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Cloud technology has brought exciting new opportunities for small businesses to compete on a global scale. Thanks to innovative products that provide storage, software, and infrastructure through the cloud, businesses can minimize their IT expenses. Additionally, the monthly or annual billing rates set by cloud service providers can help you eliminate surprise expenses such as emergency server repairs.
Everything from PBX phone services to accounting and project management tools come through the cloud. Consequently, you can equip your small business with the capabilities that, in the past, only large corporations could afford. The following list of benefits will help you learn more about the benefits cloud computing offers your business.
1. Easily Accessible Software Solutions
In the past, businesses needed to buy and manage servers and computers to run their software. This practice required a substantial financial investment in equipment and human resources. As a result, only big companies could take full advantage of the digital revolution.
Thanks to the cloud, businesses can have access to some of the most powerful software, infrastructure and platforms in the world, regardless of their location, without having to buy a single server. Cloud computing streams applications from the internet, where service providers have all the needed equipment on hand, directly to their users.
Accessibility extends beyond the walls of your facility. Most cloud-based applications run through standard desktop and mobile web browsers, although many have their own dedicated apps. You can build your team using the best professionals from around the world.
2. Scaling and Flexibility
Cloud computing helps companies manage fluctuating demand. In the past, companies with on-premises systems had to buy server and workstation upgrades to accommodate new users. Now, when you need to expand your staff, you can log into your service provider to add users.
Similarly, cloud computing can scale everything from bandwidth to processing power, ensuring that you can always have the resources needed to support growth. Best of all, when periods of peak demand subside, you can scale back your service plan to save money.
3. Automation and Better Output
Cloud computing brings automation to small businesses, giving you a chance to improve your operations. For a good example of what this means, think about how automation has helped manufacturers dramatically increase their output while cutting other costs.
In particular, automobile manufacturers proved that, by automating repetitive tasks, they can reduce errors and improve quality. Now, cloud computing can do the same thing for your business.
Automating digital tasks eliminates redundant data entry time, reduces errors and saves time. For this reason, you have a real chance to grow your business without expanding your payroll. In the past, only large enterprises could afford this type of technology. Now, it’s available to everyone via the cloud.
4. Better Collaboration and Remote Work
Using cloud computing, your team members can access, edit, and share documents from anywhere, using computers and mobile devices. This means that traditional and remote employees can work together on projects to save time and improve quality.
Look for cloud-based workflow and file sharing apps that track the progress of work. Some studies suggest that collaboration tools alone may give your firm a productivity increase of up to 40 percent or more.
5. Big Data & Analytics
Your business generates mountains of data every day. In the past, only big companies had the computing power to analyze such voluminous data. Now, Big Data apps abound on the marketplace, giving businesses just like yours to uncover important trends in your business.
As you process growing amounts of data from multiple internal and external sources, cloud computing enables quick analysis thanks to powerful data processing capabilities.
6. Better Security and Automatic Updates
If you run all your software from in-house servers, you would be responsible for keeping up with security and maintenance tasks. You would also need to secure and monitor your data network to defend against hackers.
Cloud computing provides better security because your service providers manage all associated maintenance and security tasks on their end. This means that you will always have the latest version of your software in place.
7. Backup and Disaster Recovery
For the most part, setting up an in-house data backup system requires a lot of time and money. Because of this, survivability was a luxury that only large firms enjoyed. For this reason, small companies like yours were out of lock if a hard drive failed or data was lost due to power outages.
Cloud computing makes backups and disaster recovery easy because service providers have redundant systems that guard against hardware failure. Similarly, cloud providers perform routine backups, so you have a good chance of surviving cyber attacks.
In summary, cloud computing offers so many benefits to small businesses that it’s hard to imagine someone would opt for other solutions. In many cases, this has leveled the playing field and given small firms a chance to compete globally for market share.