The Maturing Cloud: Using It to Innovate, Not Just Cut Costs

Posted on March 23, 2015 by Adam Burnham

By Paul Diamond

While cloud adoption in the workplace has grown over the past five or so years, it has usually been the same reasons given again and again by companies about why they’ve turned to the cloud: the need to improve accessibility by employees, the need to cut costs by eliminating costly infrastructure and services – and the need to become a more efficient organization where information can easily be shared.

The majority of the focus in any media produced about the cloud has focused on these three key elements and related topics, such as security or how the cloud enables a company to expand or contract with ease. There’s been few signs that companies are thinking about how, with their business now cloud-enabled, that investment can change their business for the better and pay off dividends in other ways.

Until now, that is.

Recently, global tech giant SAP announced the results of a cloud study it had conducted with Oxford Economics, finding that the “…cloud is now being more frequently used to innovate.” That’s an important statement. For the first time, businesses are beginning to realize the true transformative power of the cloud – how it can help change their business and the products they sell for the better.

Which, when you think about it, is what the cloud has been leading to anyway. The whole point of using the cloud to run a faster, leaner, more efficient and more connected business is to empower the business to spend more time on matters that really help the business, such as innovating on new products, services and technologies.

The cloud has made it so easy for companies to not only communicate in real-time with employees dispersed across the globe that collaboration has begun to seem like second nature. You can open a technical drawing with a colleague in Japan and complete it together. Intellectual property can be shared and collaborated on whether an employee is working at home or at a tradeshow. The cloud has long been said to make business limitless, and we’re finally starting to see that happen.

Some of the findings of the survey further drive these points home:

  • 99 percent of respondents believed that cloud computing is part of their company's business strategy
  • 69 percent of businesses expected to make moderate to heavy cloud investments over the next three years
  • 33 percent of respondents believed that the adoption of cloud computing has had a transformative impact on their business performance

The study also found that the burgeoning big data and information analytics trends written about so often the past year are closely connected to the cloud. As more companies invest in capturing and analyzing everything from customer data to IT operations and security, a strong, secure cloud will be necessary to empower this analysis.

The survey said that “…the real-time use of big data is growing in strategic importance, with 59 percent saying that they use the cloud to better manage and analyze data.” With the cloud being used to collaborate and innovate, it only makes sense that one of the areas that this collaboration and innovation will take place in the future is the analysis of big data and its application to improving the business and your products and services.

All the more reason for everyone reading this to invest in a strong, secure and capable cloud solution. To learn more about how Markley Group’s cloud computing solutions can help your business become more efficient –and innovative, call 617-451-6464 or email us at info@markleygroup.com.