Few if any businesses today can thrive without the use of technology. Whether you're selling horseshoes and farrier services or big data analytics, technology can make the difference between scratching out a living and really thriving. In fact, it's safe to say that small businesses can benefit abundantly from wise investments in technology.
Technologies exist that allow small players to compete better with their large enterprise counterparts, and the ability to do this is becoming increasingly necessary for small business success. Cloud technology, and in particular a hybrid cloud environment, answers this need perfectly. Here's how.
Scalability Is an Issue Across Most Industries
Scalability means different things for different businesses. One business may need to scale up quickly after one of its products or content marketing posts goes viral. Another may need to scale up in the months leading up to the holiday shopping season, and then scale back down afterward. The more elastic a company's technology, the more the company can avoid excessive overhead to be "right-sized" at all times.
Cloud technology, whether by itself or in conjunction with a company's on-premise technology infrastructure, does wonders for scalability. For example, you can hire three designers today and make sure each has the relevant software packages immediately by simply buying cloud-based subscriptions rather than physically installing software on their computers. As another example, archiving of the data created by your on-site technology can be done in the cloud so it's always accessible without taking up valuable space in your servers.
Capital Investment Priorities Are Changing
Starting a tech-oriented company once meant a big up-front capital investment in computer hardware. While tech companies still invest more heavily in IT hardware than their less tech-oriented counterparts, much of the investment has shifted to cloud services.
The statistical analysis packages, design software, timekeeping software, and other necessary types of software are hosted off-premises, in the cloud. It's always there for you, and cloud security has made enormous strides in recent years. Early arguments about better safety when all processing takes place on-site are largely moot now because of improvements in cloud security.
The Cloud Unlocks Significant Small Business Potential
Think about traditional software usage for a business. Manual installation of security patches or upgrades often resulted in downtime that your business could ill afford. With cloud technology, the cloud provider takes care of all of this. You can be confident that each and every one of your technology users accesses the latest software version with the latest security and upgrade patches installed, for greater consistency across your company.
In other words, you can access and use technology just like the major enterprises, but you don't have to have an in-house IT team to ensure you consistently have access to the technologies you use. The time savings and faster pace this allows helps small businesses compete more effectively.
The Hybrid Cloud Environment Offers the Best of All Worlds
A hybrid cloud is a cloud computing environment consisting of a mix of on-premises hardware and software, private cloud services (which are dedicated to your organization and not shared), and public cloud services. It can be the ideal approach to technology advancement for companies that have and use on-premises technology and want to get the most use out of it.
An example of hybrid cloud environment would be a business that uses an on-premises, private cloud to host company confidential information, but uses a public cloud provider to host less critical resources, like test cases or back-office functions.
The hybrid cloud is answering technology needs for businesses of all sizes, including small startups. It offers distinct advantages compared to the cloud-only and the legacy-only computing environment. If your company is being held back by your tech choices (or lack of choices), then you owe it to yourself and your team to look to the cloud. The possibilities are nearly endless, and you can make the right size investment to maximize your particular ROI.
SimplyClouds has extensive experience with cloud technology and makes deployment, customization and maintenance simple. If you have any questions about the cloud in general, a hybrid cloud environment, or would like to discuss cloud possibilities for you and your team, give us a call. We’re sure we can help.