There’s a lot of hype around cloud computing, and justifiably so. Faster, increasingly mobile business models are emerging, and software tools are quick to accommodate. But, as appealing as these SaaS systems might be, identifying those that matter most is difficult.
If your business is seeking more flexibility, an improved customer experience (CX), and a better way to utilize organizational knowledge, a deep-dive into the cloud solutions discussed here is a great place to start.
Speaking of employees and customers, cloud computing is improving experiences for both. From the consumer side, data is revealing just how important a good experience is. In fact, CX is expected to be the #1 factor in buying decisions by the end of 2020.
For your teammates, the right cloud systems will create a better work environment and easier collaboration. And perhaps most exciting of all, emerging AI solutions are eliminating monotonous tasks that monopolize the time of millions of talented people.
The right tools for YOUR business.
Low-key sales pitch aside, teams ultimately have to decide which tools will have the biggest ROI. While it varies from business to business, there are a few tools that are widely regarded as must-haves.
Discussed below are a few of said must-haves, and just enough information to (ideally) pique your interest. If you’ve been keeping your eyes peeled for ways to increase productivity and lower costs (who isn’t?), keep reading!
1. Security + mobility with cloud drive.
Of all the cloud technology discussed here, a cloud drive is probably the most universally familiar. Starting with personal services like iCloud, cloud-based storage of content, data, and sensitive information has rapidly expanded in the last decade.
As more companies endorse flexible work policies, mobile information access becomes indispensable. By storing organizational knowledge on remote servers, teams can resume workflow from anywhere with an internet connection.
On the topic of security, cloud drives are light-years ahead of most in-house systems. Moreover, the subscription model affords SMBs with enterprise-level data protection at a fraction of the cost of a similar in-house solution.
- Modern cloud infrastructures featuring robust encryption, complete data privacy, and GDPR, CCPA, and SOC 2 compliance are drastically more secure than most local solutions.
- According to a recent report, 46% of organizations that endure a privacy breach claim their reputation and brand value was damaged as a result.
- Remote work has grown roughly 160% since 2005.
2. Expediting work with RPA.
Robotic process automation (RPA) is probably more closely related to common expectations of AI-infused cloud-computing services. Simply put, RPA is popular because it saves businesses time and money.
RPA systems allow you to digitize the various tasks performed throughout your work, and automate the most repetitive of them. By eliminating monotonous activities, your team’s free to focus on higher ROI activities. Best of all, state-of-the-art RPA workflow tools feature a simple drag-and-drop interface.
A great use case for this cloud-based tech exists within your human resources department. RPA can automate the onboarding process and deliver benefits documents and training modules to new team members without any human involvement.
- Data breaches were responsible for exposing 4.1 billion records in the first six months of 2019.
- Cyber attacks are regarded as one of the top-ten threats to global stability.
- Supply chain attacks increased by nearly 80% in 2018 alone.
3. Faster facts with spreadsheet mining.
One of the leading AI-powered cloud-computing benefits is the ability to quickly locate mission-critical info through a chat portal. With a spreadsheet mining tool, teams can search for the info they need in real time.
Though that idea might not flood your brain with adrenaline, think of all the use cases where it could bolster a competitive edge. From customer service tickets to project management, the ability to instantly access data empowers teams to make quick, well-informed decisions.
- The average employee spends 9.3 hours a week searching for information.
- Bad data costs businesses up to $14.2 million annually.
- Teams waste roughly 20% of the workweek digging for data they need to do their jobs.
4. Accessible information with application integration.
Last but not least in our list of popular cloud-computing tools is app integration. As businesses deploy software for e-commerce, CRM, project management and more, the data contained in each can be difficult to utilize.
Too often, disparate programs force teams to spend hours digging for answers. As the native search tool can only return the info within a said program, efficient fact-finding is nearly impossible.
Offered as a cloud-based SaaS tool, app integration eliminates these information silos. Through a user-friendly chatbot, teams can instantly search dozens of applications for the knowledge they need.
- On average, employees switch between mission-critical applications 35 times a minute.
- It takes over 23 minutes to refocus after a workflow distraction, such as switching to a new program.
- According to a State of Workforce Management survey, 65% of executives believe information silos cause major collaboration barriers between departments.