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5 Ways to Make Cloud Computing Work for You

For many, “the cloud” is a familiar term, although many struggle to describe what it really is. Loosely, the cloud can refer to any number of servers accessed via an internet connection. Some people are familiar with the concept that it is a data storage center, but they aren’t aware of much more than that.

Recently, the need for more services that fall under the umbrella of cloud computing has grown. There are numerous ways to use cloud computing to your advantage, but there is undoubtedly a cloud computing service you can use regardless of your needs.

data stored in cloud fact

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing is a way to utilize computing services via the internet in any number of ways. These services are offered by a number of businesses and are becoming commonplace in business. It’s estimated that the market growth for cloud computing services well over doubled from 2016 to 2022 (see Figure 1).

To understand how to make cloud computing work for you, you’ll need to understand what services you need to utilize the cloud.

rapid growth of cloud computing chart

Common Services Available via Cloud Computing

In addition to the simple file storage applications that most people are acquainted with, there are scalable services available from many vendors that allow businesses to tailor cloud computing to their individual needs. So, whether you only need access to a specific application or need assistance with all aspects of your computing needs, there is a service in mind for you.

File Storage and Data Backup

These two services often go hand-in-hand, and it’s hard to talk about one without the other. File storage and data backup are two cloud computing services that most people are familiar with, with companies like Google and Dropbox offering storage services. These cloud computing services have been available for years, and most people have utilized them in one way or another.
Data backup is where file storage can become something more than simply storing documents. Data backup services often offer guaranteed protection of your data, shielding them from viruses, unexpected data losses through hardware failure, and encryption to protect them from prying eyes. In addition to this, the data backup process is often automated, needing no oversight from a person, whereas backing data up on an external drive would need supervision.


Infrastructure-as-a-service, or IaaS, is another common cloud computing service and is often identified as one of the most used types of cloud computing services. IaaS is the utilization of a vendor’s service and storage, networking services, and data centers. When choosing to use IaaS, you’ll still be responsible for the applications and tools that your computers will be using, as well as their operating systems.

IaaS is a great way to save on expenses for the necessary hardware to run a business, like servers, storage, and networking. So if you are looking to save money on capital costs when starting a business that needs these things to function, IaaS is the best choice for you.

Platform as a Service

Another common online cloud computing type is platform-as-a-service, or PaaS, which allows businesses to utilize environments to develop, test, and manage the applications that they are working on. Software developers often use PaaS services to help avoid the costs associated with developing a new application.
Using a PaaS service allows users to avoid having to pay for operating systems, servers and storage, networking resources, and data storage. The only thing that the user is responsible for is the code for the application being developed.

Software as a Service

While most people are familiar with file storage and data backup services, most are also patrons of some sort of software as a service, or SaaS. SaaS is the utilization of cloud-based applications or software. Email services fall under this category, and most people have an email address, meaning that they have used a SaaS service.
Other instances of SaaS services include monthly subscription-based programs, like Office 365 or the Adobe Creative Cloud. When using a SaaS service, you are responsible for nothing but paying for access to it, if needed. The vendor is responsible for the application and development of it, the operating system, servers and storage, networking resources, and the data center. It is often more cost-effective to pay for subscriptions to a cloud-based application than to pay for the licenses needed for each computer in a company. SaaS is an excellent way to save money and is easily scalable to fit the client’s needs.

Data Analytics

All businesses have some sort of data analytics needs. We live in the digital age, and businesses are constantly collecting data. Analyzing this data is crucial and often more demanding in terms of resources than the initial collection of the data. Cloud computing allows businesses to access the resources that vendors have to process power, making the analysis of large data sets a simple task rather than something that can take a large amount of in-house resources.

Typically, these services are on-demand and affordably priced, allowing companies to allocate funds to other company needs. The money that would have traditionally been spent on the hardware necessary to process these large datasets stays in the pocket of the business, with only a small percentage of it being paid to the vendor, which can make a world of difference in terms of budget.


What are the Benefits of Utilizing Cloud Computing?

While there are many benefits to using cloud computing services, here are the five most relevant to business owners and what makes cloud computing work for you.

1. Cost

No matter how you look at it, using a cloud computing service allows the user to save money. These savings are almost always associated with the initial hardware costs to set up servers and data centers and the required human resources. When using cloud computing, vendors provide the physical aspects for most computing needs and the IT expertise to keep them running smoothly. While the services offered are still paid for, they pale compared to the cost of setting up similar services in-house.

2. Performance

The high performance associated with cloud computing services can be attributed to the vendor handling all of the hardware related to the service. These vendors often have access to a network of high-performance data centers and computer hardware, allowing for faster processing times and, in turn, quicker computing than an in-house data center would.

3. Speed

The services offered by a cloud computing vendor are bound to be faster than in-house operations. The services they offer are preset and on-demand, ready-made for their clients. Even if the computing is complex, the system is typically set up for such computing, allowing the client to avoid the need to allocate resources to resource-heavy operations.

4. Productivity

Many, if not all, cloud computing services are prone to automatic updates and scheduled patching or maintenance. The vendor taking on these services allows any in-house IT staff to avoid meager tasks like software or application updates, leaving them to tend to more important matters that the client is responsible for. Additionally, these updates are seamless and meant to keep the client on the most recent product or service available, meaning that they won’t fall behind as software updates. This is a problem with purchasing individual licenses as opposed to paying for cloud computing services.

5. Security and Reliability

Cloud computing vendors understand the importance of keeping data safe, which causes them to implement numerous security features into their services. Keeping your data protected is one of the best ways to keep your costs down, as any sort of breach is costly. Additionally, these vendors are reliable, as they understand the responsibility they have to keep your data safe from loss. Often, if there is data loss, disaster recovery is more manageable than if it were to happen in-house, as they can keep the data backed up in several locations at any given time.

The Future of Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is a market that most, if not all, businesses cannot get away from. The required costs to initially set up all of the needed hardware and networking resources for a business can be higher than what is feasibly affordable, but many vendors have stepped in to fill the needs of these businesses. Their presence on the market allows businesses to avoid these initial costs and reduce the necessary hours for IT in-house. 

Cloud computing services are entirely scalable and applicable to all businesses. Whether you need access to office applications or an entire infrastructure to get your business started, there is an option available to you via cloud computing. It really comes down to your individual needs and determining what options are best for you.

At Edge Networks, we’ve made many of our clients ’ transition to the cloud easier and more secure. Contact us today for a free 30 minute consultation.


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