Cloud & Virtualisation

12 Business Benefits of Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is already an essential service for many businesses and it’s only going to grow in importance over the next decade. In this article, we take a look at the key benefits that cloud computing can have on your organisation.

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing is the delivery of digital storage and applications over the internet – allowing businesses to access these services remotely from cloud service providers.

It’s a flexible, convenient, and affordable way to manage infrastructure, platforms, and software. Cloud computing can reduce reliance on physical servers and data centres, and can be scaled up or down according to business needs, making it a highly flexible and cost-effective.

A 2023 report from Google stated that 41.4% of global tech and business leaders are planning to increase their use of cloud-based services, with 33% planning to migrate from outdated legacy systems to cloud based software in the near-future.

Benefits of Cloud Computing

Here are some of the key benefits that business can gain from adopting cloud computing software in their organisation:

1. Cost Savings: Cloud computing allows businesses to avoid the upfront costs of hardware and software, and instead pay for only the resources they use on a pay-as-you-go basis, reducing capital expenses and lowering overall operational costs.

2. Scalability and Flexibility: Cloud computing provides businesses with the ability to scale their resources up or down based on their needs, allowing for flexibility in adapting to changing business requirements, seasonal demands, or unexpected spikes in workload.

3. Enhanced Collaboration: Cloud-based collaboration tools enable teams to work together in real-time, regardless of their physical location, facilitating seamless communication, file sharing, and project management, leading to improved productivity and innovation.

4. Increased Accessibility: In tandem with enhanced collaboration, cloud computing allows businesses to access their applications, data, and services from anywhere, at any time, using various devices, such as desktops, laptops, tablets, or smartphones, providing increased mobility and remote work capabilities.

5. Improved Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity: Cloud-based backup and disaster recovery solutions provide businesses with robust data protection, reducing the risk of data loss and ensuring business continuity in the event of a disaster or system failure.

6. Enhanced Security: Cloud providers often offer advanced security features, such as encryption, multi-factor authentication, and regular security updates, ensuring that data and applications are protected against unauthorised access and cyber threats.

7. Streamlined IT Management: Cloud computing offloads the responsibility of infrastructure management, software updates, and maintenance to the cloud provider, allowing businesses to focus on their core competencies and streamline their IT operations.

8. Rapid Deployment: Cloud computing allows businesses to quickly deploy applications and services without the need for complex and time-consuming infrastructure setup, reducing time-to-market for new products or services.

9. Increased Innovation: Cloud computing provides businesses with access to cutting-edge technologies, such as machine learning, artificial intelligence, and big data analytics, enabling them to leverage these innovations to gain a competitive edge and drive business growth.

10. Green Computing: Cloud computing promotes environmentally friendly practices by optimising resource utilisation, reducing energy consumption, and minimising electronic waste, resulting in a smaller carbon footprint, and contributing to sustainability efforts.

11. Global Reach: Cloud computing enables businesses to expand their operations globally by leveraging the cloud provider's data centres and network infrastructure, allowing for faster and more cost-effective entry into new markets.

12. Customisation and Flexibility: Cloud computing allows businesses to choose from a wide range of cloud services, configurations, and deployment models, enabling them to tailor their cloud environment to their specific needs and requirements, providing maximum flexibility and customisation options.

 

Cloud computing vs On-Premises IT

There are a handful of key differences between cloud computing and on-premises IT services. To list a few:

 

On-Premises

Cloud Computing

Deployment

An on-premises environment means all resources are local to the business and deployed by in-house IT.

Cloud computing can either mean public, private, or a hybrid, but all of them use resources hosted elsewhere

Cost

All ongoing costs for hardware, power consumption, space, and labor are incurred by the business.

Cloud computing is subscription based and businesses only need to pay for what they use, without needing to worry about maintenance costs.

Control

On-premises setups allow businesses to retain full control of all their data, for better or worse. This means companies with privacy concerns are more likely to favour this option.

The ownership of the data is a pain point for cloud computing, since vendors have the keys to the encrypted data, any downtime they experience means your data may be unavailable to you.

Security

Very secure. All data lies within in the on-site storage system. Certain industries, like banking or government, require high levels of security. They will likely opt for an on-premises solution as security is their highest concern.

Security is the biggest concern with cloud computing. Breaches happen more frequently given how open the systems are, and the loss of IP and other data leaks are something to think about. However, this often only applies to public clouds, so private and hybrid clouds are more secure options.

 

Types of Cloud Computing

Under the umbrella term of Cloud Computing there are a couple of options that companies have. There are public clouds, private clouds, and hybrid clouds.

  • Public clouds: When most people imagine the cloud, they imagine a public cloud. Documents, data, and more are stored in this cloud and only accessible to whomever has the login/authorisation.

  • Private clouds: similar to public clouds in essence but highly secure to one specific organisation. It can be deployed on-premises but is still a cloud computing software option.
  • Hybrid clouds: Just like the name suggests, hybrid clouds are a mix of public and private clouds.

Withing these types of clouds, there are three main types of cloud computing services: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS).

  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): IaaS provides virtualised computing resources, such as virtual machines, storage, and networking, over the internet. Businesses can use IaaS to create their own IT infrastructure in the cloud, allowing them to deploy and manage their own applications, operating systems, and databases. Examples of IaaS providers include Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP).
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS): PaaS provides a platform for developing, running, and managing applications without having to worry about the underlying infrastructure. PaaS allows businesses to focus on writing code and developing applications, while the platform takes care of managing the underlying infrastructure, such as operating systems, databases, and middleware. Examples of PaaS providers include Heroku, IBM Cloud Foundry, and Oracle Cloud Platform.
  • Software as a Service (SaaS): SaaS provides software applications that are hosted and delivered over the internet. Businesses can access these applications through web browsers without having to install or manage any software locally. SaaS applications are typically multi-tenant, meaning that multiple users can access the same application, each with their own data and settings. Examples of SaaS providers include Salesforce, Microsoft Office 365, and Dropbox.

 

Cloud computing platforms

Cloud computing platforms are the foundation of cloud computing, providing the underlying infrastructure and services that businesses can leverage to build, deploy, and manage their applications and services. Here are some popular cloud computing platforms:

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS): AWS is a comprehensive cloud computing platform offered by Amazon. It provides a wide range of services, including computing power, storage, networking, databases, analytics, machine learning, and more. AWS offers a global network of data centers, allowing businesses to deploy their applications and services in multiple regions worldwide. AWS is known for its scalability, reliability, and extensive ecosystem of tools and services, making it a top choice for many businesses.
  • Microsoft Azure: Azure is a cloud computing platform offered by Microsoft, providing a wide range of services for building, deploying, and managing applications and services. Azure offers services for computing, storage, networking, databases, analytics, artificial intelligence, and more. It also integrates well with Microsoft's other products, such as Windows Server, SQL Server, and Office 365, making it a popular choice for businesses that already use Microsoft technologies.
  • Google Cloud Platform (GCP): GCP is another one of the three largest cloud computing platforms, providing a wide range of services for computing, storage, networking, databases, machine learning, and more. GCP is known for its strong focus on machine learning and analytics capabilities, making it a popular choice for businesses that require advanced data processing and analysis.
  • Oracle Cloud: Providing a comprehensive suite of services for building, deploying, and managing applications and services. Oracle Cloud offers services for computing, storage, networking, databases, analytics, artificial intelligence, and more. It also integrates well with Oracle's other products, such as Oracle Database, Oracle Middleware, and Oracle Applications, making it a popular choice for businesses that already use Oracle technologies.
  • VMware Cloud: VMware Cloud is a cloud computing platform that leverages VMware's virtualisation technologies, allowing businesses to seamlessly extend their existing VMware-based data centers to the cloud. VMware Cloud offers services for computing, storage, networking, databases, analytics, and more, all based on VMware's familiar virtualisation technology stack. This makes it a popular choice for businesses that are already heavily invested in VMware technologies and want to extend their virtualised environments to the cloud.

Cloud computing training for your business

Discover more about Cloud Computing Training with QA or contact our team today

QA offers official training across the three major cloud service providers (AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform) and other public and private cloud vendors (VMware, Microsoft, Citrix, Oracle, and Red Hat). Our expert tutors can help you at every stage of your cloud journey – from the basics to beyond. We’ll improve your cloud know-how and show you how best to use it.

Over 2.5 quitillion bytes of data are created every single day and it's only going to grow from there. It’s estimated that in 2020, 1.7MB of data will be created every second for every person on earth. And it’s not just data – businesses are relying more and more on technological solutions that require heavier storage and need support to maintain IT speed!

As a result, more than a third of organisations see cloud investments as a top three investment priority and as part of this the workforces of the future need to readjust. 94% of hiring managers are having a ‘somewhat difficult’ time finding cloud tech candidates. Therefore, the focus needs to also be on upskilling the current workforce.

Our Learning, Cloud Apprenticeships and Talent Solutions come alive through cutting edge delivery and practical resources. Online or in one of our classrooms - QA’s blended solution empowers you, your team, and organisation. We have a solution that is tailorable to the needs of the organisation and can adapt to different learning pathways, wherever you are in your cloud adoption journey.

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