Starting with the term information technology, a small business owner realizes that IT is more than word processors and Facebook pages. Information technology is the foundation that allows for most of our business communication. We no longer are afforded the luxury of face-to-face business meetings if we are to stay relevant in the global economy.
Luckily, cloud technology has allowed IT to take wing, bringing together businesses and consumers in ways we never before thought possible.
The Money Factor
Any sound business plan begins with a budget. And on a decision matrix, fiscal benefit should be one of the factors. It is here that a smart entrepreneur must start when weighing the benefits of cloud computing.
Most small and medium businesses have limited resources for a robust IT department since it is an administrative overhead cost, which often does not have a linear contribution to sales. Still, we know that our sales teams would be lost without their assistance.
Cloud computing allows a small business the ability to have a powerful IT department with all of the bells and whistles of the larger organizations, but at a fraction of the cost. This is especially true when looking at new technologies. To add innovation to an on-site department, it means investing significant money. When using cloud platforms, however, upgraded servers and algorithms are included, and no longer your responsibility. This allows you to stay cutting edge and focused on attracting new clients, without a large outlay of cash toward IT.
Taking the World
We live in a global, internet- and smartphone-driven society, and a successful business can have employees all over the world who they’ll never meet face to face. By creating a virtual office on the cloud with documents and video messaging capabilities, you can have feet on the ground anywhere in the world without a loss of productivity. Cloud technology offers mobility for both your employees and your documents.
Using the system LiveDrive as an example, a business owner can share all of the important company documents with business associates and employees across the globe. They will be securely stored so that there is low risk of theft, and they can be synced immediately for real-time access to changes. From the consumer’s point of view, this is a seamless system where sales staff make the commitment and the business immediately follows through.
Use What You Need
One of the important business benefits that cloud computing brings to the table is scalability, and this directly lends itself to the consumer’s positive transaction experience. We no longer look for cloud technology to just store documents. Images, forms and communication all have become part of the cloud environment. A business can create an entire community on their personal cloud.
This virtual world can become as big as you need it to be because of scalable cloud technology. This flexible, pay-as-you-go structure lets a small business experiment with new ideas and innovations without the need to invest large sums of money into development.
Its clear that embracing cloud technology will open new doors to new business opportunities in the future – for businesses small or large.
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