Cloud technology is a buzzword that you hear far too often today and it can sometimes get a bit overwhelming given the varied usage everywhere. I am going to break it down to the simplest unit, when we talk about cloud computing we are always referring to computing being done on servers that run in a virtualized environment; i.e., we take a bunch of powerful dedicated servers in a network and use software to compartmentalize it into many smaller machines. The end user sees these smaller machines as dedicated machines and indeed as far as he is concerned they are because the resources of these smaller virtual machines are dedicated to running his systems; however, the advantages afforded to him are immense.
Forbes has predicted that around 83% of enterprise workloads will be in the cloud by the year 2020, gone are the days when companies used to invest truckloads of money on dedicated server setups at data centers, more and more enterprises are smartly shifting to cloud-based hosting due the sheer benefits afforded by the economies of scale. let's go ahead and explore 5 reasons why you too should consider this seriously.
This is the perhaps the most obvious benefit, they say “a penny saved is a penny earned” and so, It makes good sense to try and minimize capital expenditure on hardware. Buying expensive servers and installing them is obviously a tedious chore, now, add to this the cost of maintenance, replacement due to wear and tear, upgrading obsolete hardware, it all adds up to quite a bit. A significant amount of time and skilled labour is spent in the above-mentioned activities, time and effort that could have been better spent elsewhere.
The cloud model especially shines when it comes to lowering technology costs. Since the entire cloud infrastructure is being managed professionally by the providers, companies could make do with a skeletal IT infra team and thus reduce their expenses. While Cloud Computing costs would typically depend on the subscription model chosen, it usually is just a fraction of what would normally be spent on hosting on-premise. Most cloud providers will proactively monitor your hardware, manage server updates, minimize downtime at little to no extra cost, so in short there will be significant cost savings and greater productivity accrued by adopting the cloud model.
In this era of cyberculture data security is of paramount importance, given the sheer amount of proliferating DOS attacks, ransomware and other cyber crimes, safeguarding IP has become a herculean task. It is a daunting yet imperative measure for enterprises to invest in various kinds of firewalls and other devices to safeguard their systems, security audits are now considered the holy grail of the modern industry. This is another area where the cloud model can actually assist since the service providers manage dozens of compliance programs in their infrastructure, parts of your security compliance has already been completed.
Most cloud platforms these days offer advanced features such as automated data backups, data encryption, remote mirroring, this secures data and ensures safety even in the event of a catastrophic failure. The cloud infrastructure team installs effective safeguards in place to help protect data privacy, this in itself should alleviate some security concerns. Most cloud providers also offer some form of tools for companies to make sure that their services are set up correctly.
In short, security on the cloud is a lot easier to manage than security for your dedicated server setup.
Scaling on the fly
This one is a no-brainer, a major benefit of migrating to the cloud is the scalability with minimal risks. It would be a trivial effort for companies to add or subtract computational power/memory/storage, this is a flexibility that simply isn’t available when you are stuck with traditional hardware-based hosting. When client requirements and market demands are dynamic it makes sense for businesses to have the ability to upscale or downscale accordingly. In fact, it is this unique ability of the cloud model to rapidly acclimatize itself to the evolving needs of the enterprise that has actually made it quite popular with CIOs globally.
An important thing to consider is that adding resources/removing them is done via a point and click interface with literally no downtime, compare this to having to actually shut down your servers to upgrade them or clone them, according to me this is perhaps the key advantage in the adoption of the cloud model. If you are like me and have actually gone through the whole rigmarole of co-ordinating downtimes and waiting for services to be up for what seems like an eternity, you will really love this feature!.
Consolidation of resources
I still recollect the “good old” days when my team had to make visits to datacenters to make certain deployments, boy, was it uncomfortable. The whole labyrinthine maze of servers one had to navigate to get to the servers was simply mind numbing. Engulfed in a sea of buzzing steel towers, we sometimes had to squeeze ourselves into constrained spaces and perform operations with distinct discomfort, this thankfully now a thing of the past!. Ever since our clients moved their servers to a leading cloud hosting company, we no longer need to grapple with painful physical visits, what's even better is that all our servers can be easily managed in just one location.
Enterprises typically want to consolidate servers and server locations in an attempt to reduce costs and increase efficiency. With cloud hosting, companies don’t really need to worry about the nitty-gritty of co-hosting servers in proximal networks as that engineering problem is already expertly tackled by the cloud provider. All in all, this helps companies focus better on achieving their core objectives without being distracted by the complexity of infrastructural issues.
Remote workspaces are nothing but desktops in the cloud, employees can log in to them via remote locations. Their machines can be auto-backed up regularly and it gives them complete control over their workspace. This is immensely useful, especially, when you have remote teams working on projects. Studies conducted globally have found that flexible work practices are helping companies across the globe boost employee productivity, increase revenue generation and reduce attrition. There is a lot of attention being focused on attracting and retaining young talent, to this end offering flexible work locations becomes simpler when you opt for cloud workspaces. Remote workspaces are an ergonomic alternative to physical hardware in the office and as time passes, it will get increasingly common.
We have seen the benefits of moving to the cloud, now a major decision like this is bound to have some teething issues and plenty of repercussions as well, but you ought to consider that the benefits in doing this far outweigh the disadvantages, in order to keep up with the Joneses of the world you sometimes need to make decisions that will forever shape the future of your enterprise and this is one of those things you need to consider doing to stay ahead of the curve.
We have seen the advantages of moving your infrastructure to the cloud, now a major decision like this is bound to have some teething issues and plenty of other repercussions as well. The one thing you might want to keep in mind is that the apparent benefits in doing this far outweigh the disadvantages. In order to keep up with the Joneses of the world you sometimes need to make decisions that will forever shape the future of your enterprise. This is one of those things, moving to the cloud is necessary for you to stay ahead of the curve.