There is a saying that SMEs in the present digitally evolved era should work smarter not harder. IT infrastructure is a crucial part of operations for all business enterprises including SMEs. But an IT department is expensive to maintain as it requires regular hardware refreshes, software upgrades, up-to-date security measures, and dedicated staff. In addition, the challenges of rapidly changing market dynamics and the demand for quick scalability make traditional IT infrastructure an increasingly outdated concept, especially to small and mid-sized businesses. That’s why the relationship between cloud computing and SMEs is getting stronger and stronger. This post highlights some of the key benefits of cloud computing for SMEs.
5 Key Benefits of Cloud Computing for SMEs
Cloud computing has a lot to offer to SMEs. Following are the 5 key benefits that SMEs can realize from cloud computing solutions:
- Availability of Data Anytime, Anywhere
Cloud computing makes data accessible anytime from anywhere. The COVID-19 pandemic has taught businesses that they can no longer rely solely on on-premises data storage servers. Remote or virtual workers need access to data from wherever they may be and often at times that are outside traditional local business hours. Cloud computing can provide a central web-based database that enables access to the company’s data to anyone who has been authorized. All it takes is an internet connection, compatible device, and proper credentials to access data from any corner of the globe.
- Reduced Business Complexity
In addition to the routine hassles associated with delivering quality products or services, SMEs have traditionally had to struggle with plenty of IT-centric business challenges, such as IT security, administration of databases, management of servers, and similar others. Cloud computing brings centralized IT management, reinforced IT security, proper data management, and enhanced business automation. In short, the cloud environment helps SMEs to get rid of most of their IT-related complexities.
- Scalability of Products and Services
The business world is changing rapidly. The evolving technologies and consumer behaviors demand SMEs to turbocharge their products/services to keep up with the market pace. But scalability of products/services requires constant investment in IT infrastructure. Cloud computing works on a pay-per-use model, where the resources are easily extendible at a minimal cost. SMEs can focus on their products/services quality thanks to the flexibility of cloud resources that provide them the ability to quickly scale IT infrastructure up or down as needed.
Of the many advantages associated with cloud computing, it is its cost-friendly nature that many SMEs find most attractive. Instead of spending business capital and time on setting up and supporting on-premises server equipment, SMEs can subscribe to a reliable cloud service on a monthly or annual plan based on their required storage space and other services. The services cost of cloud computing is a lot less expensive than having an on-premises data storage system which also requires frequent maintenance and dedicated staff members.
SMEs must be increasingly vigilant of data breaches, malware attacks, and other similar cyber-threats that no longer target only the largest of enterprises. A company’s success today depends on how strong its defense system is. While cloud computing by definition means more involvement with the Internet, it enhances the overall security of data-centric internal operations. Most cloud services providers encrypt the data before uploading to the cloud (remote servers) and only empower properly authorized personnel to decrypt and access the data. Moreover, cloud services providers take security seriously. They have dedicated experienced cybersecurity teams and other top-notch firewalls that don’t let hackers easily breach the defense system.
Cloud computing is fast becoming a must-have strategy for SMEs in order to cope with their market and consumer needs. It gives SMEs the freedom to think out-of-the-box and amplify their business operations without stressing on IT infrastructure. In a nutshell, cloud computing is the best IT support SMEs have got today to fulfill their business visions and achieve their goals.