Investing in cloud services can provide many benefits to you and your organization, especially when work continuity and data loss prevention are major business concerns.
In some cases, cloud services require minimal IT equipment, eliminating the need to invest in multiple IT appliances, saving you a lot of money.
However, investing in cloud services is not only about purchasing and deploying those services. If you do not adequately manage the cloud or if the technology does not meet your organization’s goals and expectations, problems may occur.
This article discusses what cloud computing is and the ways that you can improve your cloud’s performance.
What Is Cloud Computing?
Cloud computing is the capability of IT resources to be available to the user on-demand. The services may vary, but when you hear about cloud computing, the first things that may come to your mind are off-premise data storage and collaboration tools.
Businesses and individuals that rely on data-heavy operations may benefit from cloud computing.
For individuals, some valuable benefits include:
Mobility: You can access cloud data through your smartphone or other mobile devices, allowing you to retrieve information wherever you are.
Flexibility: Being flexible means you can expand or contract your cloud-based requirements when you need them.
For example, you may expand your cloud storage instantly with a few mouse clicks. However, purchasing hard disks to boost your local server storage may take hours or days.
Data loss prevention: Sometimes, devices like computers, laptops, and mobile phones break or malfunction. When that happens, there’s a high risk of losing your data.
Storing your data on the cloud instead can minimize or prevent an event from occurring.
Meanwhile, cloud computing can provide the following advantages to businesses:
Cost savings: Some companies may be concerned about the initial costs to set up a cloud server. However, the long-term benefits may outweigh or even reduce the costs.
In addition, some cloud services are on a pay-as-you-go basis, meaning you only need to pay for services you need and then pay extra if you need more later.
Collaboration efficiency: Two or more employees may work on the same document in the cloud simultaneously. With the cloud’s capability for collaborative work, employees can save time and increase productivity.
Disaster recovery: Natural calamities (like earthquakes and floods) or manufactured disasters (like theft and arson) may place significant IT resources at risk and lead to critical data loss.
A cloud-based solution may prevent or reduce these types of risks and keep your necessary data secure and accessible in the face of disaster.
Competitive advantage: With the benefits that cloud services give to businesses, a company can gain an edge over its competitors.
Making use of the cloud before your business rivals do can place your company ahead of the curve. By the time these rivals finally see the benefits and try to catch up, you could already be way ahead of the competition.
Ways to Improve Cloud Performance
Cloud service providers often include various services to help you manage your cloud-based data. One of the most valuable services is performance monitoring.
By monitoring your cloud’s performance, you can see your data activity and the locations from where you access the data.
Monitoring also ensures that the necessary tools and services run correctly so that you do not encounter future problems.
Businesses using cloud services as a significant part of their operations may also find performance monitoring essential for IT maintenance. Preventive monitoring may eliminate potential breaches that may compromise files and important data.
Monitoring also allows businesses to create reports and audits that may later be useful in supporting an organization’s goals.
Automate Maintenance and Support Functions
Using cloud services may sometimes make it less convenient to perform regular maintenance manually. In addition, manually confirming a task completion every time can introduce potential errors to your data.
To prevent or minimize these risks, you can automate maintenance and support functions.
One benefit of automation is that you may focus more on your data and worry less about maintenance or data errors.
Put Data in the Appropriate Place
Some cloud users may opt for a hybrid solution, a combination of public cloud services and on-premise storage, such as a local server. While this may appear to be a redundant solution, a hybrid cloud has advantages.
In a hybrid cloud, you can keep the sensitive files on-premise and the less important ones in the public cloud. This method is practical for security and recovery purposes, especially when the cloud is inaccessible due to poor connectivity.
Having a hybrid cloud solution also provides work continuity. Employees can still access organizational data outside the central work location, allowing them to work even without going to the office.
Use the Appropriate Instance Types
Cloud providers often offer different instance types depending on your needs and workloads. Examples of some cloud instance types include the following:
Storage-optimized instance: This is for customers who need large databases and data analytics.
Memory-optimized instance: This is the same as storage-optimized but with a larger memory capacity to handle more extensive databases and complex data analytics.
Compute-optimized instance: This instance is helpful for organizations using application servers for faster batch processing of applications.
General-purpose instance: This is useful for general workloads in small or medium-sized companies. Such workloads have small databases, low-traffic websites, and non-manufacturing environments.
In the best-case scenario, cloud services can be instrumental in achieving your company’s goals, bringing higher productivity and profit while reducing long-term costs.
You can only achieve these benefits if the cloud services are appropriately managed and meet your company’s needs at the right price.
More importantly, a well-planned and well-managed cloud ensures that your organization’s investment in the technology becomes an asset that pays off several times over.
Consult a cloud services provider or IT expert for more information on cloud services and what instances may fit well with your company’s needs.