Why your organisation should be embracing cloud computing
The decision on whether to embrace cloud computing is something that many businesses are grappling with. Is it better to pay an upfront software license fee or an ongoing subscription fee? Is it more secure to store data on an on-site server rather than a virtual machine in another country? Will your business be disrupted by unexpected software changes, or will you be limited by not having the full-functionality in an older version?
There’s no denying that switching to cloud computing requires a shift in thinking for many businesses. It can mean changing your processes, operating procedures, and more. But it can also free up capital, enhance collaboration, and create more opportunities for innovation.
In this post, we’ll look at some of the key benefits of cloud computing.
Subscription versus upfront fee
One of the first things many businesses do is compare the price of on-premise software with the recurring subscription cost of software-as-a-service (SaaS). If you are making this comparison, make sure you account for the other costs associated with on-premise software. These costs include, but aren’t limited to:
- Support costs – typically around 20% of the license cost
- Hardware costs
- Staff for maintenance and support
- Network monitoring
Many of these costs are either unnecessary with cloud computing or are built into the ongoing subscription fee. For many businesses and applications, moving to cloud platforms and SaaS results in a lower total cost of ownership.
Less money spent just on supporting and maintaining existing systems means more potential for allocating budget to new systems, new products, and new service offerings.
Large scale IT implementations are renowned for taking longer than planned. On-premise software implementations are regularly railroaded by changing business prioritites over the year or longer a typical implementation can take. In contrast, most cloud or SaaS deployments can be live in as little as one month. There’s usually less coding, more flexible integration options, and can scale as your business needs evolve.
Look around at the number of businesses still using old versions of Windows and Microsoft Office. Is it because they don’t want their staff to access updated tools and increased functionality? No, it’s because the pain of managing the upgrade, securing budget, losing hours/days/weeks of productivity is just too great. Moving to a cloud computing model can eliminate this pain.
Always the latest version
Technology has always moved at a fast pace, and today, it’s quicker than ever. With traditional software license models, the technology immediately ages and can quickly become out-of-date. Upgrades can be time-intensive and costly, and new functionality often is only released on a pre-determined upgrade schedule.
Cloud computing and SaaS turns this approach on its head. You’ll always have the most recent version, with all the features as and when they become available.
Collaborating – anywhere, any time
Of course, one of the most attractive features of cloud computing for both businesses and employees is the increased workplace flexibility that the technology enables. Being able to access Office 365 files (or other SaaS and cloud products) from any location on the device of your choosing is allowing employees to create ways of working that suits them and their lifestyle.
Storing documents in the cloud also enables collaboration – without the version control headaches. Forget emailing a Word document to five people for feedback, consolidating their various (and at times contradictory) changes, and the challenges that come from Suzy having a different version of the software to Bob.
Instead, you get one document that multiple people can access and work on – even at the same time. There’s one version of the truth, saving time, effort, heartache and money.
Ready to fly in the cloud?
GreenDot is a certified Microsoft partner, working with some of Australia’s largest organisations to get maximum value from cloud computing platforms including Office 365 deployments. We’ll help you to define your business goals and demonstrate how cloud computing can help make those goals a reality. To find out how we can help you, call us today on 1300 80 11 88.