Cloud computing has been the “next big thing” in IT for some time now. While its potential was obvious from the beginning, many organisations were reluctant to embrace the new technology as they couldn’t see where it fitted in with their existing IT model.
Over the last few years however, all that has changed and there has been a significant upsurge in the use of cloud technology. According to the RightScale 2015 State of the Cloud Survey, 93% of businesses are now using cloud technology in some form.
The survey, which asked 930 IT professionals from around the world about their adoption of cloud infrastructure and related technologies, also found that 20% of respondents are now running their entire enterprise workloads from the cloud. In terms of the type of cloud technology businesses are using, the report found that it differs in each organisation with 88% using public cloud technology, 63% using private cloud and 82% using a hybrid strategy.
So what is it about the cloud that is attracting so many organisations? Is it scalable and what benefits does it offer?
Economies of scale
One of the best assets of using the cloud is that it levels the playing field between SMEs and larger corporations. Prior to the cloud, growing your business required you to invest heavily upfront on IT infrastructure.
Cloud computing however, allows companies to subscribe only to the services it needs, paying on a monthly basis. This is particularly useful for smaller companies as it means they don’t have a huge initial outlay.
It also gives companies more flexibility to choose the services they need to grow their business and in times of economic hardship, to scale back if need be.
It's flexible for large organisations
For large companies, traditionally bogged down by expensive IT infrastructures, the ability to move quickly to adapt to changing organisational needs can prove difficult. The cloud however offers them much more agility. A study by IDG in late 2015 found that 56% of technology decision makers are still looking into how best to adopt cloud services, with the report highlighting the importance of understanding the various usage plans and service models that are available via the cloud.
As cloud computing uses the internet for storing and saving data, it does not have to be stored on a physical device. Therefore if a company computer or laptop gets damaged or stolen, company data remains secure. Cloud service providers have continued to increase the layers of security which has in turn given peace of mind for organisations storing sensitive information.
The cloud’s meteoric rise in recent times is in many ways, no surprise. This has been helped by tech corporations who have continued to support the spread of the technology. For instance, Microsoft pledged $1 billion (c. £700m) of cloud resources to organisations it deems to be working for the “public good” in the early part of 2016. The move is set to provide technology to around 70,000 non-profit organisations and 900 university research projects in the next three years alone.
This funding highlights the rise of the cloud of late, and given the many benefits it offers to organisations of all sizes, the trend towards the cloud is expected to continue and even accelerate.
Read our related blog: Tips to writing a good covering letter