Cloud computing is nothing but sharing and using resources on a complex network, a virtual space like the internet. For example, saving a file on Google Drive, SkyDrive or Dropbox. Cloud computing ensures reduction in costs by having everything on the virtual space rather than investing on the latest expensive hardware.
It is usually the larger organizations that utilize the power of the cloud in a better way owing to their substantial technical scope and resources. On the other hand Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) lack the resources, expertise, platforms and the infrastructure to completely exploit the power of the cloud to gain competitive advantage. The good news though, is that cloud computing offers these SMEs an option to pay as per their needs and usage. This flexibility is the feature that is most required in today’s rapidly changing business environment which demands innovation and adaptation to the latest technologies. This flexibility ensures that SMEs control wastage of traditional computing methods. In other words, cloud computing can be easily be put to use at a much lower cost when compared to traditional methods where the cost of infrastructure is huge.
With the concept of cloud computing being accepted and used widely, even the SMEs can now compete in newer and larger markets with large manufacturers. The availability of low cost processes, grid computing, and enterprise systems help different activities and operations of SMEs. It is imperative that SMEs understand the potential benefit of cloud computing, and when this is done right they will be able to access different IT infrastructures, platforms, etc. that only big organizations could afford.
Cloud computing for small businesses can reduce their operational and functional costs. They have the advantage of being extremely mobile and flexible in their operations. Some of the current reliable providers of cloud services are Amazon, Microsoft, Dell, Oracle, IBM, and Salesforce.
Growth of SMEs is important for the country’s economic development. But financial dependency and lack of capital resources force these industries to find cheaper, yet good processes and technologies which can improve their profitability. Cloud computing is a great IT solution for SMEs and they should choose the model which suits their needs and business model the best.
Cloud computing for small business yields high Return on Investment (ROI) when compared to the traditional computing methods as the expenditure is lower. The upward and downward scalability that is provided to the SMEs gives them a great agility and thus giving them a competitive edge against larger and established players in the market.