“If someone asks me what cloud computing is, I try not to get bogged down with definitions. I tell them that, simply put, cloud computing is a better way to run your business.” - Marc Benioff, Founder, CEO and Chairman of Salesforce
By 2021, the public cloud computing market will be worth a staggering $278.3 billion (£213 billion). In today’s world, businesses are adopting an array of cloud computing examples to help drive better outcomes, improve their services and increase revenue.
But what exactly are they using the technology for?
Four essential cloud computing examples
In this blog, we’ll show you some incredible real-world examples of cloud computing and what the technology has done for businesses like yours, including:
- Enhanced communication and collaboration
- More reliable data security and disaster recovery
- Greater opportunities for application experimentation and development
- Better data insights for business-driven processes.
1. Better communication and collaboration
Cloud-based tools, such as emailing software or social media platforms, open up new avenues of communication and collaboration. Ultimately, this means you don’t need to channel all work communication through a single, stationary desktop.
And, with sophisticated collaboration suites like Office 365, you don’t need to chain yourself to the office either.
For one of our clients, a London-based private equity firm, keeping up-to-date with the latest technology and ensuring that their data was secure and retrievable was their utmost concern.
A move to the Microsoft Cloud provided the perfect opportunity to invest in collaborative tools and portable devices in a secure, uncomplicated way. Ultimately, this boosted workplace efficiency and provided their employees with previously unachievable flexibility.
2. Stronger data security and disaster recovery
Backing up your data and investing in a disaster recovery (DR) strategy shouldn’t be a choice: it’s a necessity. It’s one of the most vital cloud computing examples your business should be adopting.
However, when it comes to replicating your data on-premise, things are often complicated and expensive. Without the right resources, you’ll find that you’re not in the position to implement a data backup solution yourself.
Fortunately, cloud platforms such as Azure offer affordable, almost infinitely scalable backup and disaster recovery options. These include the ability to test the state of your business continuity, ensuring that you’re never unprepared for the worst-case scenario.
In the case of Somerset County Council, the inflexibility, complexity and poor scalability of their on-premise back-up solution posed serious issues. However, a move to Azure offered the council an array of benefits, including:
- A simplified, intuitive user interface that helped to increase IT efficiency
- Less on-premise infrastructure, helping to boost their agility and ability to scale
- A “six-digit cost saving” and better budgeting with Azure’s pay-as-you-go model
3. More innovative application experimentation
45 percent of businesses are running applications in Microsoft Azure, with a further 22 percent experimenting. These cloud computing examples give us the best insight into the kinds of innovation that businesses can achieve with the right tools.
With its near-infinite scalability, the cloud gives your organisation the room to experiment and grow on-demand. And, you don’t have to be an expert to do it, either.
So, what kind of application could your business be pioneering?
Hungary’s OTP Bank chose Azure’s services to create eBiz, an application that combines online banking, billing and account management into one service. Ultimately, this app saves users’ time by automatically preparing and sending invoices, performing reconciliation, and completing other administrative tasks.
Azure’s flexibility, functionality and global availability offered the firm a solution they could never provide on-premise.
4. Going beyond data insights
Big Data and data-driven innovation can become key business differentiators. But only if you use them in the right way.
Although many businesses collect data, 60 percent still don’t have a Big Data solution to help turn insights into actions. In fact, 71 percent of respondents rate the difficulty of acting upon business insights from data collection as average, difficult or very difficult.
Fortunately, cloud computing makes the collection, analysis, and use of data much easier. For one energy service provider, Energisme, Azure’s Internet of Things (IoT) and automation technologies (as well as advanced analytic capabilities) helped them create a more optimised energy management system.
The new program collects information, such as electricity and gas usage, from IoT sensors and smart meters, using Azure’s IoT hub. Once the data has been collected, Energisme use Azure Machine Learning to create predictive models that allow users to anticipate and manage their energy consumption.
Due to its superior agility and scalability, Azure was the best fit for delivering a smarter, more personalised service.
Follow the leaders, not the crowd
With around 90 percent of companies embracing the cloud in some capacity, there are plenty of cloud computing examples to learn from. Hopefully, this article has given you a taste of what’s achievable with the right strategy.
From building reliable back-up solutions to pioneering game-changing IoT services, the cloud is the perfect platform to help you amplify the qualities that make your business brilliant. And, with its impressive flexibility, scalability and affordability, companies of any size can use cloud services to transform their future faster than ever before.
So, what’s holding you back? Follow in the footsteps of these cloud computing giants and start your journey to IT nirvana today.