Southern California Accounting Expert Discusses the Benefits of the Cloud: Is it Time for Your Business to Upgrade?
The business world runs on computers, and picking the right infrastructure for your office’s workflow is critical. Managing communication, customer data, and financing demands considerable computer power, so many companies are opting to offload much of the work to cloud networks. A Southern California Accounting expert shares a few of the benefits your business can gain by using cloud-based solutions.
Easier Hardware Management
Most cloud platforms allow users to connect through a web browser, so any computer capable of running a browser can serve as a workstation. Switching to cloud-based operations lets businesses skip on costly hardware upgrade cycles, which is often enough to cover the cost of switching to a cloud platform for years to come. Furthermore, hardware maintenance is easier with the cloud; just pull out a backup desktop or laptop while the faulty computer is being repaired.
Cut Back on Software Demands
Cloud software is hosted on remote computers, and it’s up to the operators to manage their software. It’s still important to keep your operating systems and browsers up to date, but switching to the cloud relieves the burden of managing other programs. Furthermore, using the cloud means you can take advantage of software updates instantly, and the change is usually transparent on your end. Because cloud software runs online, taking advantage of new software often involves simply signing up for a service and directing employees to the proper link.
Using the cloud lets you offload most of your security needs to a cloud provider. It’s important to keep your operating systems and browsers up to date to prevent virus infestations and hacks, but offloading your networking to a third party means they’re responsible for protecting your data. Cloud providers operate largely on their reputation, and most make security a top priority. Hacks are still possible, but they’re far less likely on the cloud.
Increasingly, employees are asking to work from home. Telecommuting can save companies money and give employees more flexibility, but letting users connect to the office can be technically demanding. Cloud interfaces allow users to access information and communicate from anywhere they can access the internet, making telecommuting easy. The cloud is also great for business travelers, as they can access information while away from the office in seconds. This makes loading information for a presentation or other event simple.
Backups are critical for keeping your business information safe, and businesses frequently run into trouble when a hard drive fails and the backup doesn’t load correctly. Cloud providers rely on robust backup solutions that ensure your information is always protected. Effective providers store information at remote locations, so natural disasters won’t destroy the main disk drives and backup media at the same time. Providers often let users export data to store locally as well, ensuring you can always create a physical copy of your information.
The goal of business is to grow, but expanding your computer infrastructure to keep up can be difficult. Because cloud providers have so much processing power, adding users or new features to your account is simple, and it’s often done automatically. Most providers offer plans supporting businesses ranging from small to enterprise, and upgrading to a new plan typically requires only a few clicks. These plans also help you reliably estimate the technical cost of growth since cloud plan costs are usually easy to understand.
When using the cloud, switching between different providers is simple. Self-hosted software changes often demand switching to different hardware, but cloud providers rarely require anything other than standard business- or even consumer-grade devices. This also makes trying out different cloud solutions simple, letting you enroll in a trial to determine if a particular provider is right for your business without having to borrow or purchase new hardware.
As with any big change in the business world, moving to the cloud can be a frightening proposition. However, cloud providers have been thoroughly tested through the years, and the benefits are clear. While moving to the cloud might not be the right choice for your business, it’s worth investigating for businesses of all sizes.
For more information on how a Southern California Accounting firm can help you migrate to the cloud click here for your free consultation.