The buzz around cloud never seems to die down. From the time the technology was first introduced, it has unremittingly enabled organizations to enable better efficiencies. While early benefits focused on how cloud helped eliminate massive CapEx, over the years, the emphasis moved towards better availability, flexibility, and security of on-demand resources. Today, the technology has taken center stage in every C-suite’s tête-à-tête on digital transformation, and for all the right reasons!
According to Gartner, worldwide spending on public cloud services is forecast to grow 18.4% in 2021 to a total of $304.9 billion, up from $257.5 billion in 2020!
Cloud and Digital Transformation: Two Peas in a Pod
What is digital transformation? In technical terms, it is the digitization of everyday business processes: right from the modernization of monolithic systems, adoption of data analytics, implementation of new tools, and more. But in business terms, it is the ability of organizations to make their business reliable, resilient, and agile, so they can meet the fluctuating needs of customers, keep pace with changing market trends, and deliver unmatched services (and experiences) much before their competitors.
No matter how businesses look at it, successful (or failed) digital transformation is directly linked to the effectiveness of their IT service delivery environments. Although traditional, on-premises IT environments have long enabled organizations to operate their business using a robust foundation, in today’s constantly changing business landscape, these on-premises systems miss the mark. Not only are they inflexible; they also lack the scalability and integration capabilities that the modern era demands.
Traditional on-premises systems also fail at dealing with the rate and pace of data explosion that is currently happening, making the case for cloud extremely strong! Cloud, through its unmatched reliability, flexibility, scalability, and security capabilities delivers the level of insight, action, and engagement that is needed to deliver continued value. Serving as the foundation of the new agile business landscape, cloud is key to delivering flexible, on-demand access to resources underpinning innovative digital business offerings.
Here’s what makes cloud a must-have component in digital transformation:
- Scale to meet increased (or reduced) demand: Successful digital transformation goes far beyond implementing a handful of modern systems. It requires organizations to be able to scale to meet increased or reduced demand. Since cloud offers anytime, anywhere access to on-demand resources, it allows businesses to keep up with demand – without a hole in their pockets! Since you only pay for the resources you use, you can easily meet demand spikes and troughs and continue to wow your customers while reducing the risks of wasted IT resources.
- Agility to react to new business priorities: Digital transformation requires organizations to be responsive to changing business requirements. This means being able to access (and even provision) resources as and when the need arises. Since cloud is a treasure trove of data and resources, it allows for quick provisioning of storage and compute resources – in a matter of a few minutes. Whether you need to quickly introduce new features or instantly generate a trend report, with cloud you can do all and react to new business priorities with ease and agility.
- Decision-making that relies on hard data: Of all the capabilities cloud offers, the ability to bring data from different departments, business units, and teams into a unified location takes the cake! With cloud, you no longer have to worry about extracting data from siloed systems. Since all data is constantly consolidated and updated from different systems in a central location, you can base all your decisions on hard data – and not just on your gut feeling. This means you can use hard facts and metricsto guide strategic business decisions and ensure they constantly align with your business goals and objectives.
- Collaboration across the enterprise: In a digital world, employees must be able to interact and communicate with their peers – irrespective of where they are located. Cloud, through its collaboration capabilities, brings teams together from all over the world. It enables geographically-dispersed teams to work together on documents or projects in real-time, driving richer and stronger teamwork. Since employees can view, edit, and share content instantly, it helps increase interest and engagement.
- Immediate backup and restore for business continuity: The modern business landscape requires organizations to ensure their systems and services are operational 24x7. With unlimited storage capabilities, cloud allows for continuous backup of data to avoid the irreplaceable impact of data loss and ensure a high level of operational performance. Since any issue, outage, or breakdown triggers the backup system instantaneously, normal operations are immediately restored, helping protect productivity, revenue, reputation, and even customers.
In today’s world of continuous evolution, the only way for organizations to succeed is by aligning their resources and strategies with the digital business environment. With all its benefits, cloud is a driving catalyst of digital transformation, allowing organizations to deliver promising products and capable customer experiences.
It helps organizations scale their business as per demand, delivers the agility to react to changing business priorities, and enables data-driven decision-making. It also fosters rich communication across the enterprise while allowing organizations to ensure real-time backup for continued business success.
- Anurag Sinha, Co-founder and Managing Director at Wissen Technology