Cloud services and cloud storage providers offer valuable services and IT solutions to businesses of all types and sizes. From storage to software installation to security, cloud hosting services are taking the web hosting world by a storm. Modern organizations operating in a highly complex and dynamic business environment can immensely benefit from comprehensive cloud services—hosted applications, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS) among other things—but the actual transition often begins with data storage needs.
All businesses, small or large, are increasingly making use of online cloud storage for their data storage and retrieval needs. This factor becomes more pronounced for smaller companies who lack the resources to maintain an IT infrastructure which can securely store their sensitive data in their own data center.
From the flexibility they get of accessing their data anytime and from anywhere to increased cooperation and productivity, not to mention additional security, cloud storage offers a host of distinct advantages.
In the following paragraphs we shall look at different important features and benefits offered by cloud storage that makes such an attractive option for storing digital data.
Cloud storage—what is it?
Cloud storage is a service where data is remotely stored, managed and backed up by servers belonging to the online cloud storage service provider. Quality service providers offer the option of securely transmitting data and receiving them via a public network like Internet. Files and documents are stored online and they can be accessed from anywhere with the help of an internet connection.
Research reports and studies conducted by leading organizations is a strong pointer towards the fast growing popularity of cloud storage and the heightened prominence they are going to achieve in near future.
With increased demand in Cloud, an estimate reveals that by 2017, public cloud services will exceed $240 billion.
Keeping all these factors in mind, we shall now look at some of the important advantages and features benefits offered by cloud storage.
Enhanced employee productivity
Online storage allows an organization’s employee to work from almost anywhere provided they have an internet connection. Remote data storage eliminates the restriction imposed on data accessing by location. Online storage provides team members the freedom to work from anywhere (home, coffee shops, client facilities) and still have access to any needed documents or information. Enhanced mobility provides for better communication and coordination amidst office workers. In a globalized workplace where employees may be working from different locations, online storage allows you to work efficiently and make meaningful contribution to office work. Before the advent of cloud storage, working outside the office could be problematic and more time consuming than necessary. For example, you saved your files on your office desktop which could be accessed only when you are in office.
Another major advantage offered by cloud storage is better mobility. If you have multiple devices you work from – i.e. smartphone, tablet, laptops and desktop computer – you won’t have to worry about having the latest file available on each device. You can get the latest and updated copy of your files on any device because the files are not saved on local system or phone hardware.
Online data storage provides a far higher level of security, especially for smaller organizations who cannot afford the prohibitive cost of maintaining their own data center. Even if you store the data in your data center, the threat of losing your business data owing to some unforeseen event or calamity is ever present. Cloud storage eliminates this possibility as there is no single point of failure in the cloud because your data is backed up to multiple servers, so if one server crashes, your data is safe because it is stored in other locations.
No server maintenance
This could also be counted as another prime advantage of online data storage. Organizations are spared the trouble of hiring specialist IT staff to look after their servers and ensure that it is safe and performing optimally. Servers are expensive to purchase and often more to maintain. Using cloud storage services frees organizations from the burden of spending additional money on hiring of server support personnel.