In the early days of online banking, there were some horror stories of accounts being hacked and access being denied through dodgy passwords. However, we’ve come a long way in terms of data security, and new security measures are added all the time as technology evolves.
It is understandable that we may be a little hesitant to be an ‘early adopter’ of other online applications, preferring instead to wait until all the bugs are ironed out. The truth is, you are already far behind the ‘early adopter’ stage, and if you wait too much longer you’ll miss out entirely!
The data security resources available to companies like Microsoft and Google are more impressive than any individual bank, and definitely more impressive than what your small business has. Their massive ‘server farms’ have around-the-clock security and state-of-the-art encryption…so how does your system rate against that?
The debate should then not be about how secure your records are, but how to best use the facilities and advantages that cloud applications and storage offer to a small business.
The advantages that we see are:
Ease of access – you don’t have to be tied down to your desktop…if you have an internet connection, you have access to your data.
Effective collaboration – you are no longer emailing documents to yourself and forever trying to remember what the latest version is! Version control, along with group editing and viewing, is very simple ‘in the cloud’.
Cost effective software – most cloud applications are subscription-based, so you pay a small monthly fee for use of the software. However, this also means you always have the latest versions, and it often also means you get a free trial to see if it works for you.
Integration – web developers today are generally all on the same page, so to speak, and this means that cloud applications work well together (more often than not, anyway). This means time saved for you and your business.
All these upsides do sound fantastic, but of course, don’t go jumping in without doing your research. Try a free trial or two and see if cloud software can improve your business systems…but don’t take too long, or any competitive advantage you may gain will be lost.