Cloud computing and SME’s

 

By Jon Falgate

Many consumers are not aware that well-known applications such as Dropbox and Netflix are part of Cloud.

In terms of usage, UK small to medium enterprises (SME’s) use Cloud primarily for hosting services, backing-up data and e-mails, with data storage and booking systems also popular.

The industry was worth $16.7 billion in 2013 and that figure is expected to rise to $40 billion moving towards 2020 meaning Cloud will jump from having 2.8 % of the IT market up to an astonishing 15%.

Cloud based advertising is also expected to jump from $36.5 billion to an incredible $77.1 billion. It is estimated that the use of Cloud technology in some European countries will boost their economies by an amazing $177 billion, creating an impressive 445,000 new jobs each year.

The infographic also shows that UK SME’s that adopted Cloud reported a huge 45.5% cost reduction because they had no need for high-powered computers and servers anymore. Flexibility and accessibility when it came to working remotely was also increased which in turn improved efficiency.

Cloud seems to be the answer for any business who should, or want, to ‘go green’ with reports of carbon emissions being cut by over 90% as a result of switching over to the Cloud based systems.

All the drawbacks of traditional computer systems and programs, such as software disks, an in-house IT team and repeatedly having to update systems, were all eliminated by using Cloud.

All these factors in turn help companies get ahead of their traditional computer based competitors and revenue growth and profit increases have been reported among business who have switched to Cloud.

Many businesses and IT executives seem to be behind this new way of working with 66% saying it is ‘an innovation driver’ while 50% consider it ‘an efficiency tool.’

Implementing a Cloud system can be extremely easy, especially if you are a small scale SME and downloading an app may be all it takes. However, if you work on a larger scale you will need to make sure you are happy with your system and should ‘try before you buy’ so you commit to the most suitable platform. Security is a huge consideration and this should be checked out with your potential providers alongside a service agreement to make sure you are guaranteed service delivery. Implementing a system can take from 6 to 15 months so start to think about it now as it may not happen instantly. However, if you are a small business, an instant app may do the job!

Cloud computing infographic

About the author

Jon Falgate is Digital Content Editor at Towergate Insurance, an insurance broker who offer cover to personal and business customers in a number of markets including cover for small and medium enterprises such as specialized tradesmen and health and beauty businesses from a range of market leading policies.

http://www.towergateinsurance.co.uk/

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