More and more small businesses and individuals are using cloud-based services to store their information online. If your small business hasn’t yet contemplated the idea you should consider its benefits.
An online cloud service refers to the storage of data on a remote server where you can sync and access that data on any device, anywhere anytime, without having to manage that process yourself. Other cloud-based services offer software or systems that can be accessed from a range of devices.
While a potential draw-back of cloud-based services is that you are at the peril of a quality and consistent internet connection, when fully operational, a cloud-based service works brilliantly. Here are some of the benefits for using a cloud-based service for your business:
- With little to no budget for IT consulting, you will be able to do more uploading and retrieving of data yourself. This works well if you are a small business and finances for contractors are tight.
- You can access your data from mobile devices. If your staff move between locations, work freelance or are often away from their desks, they can still log on an have access to everything they need to get the job done. For example, a cloud-based project management system allows your staff to view, share and upload data from ipads, laptops, smartphones and more. It adapts your business to your changing needs and allows flexibility for how your work.
- The most useful feature of a cloud-based service is the remote and secure back-up of your data. In the event of a disaster this is indispensable. Many cloud-services integrate together so that your portfolios are directly linked to uploaded documents. For example, WorkflowMax is a project management system that integrates with Xero accounting, so that you can manage workflow, pay invoices and access your accounts from the same system. You will of course, need to train your staff to use this feature by uploading their data regularly so that the software is used to its optimum capacity.
- You’ll have access to fast accessibility. All your information is in one place and accessible instantly from your mobile device. No more searching your desk for a lost file, or driving across town to locate information for a client you left at the office. Most importantly, it cuts down the amount of time your staff spend waiting for documents to load and therefore an increase in productivity.
- The ability to store many different file types all in one place means a cloud-based service is perfect for creative agencies. Music, images, documents, sound-clips, spread sheets can all be stored collectively and streamed quickly with a high-speed internet connection. Transport these wherever you go to illustrate your work to your clients on your iphone or tablet.
- If disaster strikes, you can recover your data. If your computer network is infected, or your office is struck with a natural disaster like an earthquake or tsunami, you can still access your data from a remote device. Nothing is lost or destroyed, and you can continue operating from a remote location.
Embrace the technological capabilities of using a cloud-based service. It may just revolutionise the way you run your small business!