Had I ever envisioned writing a post discussing the benefits of life in the cloud in 2016 when I was a kid, it surely would have included historical (or futuristic?) references to, “The Jetsons,” or Cloud City from, “The Empire Strikes Back,” because that’s how I imagined living in a cloud was supposed to be like by now.

But as unfortunate as it is that we still live very much on the ground, the idea that we connect so much of our daily personal lives to a virtual hub called the Cloud is both fascinating and like something that could be out of a science fiction novel itself. And its ease of use for things like making bank transactions or posting status updates isn’t relegated to just our personal lives—below are five ways the Cloud can be both cost-effective and efficient in the office.

  1. Your Security. For better or worse, we live in a time when even the most casual internet users have become hyperaware of their online security settings. Because Cloud Computing is projected to be more than a $100B business by 2018, companies are adhering to stricter standards of doing business in regards to things like authentication, certifications, security patches and the like—meaning it’s safe and only getting safer. Plus, if you’ve ever had your laptop stolen or lost, you wouldn’t need to scramble to recall any of the sensitive data that went away with it, as it would all be located on the Cloud. Not to mention, Cloud Computing allows information to be wiped from lost or stolen devices!
  2. Prepare for Disaster. Cloud Computing is viewed as a common solution to any data archival, disaster recovery and business continuity needs a business may have. Because all of the information is stored on virtual servers rather than physical ones, you won’t need a dedicated remote location to store your hardware, and you can easily transfer data from virtual server to virtual server, greatly reducing your cost and recovery times.
  3. Work from Work. Or Home. Or Wherever. Cloud computing also enables you to work from your network, regardless of your location. All you need is Internet access to login to your own secure connection to perform day-to-day tasks in real-time, keeping anyone at any location connected with the most current information. This often results in greater flexibility for everyone, without a hit in production.
  4. Upgrade Software Automatically. Say goodbye to worrying about time consuming, and often costly, software upgrades. When you operate in the Cloud, you get new releases and innovations (including security updates) as they are released, ensuring that everyone is working with the latest and greatest software features.
  5. Collaborate from Anywhere. No more making updates to the third version of a document, only to find out you should have been working from the sixth version. Collaboration becomes easier than ever on the Cloud because documents are centrally stored on the virtual server and can be accessed by those who need them from anywhere on any device.
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