The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed businesses in many ways. The majority of organizations were not prepared for such an unprecedented scenario — most disaster recovery plans were focused on weather-related problems and other natural disasters. This lack of preparation meant businesses had to come up with strategies to adapt operations almost overnight.
Enter cloud computing. According to a report by Flexera, over 94% of businesses use the cloud in some capacity. Those who do use the cloud extensively were able to develop a remote working solution to the coronavirus pandemic, already having the infrastructure in place.
The current situation means now is the perfect time to consider migrating to the cloud if you haven’t already, or to scale up and make changes to your cloud strategy if you have. Here are six things to consider:
Prioritize remote working
The most critical aspect of cloud services in the current environment is remote working. The need to quickly adapt operations to facilitate employees to work from anywhere is evident. There will likely be some degree of remote working in the near future, especially considering that a recent report from Buffer suggests 99% of employees would like to work from home, in some capacity, for the rest of their careers.
This need for remote working should be one of your leading considerations when updating your cloud strategy. Ask the following questions:
- What do your employees need to ensure they can complete their roles from home?
- How can cloud computing facilitate this?
- Can employees access their files from everywhere?
- Do employees understand the security protocols that must be adhered to when outside the office?
Make essential applications available to employees
It’s not just files that can be stored, processed, and accessed in the cloud. Many software providers now have cloud-based versions of their applications available to organizations.
As the applications used by your employees are likely central to operations, you should update your cloud strategy to ensure your staff can access the applications they need to fulfill their roles from outside the office.
Accelerate your migration to the cloud
As mentioned, 94% of organizations use cloud computing as part of their technological solution. However, the same report by Flexera found that only 25% use the cloud exclusively.ased
Partially using the cloud exposes your business to risk if your employees cannot make it to the office. This risk occurs when some files, data, and applications are stored in the cloud, but others aren’t. For example, your employees may forget to save their work in the cloud or may store some of their work on local hard drives in the office. When this happens, your employees may not be able to access the files they need in the event they unexpectedly need to work from home.
For this reason, now is a great time to consider accelerating your full migration to the cloud.
Consider your overall business strategy
Although now is a great time to think about full migration to the cloud, it’s important to consider this within the context of your full business strategy. How does cloud migration fit into the overall strategy? What do you need? What can you afford?
This isn’t to suggest a full migration might not be the right option — but the project to implement the changes must fit with your wider business goals.
Considering your options minimizes the risk of rushing into something that’s not fit for purpose, helping to align your cloud strategy with your overarching business goals.
Prepare for the ‘new normal’
We will likely feel the COVID-19 pandemic impact for some time, with experts recommending social distancing to continue for several months. But even when the virus disappears, it’s unlikely life as we know it will remain unchanged.
One thing we have all learned is that we can’t take anything for granted. Review your current cloud strategy, and amend it to ensure your organization can respond to any hurdles thrown at it.
How an MSP can help develop your cloud strategy
If you know you need to improve your cloud-based offering but are unsure where to start, you need to talk to an MSP.
Equipped with years of knowledge, a cloud services MSP can consider your unique situation and recommend changes to your cloud strategy to achieve your goals, whether that includes more remote working or something else entirely.
Do you need help updating your cloud strategy? Get in touch to find out how we can help.