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Cloud Computing – 3 advantages beyond lower costs

Cloud computing is now a well-established business practice in NZ. In 2013, 88% of NZ organisations already accessed emails via the cloud. Many businesses understand the financial advantages of using the cloud. Large, irregular, forecasted Capex can be replaced by smooth, predictable Opex spending. Using cloud-based services to host your desktop, CRM, analytics and business intelligence is increasingly common. Senior executives have been quick to grasp the cost advantages.

The next step is leveraging the cloud to build organisation-wide competitive advantages. What other aspects of your organisation should migrate (and when), to serve your customers better, faster, cheaper? How can the cloud help differentiate your products and services? As the market shifts, how can the cloud’s enormous compute identify changing customer needs, target new segments and expand into new markets? Rather than just applying the cloud for greater efficiency – how can it actually fuel growth?

1 – Increase collaboration by removing constraints

Working in the cloud removes the constraints of location and time that may be currently hindering your team. It lets your staff work from practically anywhere with an internet connection.

Better still, true collaboration across your business can result – fostering innovation. Project teams can be brought together to share their knowledge, tapping on once remote expertise and drawing on their collective wisdom. This expertise may have been too niche or costly to engage, up to now. Your organisation can benefit from increasing scale and specialization.

The Ministry of Education uses ICONZ-Webvisions’ cloud-based services to bring remote schools together, and provide access to learning materials not otherwise available locally. Through interactive e-learning, students can learn from specialist teachers dotted around the country.

2 – Big data-driven decisions

The cloud can be used to process enormous amounts of raw (big) data. The cloud’s elastic computing capacity can be applied to expansive data sets. Such data analysis can result in key insights and trends not yet apparent to your competitors.

Organisations use the cloud to dig through their big data, learning customer preferences and delivering more relevant offers. Businesses leverage the cloud to interact with massive customer bases, and analyze data that would’ve previously been too costly or even impossible.

“Big data analysis is really driving the next wave of cloud adoption. Clients see opportunities earlier, react and scale accordingly.” – Jack Talbot, ICONZ-Webvisions NZ GM

Similar to collaboration, information once held on branch servers and employees’ hard-drives, can now be shared across the organisation. This can draw out insights, leading to better decisions. Furthermore, the cloud makes these insights available when and where it’s needed. It enables businesses to get relevant information at key decision points – guiding pro­cesses and decision makers with automated analysis in real time.

3 – Increasing agility

The scalability of cloud-based resources is already well known. Your organisation can seamlessly handle unexpected demand spikes (or troughs) at will – since these resources are virtual.

This is especially true for software developers. Animoto, an Amazon-owned start-up expanded from 50 to 3500 virtual servers within 3 days. The cloud reduces developers’ time to market. You can prototype new applications faster, gaining feedback and fail-faster, all at lower overall costs.

Invest in your competencies

If your organisation’s core competency does not lie in IT infrastructure, why invest in these skill sets? Consider developing your organisation’s core competencies instead – whether it’s in R&D, marketing, logistics or manufacturing. To discuss how the cloud drives efficiency and fuels growth, call ICONZ-Webvisions on 0800 843 638 or email

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