The promise of cloud computing is tantalizing: Forget managing servers and data centers and dealing with the delicate and costly issues of technical support, software updates, and computer hazards … and focus on your business. It sounds easy and inexpensive and is the most popular of today’s technology trends. But is so much beauty true?
What is known as digital transformation in companies – the adjustment of an organization to better relate to new customers and audiences in today’s environment – is not really a technology but a decision that leads to adopting certain key technologies for survival. And one of the technologies that make possible this transformation, perhaps the highest adoption rate in the world of business in recent years, is cloud computing.
IDC’s latest estimate indicates that at least half of global IT spending will go this year to investments in cloud computing. And it is calculated that, in a period of five years, 43% of the computing capacity of companies worldwide will be hosted in public cloud services and 78% in hybrid services; that is, a combination of public clouds and private clouds.
The document specifies that the difference between a classic shared external hosting and a cloud computing type hosting lies in the fact that the latter is sometimes distinguished by the provision of resources dynamically or automatically, without human intervention by the host. .
The cloud, or cloud computing, exists in different forms. Each with advantages according to the needs of each company. SaaS, PaaS, IaaS: the choice is yours. You still need to know the specifics of each system.
IaaS: outsource your hardware IT infrastructure
What is meant by the provision of IaaS (infrastructure as a service) services? This service concerns the provision of abstract computing resources (CPU power, memory, storage, etc.). The IaaS model allows the company to have potentially virtualized outsourced resources. It thus retains control over the operating system, storage, deployed applications as well as certain network components (firewalls for example).
With this solution, the company manages the server middleware and application software. The cloud provider on the other hand manages the server hardware, the operating system, the virtualization layers, the storage, and the networks.
PaaS: outsource your hardware infrastructure and middleware applications
With this solution, the company does not have control of the underlying technical infrastructure, managed and controlled by the service provider (network, servers, OS? Storage, etc.). However, it has control of the applications deployed on the platform.
In this context, the cloud provider manages the platform for running the company’s applications, consisting of servers, basic software and infrastructure.
SaaS: the all-inclusive formula
What should you expect with providing SaaS services? This service concerns the provision by a provider of applications hosted on a shared platform. The company does not have control of the underlying technical infrastructure. The service provider transparently manages all the technical aspects requiring IT skills. One of the advantages of this solution is that it does not require any investment or infrastructure costs, these posts being taken care of by the service provider.
The different cloud models and their advantages
Depending on its needs or its security requirements, a company can choose a public cloud, a private cloud, or a hybrid cloud. Each model has its own characteristics. As part of a public cloud, servers and applications are shared. This solution is particularly advantageous in terms of costs.
The private cloud is generally preferred in companies that have very high requirements, even constraints, in terms of security. Indeed, this solution is based on the individualization of resources and services. The company can choose a third path, namely the hybrid cloud. In this case, the company combines the resources of the public cloud and the private cloud. It thus benefits from great flexibility and infrastructure adapted to its needs.
Now that we have presented the cloud in all its forms, it’s time to get to the heart of the matter. Why is this technology attracting more and more companies? Accessibility, flexibility, saving time and money… What are the advantages of the cloud?
The benefits of the cloud
One of the great advantages of the cloud is its flexibility. Indeed, it is possible to evolve a cloud infrastructure according to the needs of the company. The capacities subscribed as part of its subscription are adjustable to cope with peaks of activity. The cloud makes it possible to support the development of an activity. The company is freed from the constraints related to its IT equipment, particularly in terms of computing power, storage space or even the number of users.
Agility and accessibility
Among the advantages of the cloud, it is also important to mention agility and accessibility. Cloud solutions are accessible at any time, from any medium, via a simple internet connection. The cloud is a real plus for increasing the agility and mobility of its employees. Constant access to services makes it possible to improve collaboration with colleagues or partners outside the company. In the same vein, nomadic and remote work is also facilitated by the deployment of the cloud. Real-time data sharing enables real productivity gains. Microsoft 365 for charities is a cloud solution that offers these benefits to nonprofits and their staff and volunteers.
Speed and simplicity
Among the benefits of the cloud, don’t forget the rapid deployment and ease of integration. Indeed, the implementation of a cloud solution is done in a short time. The service is available quickly. Once the installation is complete, cloud applications are generally easy for employees to adopt.
Cloud and security: an impossible association?
Security has long been one of the biggest barriers to cloud adoption in businesses. But since then, they have realized the benefits of the cloud, especially when it comes to protecting their data. Today it is possible for cloud solution providers to put forward solid arguments to prove the level of security of their tools.
Basic Advantages of Cloud Computing for your Company
- Cost reduction
The company dispenses with investments in its own IT infrastructure and software licenses. To start working it is not necessary to install any special type of hardware. On the contrary, acquiring a technological infrastructure of its own is much more expensive and not all businesses can afford it. Why? because it is not only about technological acquisition, but about everything that this entails: maintenance costs, energy, technical personnel, etc.
It has been shown that management from the cloud business can save between 20% and 30%. On the other hand, the company can focus exclusively on its activity without having to spend time and resources on technological maintenance, which can sometimes be extremely expensive. The SMEs lose up to one month work year by the repair teams that fail, a clarifier fact that gives us an idea of what you can bring to a business maintenance costs.
- Mobility: Access from any device and anywhere
Wherever you are, you have access to all the company’s information. The mobility has become a competitive advantage for both work or serves clients from anywhere, to promote the labor flexibility of a worker who can organize all their activities without relying on an office. Simply having an Internet connection is enough to access applications or information. Additionally, documents are hosted in the cloud, not on individual computers, so different users can share or work on them without physically being together. According to different studies, companies that take advantage of mobility and collaborative work , increase their income by 50% on average.
- Payment for use and expense under control
The computing cloud is based on models of pay per use . The company contracts only the services that it needs at any time and they have the possibility of adjusting the expenses to their real needs. The client adds or removes services depending on what they require, avoiding having to invest in their own infrastructure that would become obsolete over time . In other words, pay for what you need and when you need it . If certain days of the month require more capacity or data storage, simply expand your services online and instantly. And if, for example, the company changes the number of workers or its structure, it only has to add or subtract functions .
- Respect for the environment
Although cloud computing is almost always talked about in terms of profitability or productivity, this point is also very important. Using the cloud reduces a company’s carbon footprint by saving resources that go from being stored in physical components to being virtual. This supposes a considerable saving in energy consumption, which translates into important benefits for the environment. Virtualization can reduce energy consumption and its pollution levels by more than 60%.
- You don’t need ‘the latest’ in computers
Computers with smaller hard drives, less memory and processors can be used. For example, in this context, a computer , not even need a CD or DVD, it does not require installing programs and data or documents not need to be saved on the hard disk. In addition, with fewer programs hogging the computer’s memory, the PC will perform much better because it has fewer processes loaded.
Unlike traditional computing, in which any failure in the PC can destroy all the data, in this environment, if the computer disk stops working that would not affect your data . And putting something less “drastic”, if the case in which the computer freezes simply occurs , all the data will remain in the cloud and fully accessible from another device. Regarding information backups , it is clear that they are vital for any business, but what is the reality? that not everyone does them, or at least not on a regular basis. In the cloud computing environment, the user does not worry about backups because the cloud performs them automatically and with secure encryption, proof against any hacker attack.
- You are no longer tied to a PC
Very important: ” do not be a slave to your computer or an operating system .” With the cloud you are no longer tied to a PC. That is, you can change computers without fear, because applications and data will continue to be in the cloud . Your documents, data and applications are the same no matter what computer or device you are using to access them. Also today you can use computers with Windows, Linux, Mac, tablets or smartphones of all kinds