Gillian Livingstone| Business2community

In today’s ERP world, one of the main choices when choosing a business system – is would you like this to be on the cloud or located on a server in your office? From speaking to a variety of different companies, it is clear many people are divided, mainly an age divide.

What becomes more apparent is the lack of understanding of the cloud.

The cloud is used in many different aspects of your everyday life. The first cloud experience I had was my Hotmail account (and I wasn’t even aware I was using the cloud when I created my account) accessing my emails from any device and any time.

The next big realisation of the cloud is your iTunes account, streaming your music from all your different Apple accounts whether this was your Mac laptop, iPad or iPhone. Now we have the ability to pick up iMessages on your iPhone or iPad. All these features are down to the creation of the iCloud. Like me, I imagine most people in society would be lost without the ability to get my music at any time.

Another cloud feature is Dropbox, which allows you to store and share files online. In my university days documents would have had to be emailed, or if the file was too large it would be saved onto a USB, to share my files between different computers and people. This shows that cloud technology has changed the way we store our files in such a short period of time.

Is it unreasonable to think accessing your business information via the cloud is the next step?

With phones and tablets your never far from a work email or an important call that you have to take. Business is becoming 24 hours a day and your ‘out of office’ is merely irrelevant. With this happening, you will always need access to your CRM system to update communications, check financial information in your ERP system and check your KPIs. In order for this to happen, a cloud solution would be the preferred option to get visibility of the business information on any device, at any time.

Some people may argue, why should such business critical information be held somewhere out with their control, they would prefer this to be in their office where they can see this and hear the fans of the server running. On the other side, there is a risk of the server being stolen or damaged, where people know where it is.


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