Cloud migration is moving the digital operations of your businesses to the cloud. Cloud computing enables the delivery of many computing services ranging from applications to storage to processing power, essentially over the internet on a pay-per-use basis. In addition, the technology allows businesses to rent access to applications and storage hosted by a service provider instead of accessing the traditional on-premises hardware located within the confines of a physical office. Data is thus accessed and managed online, and cloud servers replace local drives and servers. The employees get to access the cloud-powered workplace collaboration platform to manage their day-to-day work.
Though cloud computing has been taking the world by storm of late, none other than Prof. John McCarthy decades ago prophesied the idea of its possibilities. One of the founders of the discipline of Artificial Intelligence, Professor John McCarthy, said, “Computing may someday be organized as a public utility just as the telephone system is a public utility,” at MIT’s centennial celebration way back in 1961. Salesforce has popularized the idea since its inception in 1999, and other tech giants like Amazon, Microsoft, and Google followed suit with their respective clouds, AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud, among other players.
Covid19 forced several companies to move their business operations to the cloud to enable their workforce to access data across geographical boundaries. Post pandemic, there has been a steady increase in the number of businesses that have embraced cloud technologies. Cloud Computing Trends: Flexera 2022 State of the Cloud Report says that their respondents expect their cloud spending to increase by 29% over the next 12 months.
The pandemic-induced lockdown and remote working fast-tracked the adoption of cloud computing and digital transformation, a fact affirmed by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella:
“We’ve seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months. From remote teamwork and learning to sales and customer service to critical cloud infrastructure and security, we work alongside customers every day to help them adapt and stay open for business in a world of remote everything.”
Yes, Cloud computing brings many benefits that businesses across diverse industries cannot afford to ignore. Here are a few:
1) Cloud technologies are flexible and scalable
Flexibility and scalability are among the core benefits of cloud technologies. When you move your business operations to the cloud, you can scale up and down your cloud computing services to meet the ever-changing demands of your business, thus saving you the cost of redundant resources. A scalable cloud solution lets a company make appropriate and cost-effective responses to increase or decrease traffic or workload demands, thus allowing it to stay agile and competitive. Besides you need to pay only for the services you avail. With on-premises systems, you may have to buy additional hardware equipment to increase capacity, while scaling up is more economically viable in the cloud.
Besides, you may have to keep paying money for the redundant resources the additional on-premises hardware consumes once the load spike subsides. Also, you have the absolute choice to maximize the value of your on-premise IT infrastructure by opting for a hybrid cloud wherein you get to migrate part of your workloads to the cloud while maintaining the rest of your workloads on legacy systems you already have, which can be moved to the cloud in future. The global presence enjoyed by the cloud platforms enables you to run your workloads closer to where your employees are. Your employees have the absolute freedom to access their virtual office from anywhere.
2) Cloud migration promotes collaboration
One of the most significant advantages of cloud computing is that it presents your business with a workplace collaboration platform with various collaboration tools to suit your business needs. These workplace collaboration tools in the cloud environment endow your business with capabilities that facilitate communication and sharing beyond traditional methods. For example, cloud technologies enable uninterrupted workflows through applications having seamless file-sharing capabilities wherein geographically dispersed teams get to work together more efficiently. In addition, real-time updates can be made, which can be accessed by team members across multiple geographies, thus easing effective communication.
Virtual teams increasingly depend on communication and collaboration tools in the cloud environment to get tasks done. As lack of collaboration can give rise to workplace failures, companies are increasingly investing in online tools designed for team collaboration in the current scenario of remote work. The cloud-powered collaborative tool market includes many offerings like file-sharing apps, video conferencing apps, online task management platforms, etc.
Workplace collaboration platforms help track each task involved in completing a project. It eases reporting while working with large teams or multiple departments. Project tracking and reporting have never been easier! These workplace collaboration platforms also help store all critical files and documents in one secure place.
An ideal workplace collaboration platform will have the capabilities to integrate with existing legacy systems. A new workplace collaboration platform needn’t necessarily make your current systems obsolete. You always have the liberty to move parts of your business processes to the cloud or embrace the technology for your entire business process. You must rightly choose an ideal workplace collaboration platform that seamlessly integrates your existing systems and programs. Seamless cloud integrations are affected, thanks to proper communication channels and a better understanding of processes among teams across multiple departments like IT, operations, security, etc. Thus, secure and sustainable collaborative management of teams across all departments.
3) Cloud-based disaster recovery solutions keep data secure
Cloud has a variety of disaster recovery solutions in multiple formats that help small and medium businesses save time, cost less, and roll up third-party services and expertise as required.
4) Reduce capital expenditure
Investing in cloud technologies reduces the cost of in-house hardware. The pay-as-you-use model spares you from investing in applications and programs you don’t use. Not needing to incur huge expenses toward buying and maintaining server hardware and paying huge electricity bills would be an added advantage. You also stand to save more money by way of office rent if you decide to move your entire business operations to a cloud suite.
5) Ensure business continuity
Your data stored in the cloud is backed up and stored in safe and secure cloud servers. This prevents any loss of data caused by natural calamities or power failures. In addition, your data is accessible from anywhere, thus enabling the continuity of your business processes without any loss of productivity and reducing your downtime.
The benefits of cloud computing are much more. The rapid pace of the tech revolution triggered by the pandemic has changed how and where people work. People, data, and technology drive the digital transformation in today’s business world. The evolution of both technology and culture is required for successful and sustainable digital transformation. Remote work has a proven track record of increased productivity post covid. This has inspired more businesses to adopt workplace collaboration platforms to enable their dispersed employees to leverage cloud technologies to collaborate more with each other. Cloud computing vendors keep promoting the technology as an agent of digital transformation! Moving to the cloud will redefine your business processes, make them more robust, and catalyze business change. The transition from legacy systems and cloud adoption are the logical steps that will culminate in your digital transformation.