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Cloud computing has been the entire rave in the business IT world in the past few years.
However, banks have generally been slow in embracing this lucrative and seemingly limitless technology, mainly because they are hesitant to hand their data over to outsiders. Then again, this is about to change.
A recent report released by Pricewaterhouse Coopers revealed that about 71 percent of bank executives who took part in a survey said that they will be investing more in cloud computing, which is almost four times higher than last year's figure.
One of the main reasons why banks are warming up to the cloud is because cloud service providers are promising them better reliability and security.
How Cloud Computing Can Improve Operations
Reduce IT Costs
When a bank needs to provide new services or expand its overall operations, it has to invest substantially in hardware, software, licenses and manpower. These costs can be eliminated or reduced with the adoption of cloud computing. Cloud service providers offer a variable pricing model that enables a bank to pay only for the services it uses. With the cloud, banks can turn large up-front capital costs into small on-going operational costs, which leave them with more financial resources to make improvements to other aspects of their businesses.
Increase Agility and Focus
Cloud-based operating models are highly flexible, and they allow banks to develop new products and services more quickly. This makes it possible for them to respond more efficiently to the needs of their customers. Banks can also move their non-critical tasks, such as maintenance, software patches and other computing issues, to the cloud. By doing so, they can concentrate more on providing better financial services, instead of IT.
Enhance Business Continuity
With their data stored in the cloud, banks will be less susceptible to data loss and business interruption in the event of a hack attack, disaster or other unexpected misfortune. Most cloud service providers are capable of providing a high level of fault tolerance, data protection and disaster recovery to ensure business continuity.
Improve Data Accessibility
With cloud computing, banks and their employees can access the latest data, applications and systems from any computer that is connected to the Internet. As such, they can perform their work duties and meet their customers' needs anytime, anywhere. This can lead to a significant increase in productivity and efficiency.
Provide Better Customer Service
Mobile media and social media have changed the way consumers purchase and use financial products and services, as well as make payments. Presently, a large number of consumers are already using the cloud to manage their personal finances. By adopting cloud computing, banks can give their customers more personalized attention and establish closer relationships with them.
It is expected that the number of banks using cloud computing will rise significantly in 2014.
Banks that are slow to jump on the bandwagon will risk losing customers to those that have already adopted the cloud.
John McMalcolm is a freelance writer who writes on a wide range of subjects, from social media marketing to Cloud computing.View John McMalcolm`s profile for more