Do Cloud Services meet SMEs need ?
The benefits of cloud computing for SMEs are at the heart of many debates. These companies, whose resources are often limited, can store important data and benefit from an powerful computing infrastructure without having to invest in software and hardware. Cloud Computing alleviates operating expenses and allows SMEs to devote their resources to their growth plans. But what should know business leaders and decision makers about the cloud?
And what are the received ideas on the subject?
1- SMEs use Cloud Computing in many ways and know it.
- email via Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo…
- Websites via firm’s special Web Page for instance
- Social Media ( Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn …)
- Online productivity tools (Office 365, Google Apps…)
- Online storage and backup services (Dropbox, YouSendIt, Google Drive, SafeSync …)
If you use at least one of those tools, that’s mean that your firm already enjoy the benefits of the Cloud.
2- It is more expensive to use Cloud services than to invest in hardware and software.
Let’s take an example. A SME needs a server to store its data trades. Buying this server involves a heavy investment, as well as operating and maintenance expenses. This company must also call on a competent technician to manage this server. Finally, the software must be maintained and updated regularly, which further increases budgets.
On the contrary, a cloud service will offer several servers to the firms and will relieve the constraints that are related to it, since it is the providers of cloud solutions that will manage the servers. Moreover, a internal technician could not administer a 24×7 server, which would indicates a risk in terms of reliability.
3- Cloud Computing cut process and weight down productivity.
In fact, it is just the contrary. Cloud services ease the processes and boost productivity for several reasons.
Cloud solutions enable SMEs to use the power of effective and upmarket servers. Cloud servers offer a 24/7 access to data, event in case of malfunction of equipments used by SMEs.Cloud services allow users to access,to use and manage ever larger volumes of data. A study lead by Microsoft showed that 59% of SME that use Cloud have recorded a boost of their productivity.
4- Cloud access via equipment personal is safe.
Data storage in the cloud is more secure, but the risk data loss nevertheless exists. Use of personal equipment to access data stored in the cloud creates a risk of loss or data piracy, particularly in case of theft of such equipment or security permeable to misuse of data. The losses of data, equipment replacement and restoration personal costs can be very expensive and can damage the reputation of the company.
The APEC SME DIGITAL RESILIENCE TRAINING WORKSHOP, co-hosted by VICGO on August 29th, 2018 in Ho Chi Minh, was at this stage very interesting as experts shared with participants about digital resilience. A Guidebook,free to download; has been published so as to learn SME how to protect their data and avoid hacking.
What can we conclude ? Of course, Cloud services meet SMEs needs. However, so as to have the best use of this tools, SMEs must have everything prepared to avoid hacking and to lower possible technological problem.