MBA Infographics

Cloud Computing in Small Business

To learn more about cloud computing in small business, checkout the infographic below created by New Jersey Institute of Technology.

Cloud computing is one of the major technological buzzwords of the mid-2010s, and one that is certainly accompanied by no shortage of hype. Cloud usage is often claimed to improve every aspect of technology and computing, with hundreds of firms lining up to declare that they have truly figured out how to leverage this type of computing. Instead of dealing only with empty claims, though, it is better to examine what this type of computing has actually done for the business world. A quick look at what cloud computing is and what it can accomplish may allow you to separate reality from the fiction surrounding cloud computing. To learn more, checkout this infographic created by the New Jersey Institute of Technology’s Online MBA in Information Systems program.

Cloud Computing in Small Business

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing is a process that allows users access to a certain set of shared resources. Data stored in the cloud, specifically on servers, is accessible from almost anywhere, and can be used on demand. It’s a measured service, one that is easily used and takes advantage of pooled resources to create something greater than the sum of its parts. There’s a reason cloud computing is often advertised as the future of business – it simply works in a manner that makes sense for businesses that are becoming more and more dependent on having access to data.

Who Uses It – And How?

While the cloud is used quite often in the consumer world, it seems to have really found its niche in the world of business. There are few sectors that don’t take advantage of cloud computing in one way or another. Most businesses – about half – use the cloud as software, but it also functions as a platform, infrastructure, or even as simple data. Most businesses tend to use a mix of public and private clouds to accomplish their tasks, with the rest using a fully public model and a small minority making use of fully private clouds. Hybrid usage seems to be the ideal model for moving forward in the future.

The Growth of Cloud Computing

The growth of cloud computing is remarkably easy to chart, especially if you look at yearly growth figures. 2013 saw cloud usage by up to 43% of all American small businesses, with a total economic weight of about twenty-four billion dollars. That number is growing – up to 70% of small businesses foresee themselves moving to the cloud with the next two years, and nearly 80% of all businesses should be using the cloud in some way by the end of 2020. Indeed, only a small portion of the business world is ignorant of the cloud as of 2014 – only 9% of those surveyed didn’t know what the cloud was.

With that growth in mind, it is important to examine why small businesses seem to find the cloud so terribly important. A slight majority depend on the system as a more reliable method of data backup and disaster recovery, while many also access the cloud because it provides round the clock access to data and applications. Other relevant reasons for growth include the lower cost of cloud computing, the lack of on-site infrastructure investment needed, and the fact that cloud usage is actually quite flexible.

The Benefits of Cloud Computing

Above all else, the cloud brings with it benefits to small businesses. It is as useful for e-commerce and marketing as it is for customer care and human resources, and provides businesses with the tools that they need to expand their operations and grow at a respectable rate. Whether the goal is to seek out better sales tools or give the IT department more support, the cloud seems to be able to do it all.

The numbers don’t lie when it comes to improvements, either. Cloud users reported an increased ability to move into new markets, increased simplification and better usage of internal resources, faster initiative rollouts, better connectivity for employees and even the ability to better analyze and act on data. Indeed, the cloud seems to work as something of a cure-all for those businesses looking to increase their efficacy through the use of better technology.

Understanding the cloud means understanding how businesses are growing. It’s not enough to know that it is there – one has to understand what it does and how it can be beneficial. The numbers don’t lie, and having access to the right information can change your mind on whether your business should be making use of cloud computing. If you’re still unconvinced, you may want to take a look at the data below.

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