Cloud computing has fundamentally changed the way industries and communications work.
Although the technology is relatively new, its impact on businesses has proven to be far-reaching and significant.
It influences the dynamics of competition in the global hardware, software and consulting industry and affects every corner of the business landscape, including organizations of all sizes.
What is Cloud Computing Technology?
Cloud computing is the provision of computing services, including servers, storage, database, network, software, analytics, and intelligence, over the Internet (cloud) to increase resource flexibility, reduce infrastructure costs, and increase capacity.
Why Should Organizations Consider Cloud Computing?
In today’s business environment, more and more Internet-facing devices are being used to improve the availability of data. Thus, knowledge and understanding of cloud technology can open the door to unprecedented innovation and lead to a new industrial revolution for many emerging companies.
Consequently, every company, regardless of industry, needs to store, process, and retrieve business records / data or other information related to business transactions from time to time.
Some of it’s benefits include extra data security, speed and flexibility, automatic business updates and round the clock data access amongst several other benefits.
1)Extra Data Security
Cloud computing technology provides access to a wide range of solutions and applications that enable enterprises to process, store and access data anytime, anywhere, while protecting data from unauthorized access or hacking. Cloud infrastructure provides a variety of services to help keep your corporate data highly secure.
2) Speed and Flexibility
It increases the flexibility and speed of business transactions as costs and development time are significantly reduced. It also gives the industry the flexibility to access external data, allowing quick and easy connections to virtual offices.
3) Automatic Business Updates and Continuity
It provides access to automatic work updates, collaborative efficiency through cloud computing models that enable companies to share their records with different parties to enhance productivity, and business continuity where companies can easily access their data again in the event of natural disasters or power outages thus reducing lost productivity.
4) Round the Clock Data Access
Moving data and services allows businesses to work remotely at their convenience, and they can access their data and services on the cloud 24/7. Moving to the cloud as a service is an efficient way for industries to have their services and data available round the clock.
What Industries are Already Benefiting from It?
In the business landscape, there are a few areas that feel the most significant impact from cloud-related solutions and they are telecom, education, healthcare, manufacturing, insurance, real estate, and finance among many others.
An example of how cloud computing can improve industry productivity is in the health industry.
With so many digital startups emerging in the healthcare space, they have become major milestones in the Nigerian economy, thus the healthcare industry is putting heavy emphasis on customer privacy for obvious reasons.
Its industry handles many personal records, thus, cloud computing provides in healthcare a secure central place to store information. It also helps specialists track and store patients’ health data. Armed with this information, healthcare professionals are using this technology to make great strides in the industry.
The Nigerian government and policy makers have also shown a growing commitment to providing quality healthcare services in Nigeria to help grow the industry through Microsoft cloud services to protect sensitive data information of the various health institutions in the country as well as improve patient and health team interaction, collaboration and operational efficiencies.
Microsoft’s Healthcare Cloud is the first of many industry-specific cloud offerings in the country.
Can Small Businesses also Gain from this Technology?
There is no doubt that while cloud computing plays an important role in the fast, easy and convenient migration of our processes online, every technology, regardless of its strengths, also has certain challenges.
Cloud computing is undoubtedly beneficial for medium and large enterprises, but it is not without its drawbacks, especially for small businesses. The main disadvantage that small businesses can face is the growing demand for broader internal internet bandwidth, smooth internet connections and power outages. Since cloud computing is completely dependent on the Internet, the stability of the internet connection is an important factor for the smooth running of cloud services.
Another weakness is the high cost. Cloud computing is usually cheaper than installing the software in-house, but the initial investment to get the software small businesses need can be quite high. Software costs could rise if small businesses want to move to the cloud with all of their software. Its monthly program fees are also a factor.
It can also incur unexpected costs if businesses have to pay for additional features they don’t need. Hence, the government has a role to play in ensuring uninterrupted power supply, more ICT tools, and efficient and affordable policies to keep the cloud running smoothly for small gains.
Given the aforementioned benefits of cloud computing, companies can take advantage of it and gain momentum in a relatively short time. Companies and industries in Nigeria not yet participating in this chain can join to align the strategic advantages of cloud computing technology with potential trends that are amplifying the impact of more industry players on entrepreneurship and venture capital.