The history of Cloud-based systems dates back to the 1960s when American computer scientist named J.C.R. Licklider first introduced the idea for Cloud computing. However, the practical and advanced application of Cloud computing and Cloud-based systems only had a turnaround in the 21st century. Cloud-inspired developments such as Cloud migration has also taken place in the realm of conducting business.
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20 years ago, people would not have imagined the pervasiveness of a Cloud-based system nowadays. Cloud’s cost-efficiency, good performance, and reliable security had barely touched the surface back then.
Now, instead of all the computer hardware and software, you would have purchased, or instead of having a system inside your company’s network, Cloud-based systems are provided to your company as a service by another company which can be accessed over the Internet.
Advantages of Cloud-based systems
Internet connectivity is pervasive these days, in most cities and countries around the world. You can be working for a Chinese company but living in France, and still, be able to meet deadlines and reports in real-time. This is especially useful during this period of the COVID-19 pandemic where countries had locked down borders and limited their international flights. Many businessmen, employees, and even students and their families are stuck in one city or country and could not fly back to their place of business or residence. But Cloud is here to save the day. With Cloud-based systems, everyone gets the chance to work or partake in important events despite the distance.
Desktop computers, laptops, tablets, notebooks, cellphones – each one of us has a preferred device to work on. Being able to operate your business from any device, without having to worry about where you have stored data or which device you last saved important information on, is a lifesaver these days.
Having Cloud based-systems means not paying for several systems and mainframes as were previously utilized in the 1990s. These days, you only need to pay the cost of a single system and its respective server system to be able to enjoy the full features of the said purchase. Despite the size, Cloud’s capabilities exceed physical dimensions.
Cloud ensures that your work systems are securely managed on your behalf. For instance, Cloud-based system providers that promise and uphold transparency will make sure you get your money’s worth with safety but at the same time let you know details pertaining to what you expect them to deliver. These providers make sure your data is secure, with the right licenses to operate the system, maintaining it, and making sure it keeps up with current technology, in terms of software and performance. It can be as private or as public as you plan it to be.
Examples of Cloud-based systems
Cloud ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning)
Cloud ERPs, in the most basic sense, make your business more organized and efficient. Third-party ERP providers offer these services to help you simplify company functions and processes and decrease physical paperwork and manual labor. In a nutshell, your company’s departments’ functions are accessible anytime and anywhere, but in a very secure environment. Therefore, only people with the right authorization can access them.
Expense reports, employee leaves, invoicing, supplier bills, accounting, human resource management, logistics, and more: the whole enterprise’s resources integrated conveniently, and to your preference. A Cloud-based ERP makes your business’ internal functions more efficient and transparent. These functions may include but are not limited to:
- Governance by business owners and managers;
- Human resource management;
- Finance and accounting;
- Logistics and inventory management;
- Production and purchasing; and
- Research and development.
ERPs are ideal for internal processes, whereas features that deal with external aspects like customer relations are more suitable for Cloud CRM.