.

Super Fast Speeds

Keeping processes fast and efficient is one of the best ways that you can make sure your business is competitive. Clients and customers want products or services as quickly as possible. As you might have guessed, a cloud server will provide instant access to data and ensure that you can immediately speed up all processes in your business model.

Energy Savings

You might be worried about the cost that a cloud server will bring to your business. But cloud servers can be incredibly cost friendly, and we’re not just talking about increased levels of efficiency. With a cloud server, the systems are often off-site. This means that you won’t need to front any additional energy bills and you can actually save a lot of money since you won’t be running the systems in place. Even maintenance costs can be pushed outside your business.

Cons

Keeping Things Secure

You might think that cloud servers provide a higher level of security. To an extent, this will be the case. However, you will be trusting your data to a third part company, rather than keeping everything in-house. There’s always a risk when you choose to do this. You’ll need to decide whether this is worth the risk and if you can trust the company in question. Do make sure that you do the research necessary and look at the reviews of different cloud computing providers before trusting a business with your data.

A Difficult Upgrade

If you don’t already have a cloud system as part of your business model and your company is up and running, then you will be facing an uphill road. It can be difficult to implement a cloud system into an already existing business model. Why? Well, some of the systems and software that you rely on may not be compatible which will mean you’ll need a complete overhaul to get your systems operating effectively.

A Long-Term Financial Commitment

In the short term, the cost of cloud computing will be cheaper. However, this can quickly change as your business continues to grow. Unlike with traditional tech hardware, you will need to pay a monthly cost for cloud usage. As your data levels grow so too will the bills, and you won’t have any negotiation power to lower the amount you are paying. Contracts can be lengthy as well which means that you could be locked in for the long haul. Ultimately, then you do need to consider the lifetime costs of cloud computing for your business rather than just the first year which will probably be far less than you’ll need to pay overall.

Getting Compliant

Governments are cracking down on data regulation for small and large businesses. You need to make sure that data gathering and storage in your business is completely secure for not just your business but your customers as well. The wrong cloud server can leave your business vulnerable because it won’t comply with the latest regulations. Again, this is a matter of making sure that you are choosing the right provider to look after your data.

Reliant On The Net

Finally, you need to be aware that when you use cloud computing, you will be completely reliant on a network connection in your business. You’ll start to run every part of the digital side of your business through the cloud server. What happens if your network fails? Your business will be at a disadvantage until the connection recovers. This is particularly important for businesses located in suburban areas which are more at risk from the worst of the weather elements.

That said, there are services that you can use that will protect your connections from disruptions and ensure that your business can continue to operate on the market.

We hope this helps you determine whether cloud computing is the right choice for your small business.

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