Cloud Computing: Over the last few weeks we have all seen the impact of the current Covid-19 lockdown on our behaviours, both as individuals and as businesses. Many individuals are either furloughed or working from home with most school aged kids also home based. This has resulted in significant increases in online shopping, online gaming and streaming services, with Netflix for example adding 16 million new subscribers in the first 3 months of this year alone.
For businesses the impact of the lockdown has been equally dramatic with many having to implement plans for remote and home working almost overnight. Zoom, the cloud-based video conferencing application has seen its user numbers explode from 10 million a day to 200 million. In March, Microsoft said its Teams communication and collaboration platform had hit 44 million users, a jump of 40% in the space of a week.
One fact is clear, cloud computing has enabled many companies to continue operating seamlessly throughout the crisis where some businesses without cloud computing have seen processes and productivity grind to a halt.
The lockdown has highlighted some of the key benefits of cloud computing, for example:
- Anytime, Anywhere – the ability to access your data and programmes in the cloud from any web-enabled device at any time and from any location. This is obviously great for employees and management alike, and more important than ever as traditional office usage is much reduced.
- Scalability – at the moment great flexibility is needed as the services and facilities that employees need to access, and even the number of active employees in a company may vary from week to week. Cloud computing and software-as-a-service, or SaaS apps let companies scale up and down quickly without capital expenditure or the delays and complexities associated with planning and implementing new IT solutions in-house.
- Security – as we mentioned in one of our recent Blog posts, Cyber Criminals are actively trying to exploit any potential system weaknesses created by the current crisis. As a cloud-based approach places the responsibility for data and process security mostly with the provider, security solutions are scaled to a level most individual businesses cannot afford. Solutions may include data encryption, key management, strong access controls, and security intelligence and are sure to include frequent software updates and security audits.
- Efficiency – The Cloud computing model gives your business the ability to communicate and share documents, processes and applications more easily between teams and across multiple locations – perfect for our current decentralised ways of working.
- Cost – now more than ever companies will need to manage budgets and spend carefully. Cloud computing solutions can be provided on a subscription basis and a business will certainly only pay for the exact services it needs. Substantial up-front capital costs for equipment and software are avoided as are ongoing hardware, software, licensing or upgrade costs. Further savings are likely with the reduced staffing, space and energy costs associated with an in-house computing solution.
Here at Novem we specialise in providing fully hosted cloud computing solutions. We are a strategic Microsoft partner and can implement managed Office and Azure plans and other productivity solutions that are enabled over their cloud hosted services. We have assisted many businesses in successfully migrating from on-premise to cloud based IT systems.
To discuss how Novem can help your business with cloud computing during and after the lockdown, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, call 0800 046 9957, or fill in our Contact Form and we will be pleased to contact you.