The adoption of cloud computing has seen an exponential increase in the last few years. The current pandemic has accelerated this further, and as a result, cloud services are currently being used by a whopping 88% of UK businesses, according to a recent report. Flexibility, scalability, and affordability are the main drivers behind the quick adoption of cloud services by organisations. With these benefits, the cloud enables businesses to speed up growth and boost resiliency.
While the unprecedented opportunity with the cloud is clear, many businesses still have their apprehensions, queries, and concerns. Let us help simplify cloud computing for you, by answering these fundamental and frequently asked questions.
- What types of cloud are available?
Cloud solutions can be either public or private; most businesses utilise public. A public cloud platform pools resources in data centres and users access them via the internet. Businesses can adopt a hybrid cloud, enabling them to benefit from a public cloud whilst still storing resources in their own local data centre.
- What are the main benefits of adopting cloud?
As mentioned, flexibility, scalability and affordability are the three main benefits of the cloud. Businesses can rely less on physical and on-premise infrastructure when they adopt cloud computing; improving their flexibility, opening them up to remote working and driving down costs of maintenance and hardware. With cloud storage, data can be shared to your team-mates and users sitting across continents securely. Cloud solutions enable businesses to pay only for what they use, meaning they can scale as required without any cost commitments.
- What are the disadvantages?
Though there aren’t many risks or downfalls, some cloud solutions can be complex in pricing and have hidden costs. IT teams may also struggle to adapt to cloud and businesses may need to invest in training for employees to help them navigate a new solution. Finding out the cloud service provider who can provide you with the right tools and training is the key to tackle these challenges.
- How do I know if cloud service is right for my business?
As a flexible and scalable solution, the cloud can work for almost any business; regardless of size and industry type. The key to ensuring that it is right for your particular business is to embed its use within the wider business strategy. Consider your IT requirements and demands, the complexity of migration, and also your growth and development plans. Once you have evaluated how the cloud will work for your organisation now and in the future, you can adopt and/or scale up the use of it.
- What about security?
Cyber attacks are always in the news at the moment, and IT security has never been more important. Cloud solutions like Microsoft Azure put parameters in place to secure and restore data if the worst happens. Features including encryption, identity management and multi-factor authentication provide a layered security approach to keep Microsoft users safe.
- What kind of training does my workforce need to manage and work in the cloud?
Training employees depends entirely on what kind of cloud solutions you decide to adopt. If you are looking to go as far as to rebuild infrastructure in the cloud, then the employees responsible for managing that will need training. Most vendors like Microsoft provide training and certifications to support IT staff as users with understanding and becoming proficient in the solutions. Your Cloud Support Providers can also help you with the training needs.
- How much does cloud cost?
Most modern cloud solutions offer scalable pricing, with schemes in place to lower costs depending on volume. Migrating on-premise solutions to the cloud enables businesses to eradicate maintenance and running costs associated with physical infrastructure. Organisations can also pay as they go, so there’s no need to put down an upfront lump sum if you’re unsure of usage.
- How do I develop a long-term cloud strategy?
Outlining your technical and business objectives is the first step. Identify why the need for the cloud has arisen and how a cloud solution will embed within your business strategy. Once you have aligned the use of cloud within your wider strategy, it becomes easier to map out how you can scale the use of the cloud to support business success.
Adopting cloud offers businesses the ultimate opportunity to modernise and improve their flexibility and resilience, whilst enjoying cost savings.
As Microsoft Silver Partners, we can give you a tailored cloud solution, integrating all your business and training needs. Microsoft Azure offers transparent and competitive cost options, claiming to be five times cheaper than its closest competitor. Read this article to know why you should purchase your services from a Cloud Services Provider rather than directly from a vendor.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how a solution like Azure could work for your business.