100% Cloud? The Role Skeptics Play
Here are three reasons skeptics should make the switch to cloud-based communications.
Few doubt the cloud's immense growth as we proceed through 2015 and beyond, but predicting just how quickly we'll reach full adoption is hard for anybody.
While a few cloud skeptics remain, the cloud has proven its worth by prompting a radical shift in how we work, shop, communicate and, ultimately, live. A 2014 RightScale survey revealed massive cloud adoption, up to 94% at times, but how long will it take to reach complete adoption? And is it possible to reach 100% and ditch legacy systems and servers altogether?
Server huggers and late adopters have been reluctant to jump in wholeheartedly because of reasons ranging from regulatory compliance issues to fears about data security. They point to cloud mishaps to legitimize their concerns. But when an organization adopts stringent business processes and workflows to ensure proper access, authentication, security, and monitoring, the cloud has proven itself as a sustainable platform for businesses of all shapes and sizes.
To the skeptics who are still not convinced, the cloud has come a long way, and here are three things you need to know about why you should make the switch.
- The control factor - Server huggers have been reluctant to migrate to the cloud, afraid of losing control of hardware, servers, and storage. Yet organizations not using cloud technology end up controlled by these devices and storage issues, unable to gain remote access to software and data. Yes, it is risky to make the switch if your company's IT is not prepared and ready to migrate. However, if the proper precautions and protocols are in place to migrate, the cloud actually gives system administrators, managers, and employees even more control.
- What can't you build in the cloud? - In recent years, software integrations that completely change our workflow have been possible thanks in part to the cloud. While rolling out new platforms in the traditional hardware-software setting takes time, resources and staff, rolling out technology in the cloud allows an organization to reduce those expenditures and more quickly find what works best for its needs. The ability to build on the cloud has led to solutions that function better than their legacy counterparts. Quality of over-the-top solutions, such as those providing cloud-based communications, is not an issue despite what laggards would like you to believe. They are readily available as practicable technologies for businesses based in the cloud.
- Building a better workplace - In recent years the flexible and distributed workforce has necessitated quality communications tools and access to company files at home and on the go. As we move away from the traditional workplace format, freelancers, remote workers, and workers taking their laptops home to continue working in the evening or on vacations all demand quality technology that allows them access from wherever, whenever. In recent years, the cloud and the technologies built upon the cloud for the mobile workforce have made it possible to support the new kind of workforce without compromising security or costs.
Early adopters have witnessed the cost-savings benefits of the cloud, with 84% of CIOs reporting they've cut application costs by moving to the cloud, according to a report by Integra. Now that the quality of technology has caught up, skeptics are having a difficult time winning the debate.
Early market skepticism, in part, forced cloud companies to improve their technology at an extremely rapid rate with the aim of addressing the hesitancy businesses had over storing valuable customer, personal, and employee data outside of the enterprise. But now, as we look to reach 100% migration, it's time for the skeptics to take the plunge as well.
Kira Makagon is executive vice president of innovations at RingCentral.