‘Cloud computing’ is a term used to describe the sharing of files or data through the internet, rather than storing it on an internal server. There are many, many benefits to cloud computing and businesses across the world are realising these each day.
But, realistically, what should you use the cloud to do? Here are some ideas to get you started, if you want to integrate the cloud into your business but don’t know how:
Your business might have its own server, but you may find this more trouble (and money) than its worth. Try using the cloud for your emails – use Gmail or Yahoo and get a great deal of storage and a reliable email method which is accessible from anywhere.
Want to edit the same document but someone else is working on it? Sometimes companies use the cloud to edit spreadsheets and databases. Say, for instance, you have a contact database which you currently store in an Excel document on your server. When you want to edit it, the document may signal a ‘read only’ sign, which is highly irritating. However, with cloud computing, using services like Google Drive or the SkyDrive file editing system, you can edit in real time, even when someone else has the document open!
Try programs like Thru if you’re seeking a reliable file sharing system (more on their ‘ftp alternative’ service here) . Thru gives you the ability to share files with anyone, anywhere, and of any file size and type. You can send something across to the cloud in an instant, allowing people working away from the office to access it just as quickly. No longer do you need to send large email attachments when you have a service like this! This is ideal when working in a group on a project, when normally you would have all had to meet in person. Now you can work together but from your own separate locations. It encourages a more productive workforce!
So, what are the benefits of using the cloud?
There are many things you can do when using the cloud, with just a few named above. The main benefits of the cloud includes:
-- Reducing your costs – which is important for every business in the current tough economic times. Read more about how the cloud reduces costs here.
Acting flexibly to suit your specific company needs – there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach with the cloud, you can adapt it to how you need it to work for you and your business.
-- It’s greener – the cloud uses less energy than your own on-site server would. That’s better in anyone’s books!
-- Far greater choice- there are many apps and programs you can use to benefit your business.
-- You can work more productively, as can your staff.
Cloud computing is certainly taking the world by storm – will your business be next to enjoy the benefits?