Increasing Business Efficiency With the Cloud



Article Written by Avery Phillips

Time-intensive tasks like server maintenance and keeping track of in-house storage can feel like throwing man-hours into a black hole. Human innovation has always been driven by the desire to increase productivity - to perform a task more efficiently in the same amount of time. For businesses today, freeing up an employee's time to focus on more critical tasks has a huge impact on performance and, ultimately, the bottom line. 

The tech industry is being bombarded by innovations, and the applications of a new technology are rarely fully explored when it first arrives on the scene. The functionality of the cloud dates back to the 1950s, but its applications have been changing and growing. 

The main benefit for a business is the flexibility that cloud computing offers. Instead of purchasing and maintaining servers on which to store data and run applications, businesses can pay for the computing power they need on a network of off-site servers. If a quick scale up, or down, is required, they can just pay for more or less space. 

For today's tech-savvy businesses, cloud computing offers a number of solutions to other time-intensive tasks by moving them online. It's allowing marketing teams to collaborate more easily, it's making points of physical interaction with customers smoother, and it's becoming the preferred way to handle financial data. 

Content Marketing Collaboration 

Marketing has always required a varied set of skills, a list which is only increasing. A modern marketing team needs writers, designers, video editors, researchers, data analysts, and more. Efficient collaboration is the key to executing a project successfully when it requires so many different skillsets. 

This is where cloud computing comes in. Infrastructure as a service, the cloud, doesn't just refer to storage. Cloud services like Microsoft Azure come with in-depth tools for managing uploaded files, controlling access, and organization. These services can be used to help teams in different parts of the office, the country, or the world collaborate on a project together. 

Physical Interaction 

The days of expensive signage printing fees are over. Or at least they should be. The advent of digital signage has given businesses to change the way they interact with customers. Restaurants, hotels, and hospitals are obvious heavy users of signage, but any business with a public location likely has information to communicate to visitors. 

Digital signs are a step up from printed signs, but controlling what they display and how they display it can still suck up a lot of time if you're setting each device individually. 

Combining a cloud storage service and content management system with digital signage can improve the guest experience, as well as make the dissemination of information more efficient. Using cloud-based software instead of relying on the software of each individual device allows you to create a centralized system. That way you can upload files into a single place and remotely control how each sign functions. 

Financial Data 

Another benefit to the storage and collaborative functionality of cloud services comes with storing financial data. Access to financial data needs to be carefully controlled, but at the same time a number of people need access to the raw numbers for tax purposes, for analysis, for financial reporting. 

Whenever you have data or resources that multiple people, teams, or departments need access to, it's a good idea to centralize and to prepare for scaling. That's exactly what adopting a cloud service does. It's a great way to nip interdepartmental headaches in the bud and takes the pressure off your in-house resources. It can be worrying to store financial data off site, but keeping finances in the cloud safely is quite doable. 

The applications of cloud storage are growing consistently. At first, adopting cloud services can seem overwhelming. It's important to bring key team members on board before you start the process of moving to cloud services. Starting off with a cooperative effort will help make the most of the services you're about to employ.

##

About the Author


Avery Phillips is a unicorn of a human being who loves all things relating to people and their entrepreneurial spirits. Comment down below or tweet her @a_taylorian.