Cloud Computing has brought a whole world of new possibilities when it comes to managing business workloads effectively. For this very reason, the adoption of cloud solutions by businesses has consistently shown robust growth. As is the case with most technologies, you have to see the whole picture to make an informed decision.

Pros & Cons of Cloud Computing Businesses

In this post, we will highlight some of the major pros and cons of cloud computing. This in turn will assist your business in arriving at the right conclusion.

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Cloud Benefits

Here are a few reasons why you should seriously consider availing a Cloud Based Solution or Service.

Staff Education

Accessibility

Modern cloud solutions are designed around a wide array of accessibility options. Employees can login to their work using multiple device platforms, regardless of physical location. All one needs is a decent internet connection and a login device such as smartphone, tablet, laptop or PC.

Vendor Lock-In

Costs

When a business decides to migrate to the cloud, cost saving is a high priority consideration. In case of the cloud, organizations no longer have to maintain capital intensive data centers in house. In most such cases, hardware is the sole responsibility of your Cloud Service Provider (CSP).

In this way, businesses can focus more on their core area of expertise. In the absence of an elaborate hardware on premise, organizations also save a lot of operational costs incurred on extracting optimal performance from such hardware, especially in the case of small to mid-sized entities.

Integration

Disaster Recover (DR)

Any cloud solution can also serve as an effective Disaster Recovery (DR) mechanism. Firstly, it is readily accessible in case of any disruption. Secondly, you data resides over an external infrastructure in the data centers of some CSP. Businesses can easily leverage cloud computing as a robust DR mechanism.

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Unpredictable Costs

Scalability

Cloud solutions are offered purely on usage basis. A CSP has a vast pool of computing and storage resources that are instantly accessible for an additional usage fee. The cloud is extremely useful for businesses that experience seasonal trends during the course of business operations.

In cases where the demand for computing resources declines, a business can instantly scale down its usage of CSP’s resources. The rapid scalability of cloud solutions make them a highly viable proposition, purely from an operational stand point.

Unpredictable Costs

Speed

Cloud solutions are built around state of the art hardware. The cloud management software that allocate resources are also designed for optimization. With the proper enterprise infrastructure in place such as bandwidth, a cloud based solution can rival the performance delivered by any on premise solution.

Unpredictable Costs

Sustainability

IT hardware has some of the highest obsolescence rates. In case of a cloud solution, hardware is the sole responsibility of the CSP. With hardware maintenance and up gradation costs out of the equation, an organization can greatly increase the lifespan of its existing hardware, as minimal resources are used on site.

Drawbacks of the Cloud

Below are a few reasons you should avoid availing a cloud computing solution.

Unpredictable Costs

Remote Workforce

To improve efficiency and increase employee motivation, organizations these days are promoting remote workforce. For businesses, cloud computing is the perfect enabler for providing a secure, efficient and compliant productivity platform to employees that is independent of the constraints to time and space.

Unpredictable Costs

Security

The internet is infested with cyber threats. Every now and then, we hear news about data breaches that affect millions of users. When an organization moves to the cloud, it has to entrust its data to the CSP. This raises serious concerns about security of your business critical or sensitive data.

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Unpredictable Costs

Privacy

When a business embraces the cloud, it has to transfer its data over the CSP’s data center. If your data is of a sensitive nature, it may raise privacy concerns. Even otherwise, regulations around privacy are getting more stringent with every passing day.

Unpredictable Costs

Performance

CSPs allocate computing resources to businesses purely on the basis of their estimated workloads. In situations where heavy computing or storage is required, most CSPs will charge an incremental fee and inflate the cost of the otherwise viable solution.

Unpredictable Costs

Cyber Attacks

The data centers of CSPs are a soft target for cyber criminals as vast amounts of data is stored at a central location. This feature in turn makes CSP data centers highly susceptible to cyber attacks. The situation gets even more complicated if the data involved is of personal or sensitive nature.

Unpredictable Costs

Management of Data

To fully avail the potential for a cloud solution, most businesses have to migrate their business critical data over the cloud infrastructure. There are generally data integration challenges as this is entirely a new infrastructure. Such bottlenecks may also adversely affect organizational efficiency.

Unpredictable Costs

Long term Costs

To objectively analyze the benefits of a cloud based solution, you will have to consider the long term costs of availing it. No matter how large sums of money you pay a CSP as usage fee, you will never end up owning the hardware of that CSP itself. You will have to weigh the long term costs with owning the hardware and then decide.

Unpredictable Costs

Compliance

Regulations around data storage and management are getting much stringent with every passing day. Before you entrust your data and business critical info to a CSP, you will have to ensure it meets region’s and industry’s regulations in true letter and spirit.

Unpredictable Costs

Dependency on Internet

In most cases, a business will avail its cloud based solution through the internet. Over the internet, there is always a tug of war between users for the limited bandwidth available. This in turn will adversely affect or even jeopardize business critical functions.

Conclusion

We have presented both the pros and cons of cloud computing solutions so that you can make a well informed decision on whether to avail the cloud infrastructure. In theory, the benefits of reliable cloud computing solutions tend to outwit the more traditional approach of maintaining in house hardware.

Secondly, once a business decides to adopt the cloud, the daunting challenge of selecting the most appropriate CSP has just begun. Instead of focusing on good and bad CSPs, you should give more weightage to the fact that which of the many CSPs available in the market will be most suitable for your organizational needs.