Businesses around the world are recognizing the benefits that cloud computing can offer in terms of monetary savings and streamlining core functions. While comprehensive IT infrastructures may have been available exclusively to enterprises in the past, the expansion and availability of cloud computing offer small businesses some of the functions that have long eluded them due to budgetary constraints.
But the fact that SMBs can now use of many of the services that bigger companies have been using for years does not put large organizations at any sort of disadvantage. Enterprises are adopting cloud solutions in huge numbers as well, an indication that the technology can be effective and versatile no matter a user's size or financial resources.
Statistics show widespread strength in the cloud sector
Sales-oriented software distributor SteelBrick recently conducted a survey among 130 of its clients, 80 percent of which work within the high-tech sector. The source said that the respondents' verticals range from cloud vendors to big data analysts and telecommunications providers.
The survey found that 72 percent of high tech companies reported seeing an increase in year-over-year sales volume figures, and 42 percent said that their sales cycles grew faster over the same period of time. These figures are indicative of expansion in the overall tech industry, but also specifically within the cloud sector. Since many of SteelBrick's clients are cloud vendors, it can be deduced that these organizations are seeing increases in sales, which contribute to the growth experienced within the group made up of respondents who identified their businesses as tech-oriented.
How SMBs are improving their IT systems by using the cloud
As was previously alluded to, enterprises are no longer the only ones that can benefit from advanced and comprehensive IT infrastructure. Cloud services have made streamlined IT functions more accessible to small businesses, and SMBs are taking advantage.
Business 2 Community contributor Esther Levine wrote that cloud solutions are highly customizable, and can be tailored to small business' individual requirements. She noted that collaboration on projects, e-commerce and tedious operational functions are three of the most prevalent solutions that SMBs are implementing. In addition, employees at these can now complete tasks from remote locations, rendering their organizations more flexible and efficient.
"Automation can reduce the risk of human error."
Levine stressed the importance of cloud automation for small businesses, stating that it can save owners and workers valuable time. Certain daily operations can be extremely time-consuming, so eliminating the need for manual intervention in ordinary processes can be beneficial. In addition, automation can reduce the risk of human error, which can improve the quality of the system overall.
Perhaps the most important area of cloud computing that SMBs can utilize is security. Levine said that small businesses often have extensive cybersecurity requirements for their sensitive data, but limited budgets to commit to such expenditures. Most of these companies do not employ full-time IT staff, so ensuring the continue security of an organization's data is nearly impossible without the cloud.
Fortunately, Levine pointed out that cloud providers often offer comprehensive security strategies, and also manage the systems on an ongoing basis. Since everything is based in the cloud, subscribing to such a service is inherently less expensive - and less difficult to maintain - than investing in an on-premise security system. This can be of substantial benefit to small businesses, as they can now access enterprise-grade cybersecurity strategies without emptying their bank accounts.
The cloud can offer multiple benefits to organizations of any size. The ability to streamline operational processes and increase flexibility is vital in the contemporary business climate.