Enterprise apps are the software designed to integrate every aspect of a company’s operations, from accounting, finance and HR to inventory, marketing and distribution. In larger enterprises, these apps are often also linked with suppliers, customers and business partners. The trend now is to move them to a private or public cloud and make them accessible to everyone on an as-needed basis.
Change is coming
While larger corporations have been systematically moving their processes to the cloud for some time, other businesses are only now realising the benefits and starting their migrations. And while only a small percentage have done so to date, according to recent reports, the pace is beginning to quicken.
Hitachi Data Systems announced in their business and technology predictions for the Asia Pacific region in 2015 that cloud platforms have come of age, noting that organisations are starting to transform their core applications in order to leverage a mix of private and public clouds.
They say Australian businesses in particular are leading the way in hybrid cloud adoption, ahead of places like Singapore and Hong Kong. A case in point, Qantas recently announced they will move their customer-facing applications to the cloud. In fact, the airline industry in general is looking at adopting cloud computing because of the cost savings and efficiencies it offers in a highly competitive industry. Cloud technologies can be used to deliver passenger services such as baggage drops with label printing and self-boarding gates.
And aircraft maintenance could be made much more efficient using cloud computing. Virgin America, WestJet, and Endeavor Air have already adopted cloud computing systems to manage their maintenance records. According to a recent survey by the Air Transport Industry, almost half of all airports are also expected to look at adopting cloud services over the next couple of years.
Another recent move to the cloud was made by insurance giant Allianz Australia. Plagued with inefficiencies and experiencing rising data management costs, they recently moved to a private cloud platform. This has netted them a 20% reduction in data centre space and over 42% in project savings.
Advantages of cloud computing
The reason organisations are beginning to move toward the adoption of cloud technologies is because they offer many advantages, particularly to large enterprises.
For one thing, cloud computing is much simpler. It offers an easy way for an organisation to get everyone onto the same platform and, due to the ease with which upgrades to applications and programs can be performed, keep them all using the same technology.
Cloud computing is also accessible at any time and from anywhere, making working remotely a reality. Employees can access the organisation’s data from any mobile device and anywhere there is an Internet connection available.
One of the biggest advantages of cloud computing is that it is highly cost-efficient. Software licensing for individual computers is becoming a thing of the past, along with expensive upgrades requiring long hours of IT time that could be better utilised elsewhere. In fact, recent studies have indicated that organisations can save up to 30% or more when moving their operations from in-house systems to private or public clouds.
Another advantage of cloud computing is its extreme flexibility and scalability. If an organisation experiences rapid unpredicted growth, cloud computing will allow it to quickly and easily add more computing power, resources, and data storage to support the increased business. Cloud computing also allows for greater collaboration between employees, outsourced business partners, suppliers and customers.
In short enterprise cloud computing is the way of the future, and while growth is only now showing signs of beginning to accelerate, the benefits it offers to business will undoubtedly see it become the norm within a few short years.