Cloud Computing is a buzzword, and it can mean many things but essentially means outsourcing your servers and software to an external data centre who will maintain, update, monitor and provide data security on a pay as you go basis. Our usual means of updating, maintaining, supporting and migrating our servers and software is not only time consuming and expensive but can also come with great operational and financial risks. Far better to hand over those risks to an outsourced data centre with a 24/7 secure monitoring centre with disaster recovery, back up, archiving and redundancy capabilities.

Technology continues to grow and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to maintain and upgrade the expensive hardware and software. This can cause a growing divide between larger and smaller companies. With Cloud Computing you will no longer need to spend large chunks of budgets on important systems such as email, customer relationship management systems or document management. Thus giving the smaller business a fair crack of the whip in a very competitive business world.

Services you will be able to outsource to The Cloud :

Infrastructure-as-a-Service – Pay for your back-end servers over the internet and pay as you go. Web Hosting is a prime example of this paying a monthly subscription or a per mega byte/per gigabyte fee.

Software-as-a-service – Web based email and Google documents are good examples and all MS applications will shortly follow. Don’t forget no more licences and expensive software upgrades!

Platform-as-a-Service – For when you have developed applications yourself, or developed for you, and have them hosted on external servers much like having an ecommerce site and having the shopping cart and payment mechanism hosted elsewhere.

As you can see a lot of cloud computing is already available and has been available for a long time just think of the old mainframes but as we become more data hungry and technology changes every 6 months it becomes expensive to maintain. As well as the immense savings to your company you will also benefit having access to greater storage space, be offered greater flexibility and employees can access information wherever they are . This will allow IT to shift its focus from server updates and maintenance to doing what it should be doing, innovation.