In the past, in-house servers ran most business applications. Furthermore, employees could only access those resources via a company-owned computer. Businesses had to recruit and manage in-house IT teams and spend a lot on network infrastructure. Cloud computing changed everything.
Now, companies can access unlimited applications and other resources through secure mobile and web-based apps. Consequently, thanks to cloud computing solutions, companies with little or no technical resources can have extensive capabilities that once only large corporations could afford. In other words, cloud computing has surpassed on-premises computing in many settings.
As the business world increasingly moves toward the cloud, you should look for ways to use it to improve your business. Use the following tips to begin.
Maintaining in-house accounting and bookkeeping services can cost a lot in terms of human resources, management, software, and security. To save time and money, you can use cloud computing solutions to help with this type of job.
Cloud-based accounting software eliminates the security risks that come with on-premises servers and software. Furthermore, your software vendor can, in real time, roll out bug fixes, security patches, and new features.
Even better, thanks to the cloud, you can grant access to remote bookkeepers and accountants so that your business financial records always stay updated. Likewise, you can keep an eye on all your business’ transactions and reports, even while traveling.
Most cloud-based accounting software products come with mobile and browser-based apps that you and your team members can use from practically anywhere. These can result in improved efficiency by allowing employees to upload receipts and other documents into the system without any intermediaries.
Finally, cloud-based financial software apps can integrate with many other cloud-based applications. For example, your time tracking, benefits management, payroll, and accounting packages could automatically share data. In the end, you can eliminate data entry, streamline internal processes, and reduce your dependence on human resources.
As already noted, the cloud makes mobility possible. You and your team no longer must feel tethered to your desks as you work. Instead, you can have the freedom to work from home, on the road, at temporary locations, or at client sites.
In addition to giving your employees mobile access to your business’ systems, the cloud makes your business accessible to customers. Regardless of whether you operate a B2B or B2C firm, your customers can log into your systems to check inventory, order products, and pay their bills.
Cloud mobility can also open new opportunities for your company. For instance, you can easily acquire employee scheduling software that automatically processes cancelations and changes. For instance, if someone calls in sick, the system can immediately search for alternates to fill that person’s spot.
You can boost customer loyalty by developing a dedicated mobile app for your firm. That gives people direct access to your firm without having to load your website on their mobile phone. Likewise, you can develop a customer loyalty program that automatically tracks participants’ purchases as they work to earn rewards.
In the past, a fire, flood, theft, or hardware failure could bring your business to a standstill. When on-premises systems went bad, you’d lose some or all your data. Furthermore, your employees could sit idle for several days waiting for a new server to come online. The cloud changes that.
Cloud service providers maintain state-of-the-art systems that feature automated backups and redundant servers. So, should a hard drive fail, you’ll never know. Consequently, your business can operate without fearing that a lightning strike, power outage, or natural disaster will shut you down.
Security is another benefit of cloud storage. Your employees can work remotely without needing to create copies of your business’ data. Instead, they can access the records they need directly from the cloud. Technology such as user-level security ensures that you can limit your employees’ access to only the files they need to do their work.
Cloud storage applications also log user activities. So, you always have an audit trail that can help you track down people who deleted or edited files. Finally, cloud storage provides you with recovery options. Even if someone accidentally deletes vital files, you can work with your service provider to restore them.
Sharing and Collaboration
You and your team can use cloud collaboration and sharing applications to increase their productivity. From a single system, project managers can meet with executives, vendors, coworkers, and clients in a secure virtual room. Such a capability can reduce the need for employee travel while improving the quality of deliverables.
When you organize online meetings, you can use tools such as virtual whiteboards, private messaging, slide presentations, and video. During these sessions, participants can work together in the cloud to edit online documents, ask questions, and create schedules.
In addition to hosting meetings and sharing work, the cloud can provide round-the-clock access to customers and employees. So, clients can check the status of a project by logging into their portal to instantly to check progress.
Minimize IT Requirements
When using traditional software, businesses must constantly update their workstations to accommodate changing system requirements. On the other hand, cloud computing solutions require a minimal amount of physical resources. So, chances are that the computers and devices that you already use will work with any new cloud-based service package.
Now that most employees own a smartphone, computer, or tablet, a bring-your-own-device policy can help your business save even more on IT expenses.
Right now, cloud computing has become one of the top trends in business computing. Large and small companies love having a chance to reduce their IT hardware and staffing requirements. Meanwhile, employees love having the option to spend some of their working hours either at home or with a client.
Other benefits of the cloud, such as increased access to information and enhanced security make it a no brainer for many, if not most, organizations. If you’re ready to make your business work faster and smarter, why not start using the cloud today?