Before we start discussing the advantages of cloud computing solutions and the different ways it can support your business objectives, let’s take a look at what cloud computing actually is.
What Is Cloud Computing and How Does It Work?
The term cloud computing refers to the delivery of computing services, such as servers, software, storage, and networks via the internet. Traditionally, computing services required the user to buy and maintain physical data centres and servers – leading to data storage and accessibility being very expensive and complicated. Nowadays with cloud computing, users only pay for the services that they are using and can easily access data from anywhere at any time.
Most people are familiar with cloud services such as Microsoft 365 or Google Workplace, but do not necessarily associate them with cloud computing or realise how valuable cloud computing can be for your business. Especially due to the increase of remote working due to Covid-19, cloud computing has become an essential component of a successful business strategy, as those businesses which do not have a cloud infrastructure are struggling especially with the lockdown restrictions.
Cloud computing solutions can be delivered to improve efficiency across almost all business aspects, including collaboration with co-workers, data storage, file sharing, and telecommunication. Nowadays, the number of businesses migrating to cloud services as part of their initiative to modernise the workplace keeps rising.
With cloud computing already being such a fundamental part of our business operation, it makes sense to also rely on cloud computing when it comes to storing data. Businesses need their data to be easily accessible while also making sure they are fully protected from threats and data loss, all of which can be achieved using effective cloud computing solutions.
What Are the Benefits of Cloud Computing Solutions to Store Data?
1. Enables Productive Remote Working
Due to the company’s ability to store and access data via the cloud, employees only need a suitable device, log-in details, and a stable internet connection to access the files that they need. This means, employees can access and work on documents wherever they are and whenever they want. As such, your team can continue to work efficiently, whether they are in the office, at home, or anywhere else in the world.
This feature has been especially significant during the lockdowns which have been spread throughout 2020 and the first quarter of 2021, due to the government asking non-essential workers to work from home.
2. Adds an Additional Layer of Security
All data that is stored in the cloud is encrypted to stop hackers from accessing the data. Some cloud service providers, for example, offer threat detection and management technology which can identify ransomware and corrupted files, quarantine them, and prevent them from spreading. Through the help of these system, companies are able to revert the files and make them safe again.
3. No Data Loss
When a device, such as a laptop, gets stolen, lost, or broken, users do not need to worry about losing their data. Unlike traditional data storage solutions, all data will be stored in the cloud, meaning that it can be accessed from any device at any time.
4. Customisable Access Restrictions
Cloud Service Providers such as M365 enable administrators to establish access policies to certain files and data. This means that only relevant or suitable employees have access to certain data. In the same way, administrators can set policies to enable data to be shared more widely within third parties outside of the organisation.
As an example, the HR department might have sensitive and personal information about employees that their colleagues should not be able to access. Hereby, administrators are able to quickly and easily put provisions in place that means only applicable employees can access these files, restricting anyone else from doing so.
5. Reduced Costs
Unlike traditional data storage methods, with cloud computing you will not have the added costs of expensive software, hardware, servers, and installations. Additionally, you will not have to worry about updating or upgrading your equipment as this will be administered by your IT support partner as part of your normal subscription fee.
Microsoft SharePoint, an application which is part of the Microsoft 365 cloud service, provides staff with the option to customise their pages to their own requirements. Instead of offering a system that works on the basis of “one size fits all”, SharePoint makes it possible for users to customise their dashboard to best suit their workload without having to be an IT expert. This will help staff manage their workflow and personalise their pages effortlessly.
7. Ability to Work Online and Offline
If an employee is out of the office for a day or working from somewhere with a limited internet connection, they can sync the documents they need to their device. This will enable them to work offline when it is not possible to connect to the internet. Once an internet connection has been re-established, the documents will automatically be updated and synced to the cloud.
For example, if an employee needs to travel to a meeting across the country, they can sync work to their laptop in order to continue working on the train or plane, even if there is no internet connection available. This flexibility will boost productivity and enable employees to get more done throughout the working day.
8. Effortless Collaboration
Microsoft 365 and Google Workplace both have the capacity for real-time editing, which provides employees with the opportunity to simultaneously collaborate on a shared document. SharePoint, for example, guarantees that the editing takes place in real-time to ensure remote and office-based staff can work with and beside each other. It also tracks changes, and you can enable notifications to always be up to date about any edits which might have taken place.
9. Reduced Stress
When working together with your IT partner, they are able to take control of all relevant monitoring, maintaining and upgrading of your cloud computing solutions. In fact, Astec IT will use advances in technology to detect potential issues and rectify them before the network clashes, meaning you never have to worry about faults or downtime when it comes to storing your data.
How Did Covid-19 Impact Cloud Computing Solutions?
The coronavirus pandemic has reinvented the way we work, and cloud computing has played a crucial role in this. The pandemic and the following lockdowns have highlighted the importance of always making business data secure and easily accessible. The agility, flexibility as well as scalability of scoring data over the internet makes cloud computing an inevitable solution for all businesses within the next few years.
Many people believe that the recent working-from-home movement will make remote working standard practice in the long run. Therefore, businesses need to ensure that they have the right cloud computing solutions in place to ensure successful remote working can continue.
We at Astec IT help South-East England and London based businesses to leverage the advantages that come with the move towards cloud computing solutions, both before and after the pandemic. Due to our company’s remote set-up, our highly trained engineers are able to provide personal insights into remote working and cloud set-up that allows employees to work efficiently, collaboratively and stress-free from anywhere in the world.
If you are interested in finding out more about cloud computing solutions and how they can benefit your business get in touch with us now to receive a free consultation.