Nowadays, computers and other technological infrastructure are at the heart of day-to-day business operations. The use of computer hardware in business has increased drastically over the years.
One study showed that between 2007 and 2018, the share of employees in the UK using computers with internet access at work went from an average of 42% to 63%. With the year that we have had in 2020, we can only imagine how much this must have grown since. Since everything is going online the share will be over 70% by 2022.
Where all this is leading to? The unnecessary need for new hardware. It can be easy to think that to innovate you need to invest money in new hardware. However, this is not always the case. At the same rate that computers in the workplace are increasing, innovative software is beginning to resort to the cloud.
What is the cloud?
Cloud computing is when a computer system resource is available on-demand without direct active management from the user. In other words, the cloud is a virtual data center (a building that houses computers, components, telecommunications, storage, and so on).
A cloud can be public, or it can be limited to single organizations. Modern cloud infrastructures in businesses can allow you to have all the benefits of innovative technology, without the need for new physical hardware.
Why don’t I need new hardware?
By using a cloud infrastructure, new software can be deployed easily and immediately. This is because cloud computing is all done virtually. This means that all you need is an app or a web portal which is usually downloaded onto a laptop, computer, or smartphone.
This, of course, can drastically lower IT start-up costs, and in turn, will reduce the need to continually replace any hardware. Updates can be installed as quickly as that on a phone. If the software rolls out an update, you can accept it, and it gets immediately updated.
Using cloud-based software also allows you more flexibility. No matter where your staff is in the world, they can have access to your company’s computer service. However, this can need the use of a VPN, which everyone knows can be very temperamental and can be not very secure.
A new model called zero trust takes all the assumed trust out of a network. Instead of a user assuming a computer network is safe, or the network assuming the user is who they say they are, a user must be authenticated before logging onto the network. Once on the network, everything is then secure.
Also, when you decide to upscale or downsize your business, or indeed move offices, there’s the hassle of having to move all your computers and phones with you, and switch all of your plans and tariffs. Most cloud computing works on a pay as you go service, allowing you to only pay for what you need. You can also move offices with barely any hassle.
So, even if you are a forward-thinking business that always needs the newest model, you don’t always need to upgrade your hardware. Instead, look to cloud-based software that will allow you greater flexibility, immediate virtual installation, instant upgrades, with the added bonus of less start-up and running costs.