The change is undoubtedly a double-edged sword for companies, on the one hand, it offers unprecedented opportunities to boost revenue, but it also presents challenges for operations and infrastructure. Change comes in many forms, it can be new products, customer and supplier segments, as well as mergers and acquisitions or expansion into other geographies.
They all provide opportunities for growth, but only if you are in a position to take advantage of them. The key to greater success is to embrace change, using it as an opportunity to improve processes and not getting stuck in existing infrastructure. There is nothing more frustrating than seeing an opportunity in the market and not being able to take advantage of it. Or try to take advantage of it, but not be able to execute it well enough for everyone to achieve their potential. Increasingly, cloud technology is considered an essential tool so that change is not a threat but an opportunity.
Understanding the scope of the cloud is essential. Imagine the following:
■ Open new offices and acquire new businesses without having to worry about buying servers or managing multiple technology platforms.
■ Expand or contract capacity smoothly to accommodate seasonal or cyclical variations.
■ Reduce the burden on IT and allow valuable staff to focus on more strategic activities.
■ Enable employees to work the way they live, on mobile devices, and from wherever they are.
Infor discusses 5 key ways cloud solutions make businesses more agile:
When IT resources are focused on maintaining existing infrastructure and on-premises solutions, they inevitably find themselves stuck in a reactive operational mode, the mere task of maintaining the status quo oftentimes an overwhelming effort. As a result, a struggle is generated to achieve more strategic initiatives that facilitate change in the organization. Cloud solutions help achieve fundamental changes in IT, enabling organizations to take risks, pursue new business opportunities without adding expensive infrastructure. You can also take advantage of innovative new functionality faster and cheaper than ever. If an initiative is successful it can easily be applied on a larger scale. If it fails, the project can quickly be aborted. This unprecedented level of flexibility makes companies more likely to implement innovative ideas, not just within IT but throughout the organization. Companies are clearly recognizing the potential of the cloud.
two. empower workers
In order for staff to perform their tasks better, faster and more flexibly, they often turn to systems outside of official IT applications. They use personal mobile devices to connect to the corporate network. They also use file sharing accounts and project management tools to work together. That is, workers implement their own cloud solutions for ease of use and necessary functionality that they don’t get from IT. A recent Frost & Sullivan study shows that more than 80% of respondents (IT and other large enterprise employees) use unapproved cloud applications at work.
These apps aren’t necessarily bad, but if used incorrectly or without proper security they can expose businesses to unnecessary risk, intellectual property theft, data loss, and damage to business reputations. How can the cloud help? With the right apps in the cloud, organizations help their employees get things done better, faster, smarter and more collaboratively. The result: reduced business risk as employees no longer need to look elsewhere for resources to optimize their performance.
3. Foster global growth
For many organizations, emerging markets and remote locations mean great opportunity. However, being able to take advantage of them can be complex and expensive, you must get the right technicians, install the equipment to be able to establish operations.
If this is combined with the fact that there are many variables such as:
What skills are needed to support business systems?
What types of regulations and reporting requirements must be met?
Cloud solutions allow companies to quickly establish new operations or expand existing ones in any region without having to be physically there, reducing both capital investment and risk.
They also achieve better results by allowing remote offices to operate seamlessly with other business units and locations, making it easy to share information regardless of location. And considering that an organization is working with a robust cloud solution it can probably support multiple languages and currencies, which makes localization even easier.
4. Simplify compliance
Staying aligned with constantly changing software, security, and regulations is complex, manual, and expensive. It is an overwhelming effort and yet companies have no choice but to do their best to comply in a timely manner. This is an area where cloud solutions provide extraordinary benefits for companies that want to increase productivity and reduce risk. In a cloud solution, security and compliance updates are automatically received throughout the organization and are rarely available. Not only does this simplify the process, it also ensures that everyone in the company has access to the most up-to-date information and tools to do their jobs efficiently.
Taking advantage of this opportunity is important for all companies, but it is especially vital for highly regulated companies such as pharmaceuticals and healthcare. It also has many advantages for companies that operate in multiple countries, with different rules and challenges that can be complex and costly.
5. Achieve 24x7x365 service
In today’s economy, equipment downtime means lost revenue. Companies cannot take their critical applications offline. If a customer can’t do business with a company, the competition will be more than happy to replace it. In a world that is always connected, it is imperative for companies to always be available
A suitable cloud solution will be available 24x7x365, regardless of the location of the employees or the devices they use. Cloud providers’ equipment is more reliable than what enterprises would use for their premise-based solutions, and can achieve levels of uptime that are hard to match.
According to Dun & Bradstreet, 59% of Fortune 500 companies experience approximately 1.6 hours of downtime per week 3. That’s more than 70 hours per day per year, costing more than $46 million in annual losses in cost alone. labor. If a disruption occurs, having backups along with trained staff means cloud providers can quickly restore service and ensure data recovery.
The new IT reality is here and has brought unprecedented agility to users, businesses, and the marketplace. With cloud solutions, companies have an opportunity to transform the way they operate, not only technically but in all aspects of the business internally as well as with their suppliers and customers. The race has already begun and the companies that take the lead are the ones that will have the best chance of winning.
By José Rivero, Country Manager of Infor Mexico
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.