1. Cost-efficient on money and resources
One of the main advantages of cloud computing is based on the simple notion that renting is better than setting up from scratch. Renting the features you need, with an option to remove or scale up as the company scales further is an option that cloud computing offers. The infrastructural requirements are handled by the cloud providers, which organisations would have to avail in the form of affordable pricing on a monthly or yearly basis.
Not only do cloud computing services save you time and money, but most also work on a pay-as-you-go model. This model ensures that you pay for the services based on usage and frequency, with an option to add services whenever required. Compared to the long haul of setting up resources and spending excessive money on temporary software or hardware, cloud services can provide a cost-effective alternative to help manage your finances better.
2. Cloud-based analytics
The current generation has moved on from the ‘time is money’ statement to a newer one, where ‘data is money’. With the latest technology and best practices, the cloud service provider either offers analysis and correlation of data or real-time analysis of data that can be stored on the cloud.
Cloud analytics forms one of the major benefits of cloud computing as it identifies patterns in data, extracts new insights, and provides a history of performance for a business to analyse. With these analytics, an organisation can check the areas that need work or areas that perform well. Cloud computing also provides the option of analysing data with a third party service. For instance, an organisation with a retail store can check data such as video from a security camera to gain insights on rush hours, footfall during different times of the day and so on.
As we move towards a future of data-driven businesses it makes more sense for organisations to utilise the most of cloud computing analytics to better understand their data and performance.
3. Scalability of cloud solutions
For any organisation, as time passes, its growth trajectory is expected to continue. As a large organisation or as a startup, the requirements differ, but the number of requirements eventually increases.
Rather than invest in hardware as the organisation scales further, cloud computing eliminates the requirement for hardware by offering organisations the resources to scale up or scale down, if required.
So how does cloud computing do it? Instead of physical machines, one of the advantages of cloud computing includes virtual machines that are highly flexible. They can be scaled up or down, and moved to different or multiple servers with the option of shifting workload between different virtual machines.
Using existing cloud computing infrastructure, data storage, processing power, networking and other components can be scaled up or down. This is a major advantage when compared to scaling up physical infrastructure, which can take weeks or months and requires heavy expenditure.
4. Boosting collaborative work
Since the pandemic, there has been a rise in companies going fully remote or organisations collaborating from across the world. There has been a 176% increase in collaboration apps installation on enterprise devices just after the COVID-19 pandemic? The number is expected to be higher today, given the number of organisations that have gone partially or fully remote.
Imagine there's a document that needs editing from multiple people. The frustration of saving the document every time a change is made and sending it across is endless.
With collaboration being one of the benefits of cloud computing, this is no longer a hassle.
In cloud computing, documents and files are kept in a central, cloud accessible location that employees can access at the comfort of their own devices. There is safer access among employees as well as real-time updates which can be accessed within the shared members. There is no delay in updates or changes made. This leads to better collaboration and centralised communication.
Not only does this break down tasks among your organisation, but it also keeps your team organised and boosts productivity.
5. Security of data
One of the challenges at any stage of an organisation or with any software/hardware is the security that is guaranteed along with it. While companies invest in various requirements, a crucial aspect to not be ignored is data security.
Data breaches have become common in the digital world, but rather than having a data breach and being careful after, it's necessary for the organisation to be wary of security-specific challenges. Based on a study by Statista, the top cloud security concerns are data loss and leakage, data privacy/confidentiality, followed by accidental exposure of credentials.
One of the benefits of cloud services is that the cloud host monitors the security of your services, round the clock. Organisations don't have to divide their IT infrastructure separately for looking after security concerns. Cloud computing services bring along the basic features of encryption, authentication, access control and government compliances.
But considering the cost of recovering from a data breach or the possibility of one happening, how can organisations further protect their data on the cloud? To prevent these sophisticated cyberattacks, some tools to be used include,
Multi-factor authentication via passwords, biometrics or a hardware token
Antivirus software and endpoint security
Privileged access management
Cloud access security brokers that monitor activity and enforce security policies
6. Scalable storage and disaster management with the recovery of data
As a physical storage centre is eliminated, one of the benefits of cloud computing is that the storage capacity is almost limitless. Need more storage for data? Or deleting any major files and need to scale down on storage? The cloud enables the modification of storage at any point of your organisational journey.
Expansion of your storage can be requested at any point, with a nominal monthly or yearly fee, based on the cloud provider.
One of the benefits of cloud computing is its reliability, especially in the case of downtime. Downtime is when any hardware IT asset such as a PC, storage drive, service, router or cloud-hosted applications becomes inaccessible and does not work as usual. In such cases, data loss or real-time data may not be backed up in an effective manner.
But that's all traditional IT infrastructure. Cloud computing is the future.
The cloud server is consistently available and does not experience downtime and data loss frequently. Experiencing downtime may result in lost sales, customers, data and overall productivity. Did you know that data loss is estimated to cost US businesses $18.2 billion per year? So, how does switching to cloud-native prevent this cost incurrence for your organisation?
Cloud computing involves a lot of automation and minimises human intervention
Reduction in uptime due to cloud providers' usage of advanced, highly reliable IT system
7. Mobility of cloud services
When was the last time ‘logging in’ to work meant sitting in front of your office desk and turning on the computer? For many, it was probably a couple of years away. With most organisations switching to the cloud, users can access their information from any place, with a stable internet connection. One of the benefits of cloud computing is this mobility, which allows syncing of data across devices used to access the data of the organisation, at all times.
Be it an emergency, the mobility of cloud services ensures that employees don't have to carry any physical infrastructure to respond during emergencies, or from any remote location. With cloud services, organisations can easily acquire, store, retrieve and recover resources from the cloud.
8. Automatic software updates
With traditional IT infrastructure, the labour of regular software updates and managing them was a manual task. One of the advantages of cloud computing is that the cloud service providers ensure regular software and security updates such that the organisations can focus on their core business projects, rather than the updates.
This automation within cloud computing services takes away the manual burden of performing IT updates. Cloud-based applications automatically update and refresh periodically with updated features, which saves time and money for the organisation.
9. Smoother transitions to and within cloud services
As a small scale business or a large enterprise, making a switch from physical infrastructure to the cloud or moving within cloud systems is a process known as cloud migration. The advantages of cloud computing are many, but what about the strategy of migration? Will your applications perform the same? Will optimum performance be guaranteed on the cloud? Is the process of cloud migration going to disrupt your business?
Cloud migration is done in key steps which include designing a strategy to move, assessment of what and when to move, and the actual process of moving your infrastructure to the cloud. Having the right cloud service provider can help you choose the right and optimal migration approach with reliable and robust tools.
10. Sustainability of cloud services
Along with its growing adaptation, cloud services are more environmentally conscious and friendly compared to the waste generated by hardware or other infrastructure. Cloud services address the issue of waste by hosting their data and services for multiple clients with the same hardware. Servers are kept in climate-controlled rooms where surplus energy is not required to maintain the temperature and humidity.
Emphasising how cloud services are environmentally a better choice, a study conducted by Google found how moving common software applications of about 86 million US workers can cut energy use by 87% of IT energy.
This is one of the advantages of the cloud that translates to secondary benefits of cutting down costs and being environmentally friendly. Shifting to the cloud boosts the scope for collaboration, using IoT, AI, ML and other services and boosts productivity.