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Demystifying Cloud Computing: What Every Business Owner Should Know


Cloud computing has become an integral part of how modern businesses operate and grow. But for many companies, especially small and medium sized businesses, cloud computing still remains a confusing concept full of tech jargon.

Let’s break down the fundamentals of cloud computing in simple terms and highlight what every business should know in order to leverage the cloud effectively.

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing refers to storing and accessing data, programs, and services over the internet rather than on a local server or computer. Rather than maintaining costly hardware and software, with the cloud you essentially rent resources from specialized service providers.

The “cloud” refers to the vast global network of secure data centers where this data is stored. leading providers include Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform.

The key advantage of the cloud is that it allows businesses to scale resources up or down on demand. You only pay for what you use, reducing overall IT costs. The cloud also provides flexibility, business continuity and collaboration efficiency. Personnel can access programs and data from anywhere with an internet connection.



Common Types of Cloud Services

There are three main categories of cloud computing services that businesses utilize:

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

This provides access to fundamental computing resources like servers, storage, networks and operating systems over the internet. Businesses can avoid investing in physical infrastructure while maintaining control over applications and data. Amazon EC2 and Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines are examples of IaaS.

Platform as a Service (PaaS)

PaaS provides a framework for developing, running and managing apps without building the infrastructure. It offers development tools, middleware and operating systems. Google App Engine and AWS Elastic Beanstalk are popular PaaS options.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

SaaS is software hosted in the cloud that users access via the internet. It eliminates the need to install and maintain software locally. Common examples include email, calendaring and office suites like Gmail, Office 365 and Salesforce CRM.



Deployment Models: Public, Private and Hybrid Cloud

There are several ways that businesses can deploy cloud computing resources:

Public Cloud

This refers to services provided over the public internet and shared across organizations. They offer maximum efficiency and scalability but less customization.

Private Cloud

A private cloud provides dedicated resources used by one organization, providing greater control and customization. Private clouds can be hosted on-premises or through third-party vendors.

Hybrid Cloud

Hybrid clouds combine public and private cloud deployment. Critical systems and sensitive data are maintained privately while other resources are leveraged from public clouds. This provides both flexibility and tailored security.

Book a Discovery Call Today to Explore Your Cloud First Strategy


Key Benefits of Cloud Computing for Business

Adopting cloud computing strategically can yield significant advantages for organizations in various ways:

  • Cost Savings: Cloud eliminates the capital costs of buying hardware and software and setting up data centers. It also reduces ongoing maintenance and energy costs through metering of resources.
  • Scalability: Cloud infrastructure allows businesses to scale up or down to meet demands. No longer guessing required capacity or overpaying for unused resources.
  • Business Continuity: With data stored remotely rather than locally, businesses can access data and applications from any location in the event of disruptions like natural disasters.
  • Collaboration Efficiency: Since personnel across geographies can access shared documents and apps in the cloud, it enables seamless collaboration.
  • Flexibility: Cloud resources can be deployed rapidly and adapted to evolving needs. Companies can trial new initiatives and discard them if unsuccessful.
  • Improved Security: Leading cloud providers implement the latest security innovations and best practices. For most SMBs, a public cloud is more secure than on-premises infrastructure.

Take a closer look at the benefits of a Cloud First Strategy.

Factors to Consider When Adopting the Cloud

Migrating business systems and data to the cloud involves key considerations:

  • Cybersecurity: Test the cloud provider’s defenses against hackers, malware and ransomware. Multi-factor authentication, encryption and key management are essential.
  • Compliance: Cloud infrastructure must satisfy relevant compliance regulations for your industry, including HIPAA, PCI DSS, GDPR etc.
  • Costs: Do a full analysis of ongoing subscription fees, bandwidth usage charges and any egress/data transfer costs.
  • Service Level Agreements: Negotiate appropriate SLA compensation for any potential downtime, especially for mission critical workloads.
  • Recovery Plans: Have procedures in place to quickly recover data and switch cloud providers in case of a security breach or vendor failure.



The Cloud Imperative for Modern Business

Adopting cloud computing in some capacity is no longer an option but a strategic imperative. The Covid-19 pandemic accelerated reliance on cloud-based activities like remote work, video conferencing, e-commerce and streaming.

Cloud unlocks innovation, resilience and business growth. Integrating public cloud, private cloud and hybrid models provides the ideal balance of efficiency, control and risk management.

The key is taking an informed approach – understanding the fundamentals of cloud computing, assessing business needs and aligning objectives. With the right cloud-first strategy, any organization can transform digitally and compete in today’s dynamic business landscape.

Leverage cloud experts if required and focus on enabling personnel through training. Cloud computing remains complex but promises immense opportunity. Approach it based on business goals first and the technology second.

How to Get Started on a Cloud First Strategy?

Just click the button below and schedule a free, no obligation discovery call!

On this call we will discuss your unique situation, your business, and any concerns you have and of course, answer any questions you have about us. If you feel comfortable moving ahead, we’ll schedule a convenient time to conduct our proprietary IT Systems Assessment.

This assessment can be conducted 100% remotely with or without your current IT company or department knowing (we can give you the full details on our initial consultation call).

Book a Discovery Call Today to Explore Your Cloud First Strategy

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