Could Cloud Help Solve Your Small Business Challenges?

by Maggie McCombs, Content Curator

Small businesses have completely different needs than large businesses and many companies avoid Cloud as though it’s exclusively a large-company asset. The majority (81 percent) of businesses with more than 100 employees are using cloud services, as opposed to the smaller percentage (37 percent) of small businesses currently implementing cloud solutions, says this IDC study, referenced by Forbes.

The truth is, cloud computing is uniquely suited to solving many of your small business challenges. Studies have shown that moving to the Cloud can solve concerns about budgets, proper time allocation and labor production. How? It has been proven to decrease spending, adding valuable labor hours back to your company’s IT team. For example, statistics show that full Cloud implementation saves companies between 15-20 percent of IT labor costs, according to a study by Computer Economics.

Don’t know where to start? Many businesses try using Cloud for storage first and then branch out to other applications, so you might try that before making the complete switch. Whatever you do, make it a resolution to experiment with cloud services this year. Experts predict that cloud computing will catch on eventually: in fact, it’s been predicted that 78 percent of small businesses in the U.S. will have fully adopted Cloud by 2020, according to an Intuit study in the Forbes article. Here are a few reasons why:

1. Leave costly software behind -- When you can accomplish more with less expensive software systems, you’ll reap the dividend. One difference is that Cloud, through virtualization, expands the use of your existing hardware so you can use less hardware overall. According to a fact sheet from Kloudville, 82 percent of teams save money after switching to Cloud.

2. Say goodbye to expensive upgrade and support costs -- When you’re running a small business or laying financial plans for small businesses, you’ll know that every dollar counts. Automatic updates, like you’ll find in cloud computing, eliminate the need for costly upgrade and support plans that drain your budget.

3. Reduce risk of security breaches -- In a Microsoft survey, 62 percent of respondents said their levels of privacy protection increased after Cloud implementation. Although there is still some fear of implementing Cloud, it’s growing more reliable as time goes on. Groups like the Cloud Security Alliance work with businesses to improve standards for organizations using cloud computing systems.

4. Keep up the collaboration -- Teams working behind the scenes understand the vital role of collaboration for effecting change. Social platforms such as Slack fueled the way we communicate on the Cloud and allowed more people to chime in during important conversations.

5. Accessible apps and programs no matter where you go -- With winter weather approaching and a general uptick in remote employees, expect more days where your in-house employees will start working from home. You need a way to sync up from any device or location. Some of the most common examples of cloud computing are often not commonly associated with the Cloud, for example, Twitter, Facebook, web-based email and document-sharing services such as Google Docs.

Hearing first-hand benefits, testimonials and more with real users is the best way to learn how to best use your new Cloud software. Make plans now to sign up for COLLABORATE 18, April 22-26. Save up to 40 percent when you register before March 8.

Curious about the lineup of scheduled education in store for conference attendees this year? The session information is now LIVE and ready for you to start building your agenda. Stay up to date with the latest conference news by following @QuestUserGroup on Twitter and look for the official COLLABORATE 18 hashtag, #C18LV!
Posted by Quest Editor on Jan 18, 2018 10:00 AM EST