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Original Date Posted: Aug 21, 2012
By Selena Lepley

Businesses use to rely upon on-site servers to house their networks, for the storage of data. Today, many businesses are trading in these warm and hard-to-maintain server rooms, opting instead for the use of a cloud. Cloud computing is a growing branch of computer systems technology that allows for the storage of information and programs on a digital cloud, or a site located at a distance from the business. More and more businesses are buying into this set up, aware of the benefits associated with it. As this subsection of computer networking continues to expand, expect to see even more benefits produce positive changes in businesses that take advantage of this cloud computing options in 2012.

1. Simple Backups

For businesses, backing up their computer systems is vital. Instead of moving through the often complex process of backing up a system using now largely antiquated methods, cloud computing users can create backups almost instantly, ensuring that they don’t forgo this important step in an attempt to save time. Not only do programs like this make it easy for businesses to create their backups, they also make it exceptionally easy for the business to access the backup when they need to, allowing them to recover seamlessly from a system crash and get back to work more rapidly.

2. Reduced Costs

Servers are expensive to build and maintain. While there are costs associated with the use of clouds, these costs are commonly substantially less than the cost of server creation and upkeep. Because they will not have to invest as much money in server building and maintaining, businesses that elect to use clouds can place this money in other places, perhaps upgrading local hardware or even giving employees raises.

3. Collaboration Assistance

In many businesses, workers work together to create and edit documents. Through a cloud, these workers can work cooperatively more easily. Regardless of how close to each other these workers may be, they can all access the same files, stored remotely on the cloud, and make the necessary changes, often even at the same time. This access-from-anywhere ability shaves minutes and hours off of the time it takes to complete a task, increasing worker productivity, a financially beneficial thing for the business as a whole.

4. Scalability

Cloud computing allows you to scale up or down your usage as necessary. In many cloud-computing set-ups, companies can pay for only the cloud space they take up, allowing them to avoid paying for storage space they aren’t really using. This pay-for-what-you-need set up is good for businesses’ bottom lines.

5. Reduced Maintenance Costs

Unlike when businesses depend upon on-site storage, when using clouds for storage the companies will not need to pay for maintenance. Generally, all of the cost associated with maintaining the cloud is factored into the company’s contract with the cloud provider. Because the cost is already factored in, it is not variable, but instead consistent. This can be helpful to businesses, as if they are forced to pay for their own system maintenance they may find themselves struggling with an unexpected – and often large – system repair bills.

Cloud computing offers a collection of benefits to businesses, many of which have ties to a business’ financial health. Because of the seriousness of these benefits, businesses are remiss not to check out cloud computing and at least explore their options, determining whether the cloud computing benefits that many businesses reap could be useful to them in building their businesses and increasing the sustainability of their unique business models.

 

About The Author
Selena double majored in technology and journalism. She now works for the Sacramento Bee and blogs about technology advancements in her spare time.

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