The Cloud: Light and Effective for Business

Doing business is a balancing act – with so many concerns and issues on every business owner plate, it’s only prudent to consider solutions that will help lighten the load to operate more efficiently. And for many, that solution is cloud computing.

As the economy rebounds, businesses need to be ready to stay competitive while keeping costs under control. Small and medium-sized businesses must maximize the productivity of resources without compromising the end product or service. Cloud computing is helping more and more small and medium-sized businesses balance costs and resources.

Lower Costs
The cloud is generally more cost effective, and spreads payment out over time. Monthly payment for subscriptions for applications allows businesses to pay only for services used each month. Updates and maintenance costs are usually included in the subscription cost. Companies save on dedicated IT support – as well as the cost of the electricity, space, and hardware that run the applications that manage your business operations.

Ensure Availability
Another plus for the cloud is that it is more reliable and dependable. Few companies can afford to frequently update their hardware and software, so when problems arise, they have nowhere to turn. With the cloud, the application provider pays for the specialized staff to keep hardware and software running smoothly.

Secure Data
Speaking of dependability, the cloud is also a better place to store your data. Depending on your subscription, you can arrange for regular backups of data to secure servers in case of any sort of incident – hardware failure, natural disasters, and more. With data backup through the cloud, you are better assured that you can always access your data no matter what happens.

If you are interested in knowing more about how cloud computing can help your business function more efficiently, please feel free to contact us so we can sit down with you and develop a custom solution based on your specific needs.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

Cloud Computing Fuels Growth

Cloud computing is changing the way businesses operate. By accessing software and services through the internet instead of on internal hardware, companies can save capital and respond to opportunities quickly.

With cloud computing, businesses can tap into software and services as they need them, using an Internet connection and a web browser. Cloud services can help you manage growth and connect with your staff across town or the world.

Manage Growth

One of the toughest aspects of running a small business is predicting what resources are needed to support future demand. If the company grows quickly, more people and equipment need to be added to fulfill the work. Too much investment for the future is risky.

Cloud computing allows companies to quickly access the applications needed to increase capacity, support growth and handle busy periods. If a customer or project demands increase, software in the cloud scales without a big outlay of cash. The flexibility of the organization increases with cloud computing because it is easy to adjust and scale.

Improve Collaboration

Companies with remote employees can particularly benefit from cloud computing. More and more small and medium-sized businesses support home workers and employees that aren’t in the main office every day.

No matter where they’re located, employees can use cloud applications to have meetings, talk to one another, share files, and collaborate on materials in real time. With cloud computing, you can build a team that works together seamlessly, and improved productivity and better communication allows businesses to capitalize on new opportunities quickly.

Find out more about the benefits of cloud computing. We’ll help you find the solutions that fit your business and your budget.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

The Consumerization of IT

Consumerization is the trend in which new information technology first makes waves in the consumer market, and its popularity then prompts businesses to adopt strategies to incorporate it into their processes. But the real questions are: how does it really affect your business, and what should you do about it?

“People say you have better technology at home than at work. That’s true. Thirty-seven percent of U.S. info workers are solving customer and business problems using technology they master first at home, then bring to work.”i

So says Vahé Torossian, corporate vice president of the Worldwide Small and Midmarket Solutions and Partners (SMS&P) group at Microsoft. His comment illustrates the growing trend in IT referred to as consumerization, which is when new IT comes out first in the consumer market and is then adopted by business organizations.

With more and more organizations adopting this trend, many companies find it hard to catch up with everything else that comes with the package. For some, consumerization works fine and is beneficial, but there are also those whose operations become more open to risk because of it.

It’s become quite clear that, at the very least, companies need to look at both the short and long term effects of consumerization on the way they do business. Studies should be completed on its effects, and policies need to be developed to properly address the trend. The benefits can be significant, but the risks such as the increased vulnerability of your system due to decreased security when work is done outside the office can pose a serious threat as well.

While the general consensus is that new trends mean better business, it’s the way you handle the details that determines how they affect your organization and your productivity which is why it’s best to fully understand the trend and its impact on you. We encourage you to give us a call so we can sit down with you and discuss strategies and policies you can use to respond to consumerization based on your specific needs.

i Reference

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The Cloud: What Difference Does It Make?

A recent survey on the perception of cloud computing shows that almost half of small businesses are unconvinced of the benefits that cloud computing can offer. With better and easier IT management through the Internet as well as features like secure off-site data storage, cloud computing is at least worth a second look.

A recent survey by Newtek’s SB Authority Market Sentiment shows that almost half of small businesses do not see how cloud computing can cut down on costs and help increase their productivity, with an additional 32 percent still unsure about the whole idea.

At the very least, what these results show is that there is a pressing need for a more widespread and comprehensive information campaign about cloud computing. While many companies see the cloud as a mere fad, there’s much more to it than meets the eye, and what it offers can make a definite and concrete difference in the way a business conducts its operations.

What sets cloud computing apart from other hosting services is the way it’s managed and used. Management is handled completely by the service provider, and subscribers can adjust the specific features they use and pay only for those, similar to how on demand IT services work. Cloud computing usually also includes virtual data storage, with most if not all data stored off-site and in the cloud service’s servers.

Of course, the way the cloud impacts each particular organization will vary, and how it will affect your business in the short and long term depends on your needs and requirements and whether you even need it in the first place. There are pros and cons to any cloud-based service, but at the very least it deserves some serious thought.

If you want to find out more about cloud computing and how it may affect your business, please give us a call and we’ll be happy sit down with you and discuss any issues and concerns you have, and help you determine whether the cloud is right for you.

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.

 

Save Files Directly to the Cloud

Do you ever wish you could save files you find online directly to a cloud storage service provider? With this handy new free tool called Cloud Save you can. Cloud Save is available for the Google Chrome browser at the Google Chrome webstore.

After you install the extension in Google Chrome, you will find a new menu item when you right-click or try to download files in your browser. The menu item allows you to send the file (without having to download to your harddisk) directly to popular web-based services including Dropbox, Google Docs, Facebook, Flickr, Picasa, and more. Simply right-click a file, then decide where you’d like to send it.

Related materials: Google Chrome webstore

Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.