Cloud computing is no longer a new and upcoming technology. The industry has grown exponentially, with latest forecasts suggesting the market could be worth as much as $411bn by 2020. Gone are the days this model was an option for businesses to consider. The services the cloud offers are so beneficial, for many businesses they are essential.
However, some are yet to make the move. With online playing such a critical role for businesses, sometimes to the extent that operations completely depend on it, it’s understandable businesses may be unprepared to migrate their existing services into the cloud.
For some, the investment in cloud computing may seem too expensive, the migration process and the possibility of downtime too risky, or perhaps, businesses simply lack the knowledge to recognise the shortcomings in their current IT infrastructure, and the enormous advantages of switching to a cloud setup. Well, if that is indeed the case, this blog post aims to help you spot these signs and understand how your business could benefit from adopting a cloud service.
First and foremost, switching to a cloud platform can be hugely cost effective. So, one big indicator that your current model is holding you back is if it’s draining money. If your the current IT infrastructure doesn’t suit the business model, then it will lack the functionality you need and will cost you more money to achieve your objectives.
Through cloud services and software, expensive and repetitive tasks can be removed, automated or streamlined, freeing-up entire departments to concentrate on more value driving activities. You’ll no longer require the same levels of manual input or administrative support. And of course, outsourcing your hosting requirements removes the large up-front expense of purchasing the physical infrastructure yourself. These overheads can rise dramatically overtime as resources require updates, maintenance and replacement, with further lump-sum payments needed to be to match business growth.
With spending on maintaining, managing and updating IT infrastructure removed, this allows money to be invested into resource management and optimisation technologies, also leading to further saving and improved performance in the future. It’s also worth mentioning cloud hosting’s ability to be fully scalable. The ability to increase and decrease resources based on usage means you only pay for what you use. This removes the need for any future investment to meet business demands.
Notably poor performance of your current IT infrastructure is another big suggestion it’s preventing your business from reaching its full potential. Inconsistent availability, slow processing, constant bugs or errors – do any of these sound familiar? The symptoms may be obvious, but the reasoning behind them may be more complex.
Constantly keeping hardware up to date can be an expensive task. So, if corners have been cut in the past, a combination of old and new technologies can result in poor integration. Similarly, on a software front, a combination of patchwork solutions can result in poor performance. However, a cloud model with the right provider can remove these responsibilities and ensure your business is supported by robust, high spec infrastructure and purpose designed solutions, maintained by experts.
For example, Secura’s Virtual Private Cloud is built on ‘evergreen’ infrastructure, meaning that Secura takes responsibility for replacing servers and firewalls etc. every few years with new models to ensure customer platforms are running on latest generation infrastructure.
This may be harder to recognise, especially if businesses are unaware of the benefits a cloud platform could provide. However, one tell-tale sign is if business productivity and profitability is notably poor compared to cloud enabled competitors. One of the benefits of a cloud adoption strategy is that workflows and business processes can become more easily streamlined and optimised. Decision making can become more rapid and data driven, through easy access of information. Accessibility through the cloud enables business operations to be accessed from anywhere, anytime, improving business productivity and encouraging business growth.
Cloud As A Service
It’s also worth mentioning here the different types of cloud computing services and their benefits.
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) can be seen as the least ‘managed’ solution, as only the cloud-based infrastructure is provided – saving the end user the investment and ongoing cost of ownership.
Platform as a Service (PaaS) not only provides the infrastructure and hosted environment but also a framework enabling the end user to build and tailor applications.
The most commonly utilised is Software as a Service (SaaS), solutions delivered via the internet that enable the end user to access cloud-based applications, often needing no implementation.
All of these cloud service models can be hugely beneficial to businesses and should be considered, depending on the business requirements. To find out more about these services read our ‘Cloud Services: SaaS, IaaS and PaaS Explained’ blog post.
If IT infrastructure experiences security failures, it can be disastrous for businesses. Security breaches can be extremely financially damaging and the cost of monitoring the threat landscape can also be extensive. Some industries are of course more prone to cyber-attacks than others, but often security failures result from human error through lack of knowledge or proper training.
As mentioned earlier, with carefully selected cloud services and the expertise of their providers, you can improve the integrity of your IT infrastructure and software, with possible vulnerabilities are highlighted and patched before they become a problem. Cloud hosting providers for example, should have tried and tested security plans and monitoring in place to ensure your system’s security is no longer a concern.
We hope this blog post has been helpful and given an insight into which signs to look out for if you think your business could benefit from adopting a cloud solution. If you’re still unsure, or have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to get it touch.
Image credit: PureSolution/Shutterstock.com
Matthew is Secura's content specialist, producing gripping, emotionally complex, edge of your seat, cloud hosting articles and videos.
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