You’ve probably heard all about the cloud and how it can transform your business. However, do you really know what providers mean when they say this? The digital transformation journey is taking every industry by storm, but until you’ve started to explore it in more detail, it’s hard to know what it really means. The cloud can bring your business many benefits, the main one being improving your processes. While there are plenty of technical connotations too, you should be concerned with the advantages it brings to your business, and the ones you can pass onto your end users or customers. So, here are the top ways you can use the cloud to improve and streamline your business.
With the cloud, you can cut down on a number of time-wasting situations, and therefore improve how efficient your processes are, and how efficient your employees are. By choosing a cloud platform, you’re letting another provider handle all of your IT, therefore freeing up your time to add more value to your business. This enables all your teams to act more efficiently, as you’re not worrying about running new updates or checking how your IT is working. Likewise, all of your employees can access data from one single place: there’s no wasting time over finding different locations and worrying about how to transfer or integrate data.
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The cloud also opens up a multitude of new software opportunities. There are many more applications available on the cloud, so if you’re having issues with certain elements of your business, you’ll be able to find an app that can improve it. Plus, with automated features, you won’t need to spend valuable time on tasks that can be done automatically.
You also won’t need to spend time worrying about your IT going down, or needing to run updates on every single computer. If an employee’s device breaks or crashes, you can simply replace it and download all the data and applications back onto it, instead of waiting around for new software to be added – or dealing with the consequences of losing data stored on a single device.
One of the biggest ways that the cloud can streamline your business is by improving your time-to-market. With the cloud, you can access and analyze data much faster than when stored on physical machines. Everyone has access to the same single point of truth, so there’s no mistakes or crossed wires.
With the cloud, you don’t need to spend time or money on acquiring new programs or hardware. You’ve got everything you need to roll out new business models, services or products instantly. Plus, it lets you maintain a constant environment of research, testing and development, ensuring that you can create and innovate without the high costs. With a pay-per-use model, you only need to pay for what you’re using, freeing you up to add value.
Not only do you have the environment to create more, but you have the time too. You don’t need to spend your day working on your IT or running updates. You can spend your time wisely, and coming up with new ways to add value to the business or to your customers.
Likewise, you can use software to link various applications, so you can speed up processes. Using, for example, NetSuite integrations for Salesforce CRM, allows you to convert orders in Salesforce into cash in NetSuite. Depending on what platforms you use, there are various different ways you can do this.
According to a recent study, using cloud can improve your employees’ productivity by 400 percent. This astronomical figure is due to a number of things. Firstly, employees can bring in their own device. This type of strategy – bring your own device (BYOD) – means everyone can work in the way that suits them best. It also means you can save money on providing high-quality devices!
In addition, the cloud enables your workforce to be more connected. From messaging apps to internet calls, there are numerous cloud applications that allow your teams to work together, regardless of where they are. They will all be using the same database too: there are no lengthy delays waiting for data to synchronize across teams.
You’re not alone if you’re using the cloud to improve productivity: 59 percent of businesses that do so are likely to see their productivity increase.
Plus, employees will have access to better IT: they won’t have to worry about crashes or delays, as the cloud system ensures that there’s enough capacity to handle any demand. So, as your employees have more work to do, there’s more computing power to enable them to keep up with demand.
One of the biggest changes you’ll notice is costs. You can reduce your costs, giving you more freedom to streamline your business. With no upfront fees or costs of buying equipment, you can move faster and add efficiency. Depending on the model you use, you’ll also be able to save money with consumption-based pricing. With this way of paying costs, you can pay more when you need to use more, but then scale it back when you don’t need to use it anymore. You’ll have much more freedom with cloud budgets, meaning that your business can benefit in the long term.
The other way that the cloud can streamline your business’s budget, is through who you use. With the cloud, you don’t need to pay for expensive support services or in-house experts. Instead, your service provider will keep you up to date with any and all changes and updates as part of your package. Likewise, you won’t need to keep paying for new hardware and software updates, as technology gets more advanced. The cloud is agile, and changes as the world of tech does, so you’ll never miss out on new opportunities, as your IT will always be compatible and able to work alongside innovative services and applications.
Not only can the cloud streamline your security processes, but it also streamlines your disaster recovery processes. Firstly, employees can set up better security, thanks to two-factor authentication login. Then, if data is lost, it won’t be gone forever: nearly all cloud providers include automatic back-up, so it’s just a case of downloading everything that was lost. Likewise, your provider will be storing and protecting your data in a more robust, advanced way than you ever could – they’re experts in this field, and know exactly how to manage data.