The Basics Of Cloud Computing Services
Cloud computing is one of the most widely-used catch phrases in technology today. It may sound like a complex subject that requires expert knowledge to appreciate, but the concept itself is really very simple. Cloud computing involves a workload shift from the user's premises to a remote location. The employees stay where they are, but the computing hardware and software that they use is moved off premises. Businesses sign up with a cloud computing service provider by paying a monthly fee and can access all the software they need for their business applications over the internet. The benefits of this system are enormous, especially for the small and medium sized business user.
How The Cloud Cuts Costs
With an on premises IT setup, the user needs to buy servers, storage arrays and associated hardware, all of which are very expensive. And as the business grows and IT applications become more sophisticated, more powerful servers will need to be installed. Additional storage capacity will need to be created to cope with backup and disaster recovery requirements. An investment will have to be made in creating dedicated climate controlled space to house the equipment. The power needed for the IT setup can be very costly, especially with utility costs increasing. Power back up in the form of a diesel generator may be needed. Licensing fees for the software being used and periodic upgrades will have to be paid on an ongoing basis. A dedicated staff will be required to maintain the hardware and software and resolve problems. All of this adds up to a large initial investment and high ongoing operational costs. With cloud computing all these costs are shared among the subscribers, so that the monthly fees are very economical. And there is no capital investment required.
How The Cloud Increases Efficiency
The cloud computing service provider will have a dedicated server and data storage facility with climate control, power backup, and a dedicated hardware and software staff available 24x7 to ensure maximum uptime and smooth operations. In case the user has any problems, expert help is just a phone call away. Since the quality of service provided is the key to cloud computing success, service providers will ensure that the best software, with the latest upgrades and patches are installed on their servers with no user involvement or cost. This means that users will be able to focus on their core business operations without the distraction of having to manage an IT operation. Another benefit of cloud computing is that staff in remote locations can access data and applications from anywhere and at any time, as long as they have an internet connection. Also, cloud computing offers high levels of security, which means that the risk of virus attacks and data theft are minimized. The built in redundancies of the system make data backup simple and disaster recovery both quick and easy.
When the efficiency of cloud computing is added to the financial savings offered, the decision to switch to the cloud becomes an easy one. It is one area where cutting costs and reducing management actually result in greater efficiency and profit.