Businesses have been taking advantage of the cloud for some time now, and nine out of ten businesses operating today are using the cloud’s capabilities in some way or another. We feel confident enough to say that the future will certainly involve cloud hosting. Let’s look at some of the statistics and business trends to see how far the cloud has come, and how you could be taking advantage of it if you aren’t already.
Today, The Cloud is a Welcome Component of Business Operations
However, this wasn’t always the case. For quite some time, the assumption was that the cloud simply wasn’t a viable option for business use. Hardware manufacturers saw it as a fad, stating that it didn’t have the security or reliability to last. While we certainly know differently today, business use of the cloud was limited to email hosting for a long time.
Those businesses that did take advantage of the cloud, like those using Amazon Web Services, quickly saw the benefits that using the cloud had to offer. Nowadays, businesses are using the cloud in various ways, either as a subscription-based service that provides data storage, access to software, and/or raw computing power, or hosting a personal cloud onsite for similar reasons. Some businesses do both, as we’ll go over in a moment.
Because of this, the cloud is one of the most relied-on technologies for today’s businesses. Predictions place the cloud computing market’s worldwide value at over $620 billion by year’s end.
Various Types of Cloud are Available to Businesses
While it may seem that, with all of the functionality that the cloud offers, there would be millions of different ways to set it up. Fortunately, the reality is much simpler: there are three.
- The public cloud is one maintained by an external company or vendor that provides services via a publicly-accessible network. As an affordable and accessible option, the public cloud is particularly great for small businesses, particularly those that are just starting up. With public cloud options, you sacrifice control of the platform, but also are not responsible for its upkeep.
- The private cloud is one that a business uses to maintain itself on its own private network. This provides security benefits, as you have control over what applications and devices you use to secure it.
- The hybrid cloud is a sort of compromise between the previous two options, where some needs are fulfilled through public cloud resources, while others are seen to through self-hosted cloud capabilities. Adopting a hybrid cloud strategy gives businesses control over the data they want to keep close to the chest, while still being able to take advantage of affordable tools and other public cloud features, like Software-as-a-Service.
In essence, the relatively limited deployment options the cloud enables can be customized and adjusted to precisely fit the needs that a business may have. This is a big part of why businesses use the cloud to fulfill so many critical business needs and operations, including:
- Line of Business – The cloud is a great option for a business to source line of business software from, despite losing some management capabilities. This drawback is more than compensated for by the benefits that the ubiquitous access to the software provides, and the relative budgeting benefits that cloud software features.
- Productivity – Today, if a software exists, there’s a good chance that it can be obtained as a part of a cloud-based subscription. Two renowned examples are Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace, which both feature well-rounded toolsets and collaborative integrations.
- Communication – The cloud has also enabled new means of business communication, hosted VoIP options superseding the traditional telephone options and conferencing tools that are needed to keep a dispersed team operating as a unit.
- Security – The cloud can also be used to help maintain your network security, in such a way that a business can remain secure while also helping to balance out the management costs a business will be beholden to.
Indeed, the cloud has become integral to a modern business’ operational success, while potentially serving as a cost-saving measure. If you’d like to learn more about what the cloud can help you accomplish with our help, call us at (831) 758-3636 today.