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What Is On-Demand Computing, and What Are Its Advantages?

What Is On-Demand Computing?

On-demand computing is a business computing model in which computing resources are made available to the user on an “as needed” basis.  Rather than all at once, on-demand computing allows cloud hosting companies to provide their clients with access to computing resources as they become necessary.

What Are the Advantages of On-Demand Computing?

The on-demand computing model was developed to overcome the common challenge that enterprises encountered of not being able to meet unpredictable, fluctuating computing demands efficiently.  Businesses today need to be agile and need the ability to scale resources easily and quickly based on rapidly changing market needs.  Because an enterprise’s demand for computing resources can vary dramatically from one period to another, maintaining sufficient resources to meet peak requirements can be costly.  However, with on-demand computing, companies can cut costs by maintaining minimal computing resources until they run into the need to increase them while only paying for their use.

Industry experts predict on-demand computing to soon be the most widely used computing model for enterprises.  In fact, IBM’s vice-president of technology and strategy stated, “The technology is at a point where we can start to move into an era of on-demand computing.  I give it between two and four years to reach a level of maturity.” Another important customer service objective achieved through on-demand computing is immediate support and assistance to customers, which can improve customer satisfaction and retention.

Cloud Computing Creates Success in the Manufacturing Industry

According to a recent article in Forbes, many in the manufacturing industry seek cloud-based services to increase efficiency from a supply chain, distribution, and services standpoint. In fact, more than a few manufacturers have already adopted cloud-based applications throughout their companies. According to MintJutras, a research-based consulting firm specializing in analyzing enterprise applications’ business impact, SaaS applications make up 22% of all manufacturing and distribution software installed today. Additionally, this number is expected to grow to 45% within ten years.

The main goal of manufacturers is to make themselves easier to work with both externally and internally. Manufacturers are constantly facing pressure to increase accuracy, improve process speed, and effectively utilize their internal intelligence to make every supplier, distributor, and service interaction worthwhile.  Cloud-based services are helping to give these companies the chance to do just this.

Experts say that cloud-based services have the potential to streamline key areas of business so that manufacturers have more time to sell their products and invest in new ones. As mentioned in the Forbes article, here are just a few of the ways that cloud computing is revolutionizing the manufacturing industry:

  • Capturing and applying company-wide data through the use of analytics, business intelligence, and rules engines.
  • Piloting and quickly moving to a full launch of supplier portals and collaboration platforms, complete with quality management dashboards and workflows.
  • Accelerating new product development and introduction strategies to attain time-to-market objectives.
  • Managing indirect and direct channel sales from a single cloud platform tracks sales results at the individual, group, and divisional levels.
  • Automating customer service, support, and common order status inquiries online.
  • Increasing reliance on two-tier ERP software strategies to gain greater efficiencies in material planning and supplier management and reduce logistics costs.

Cloud computing is seen as the future of the Internet as more and more industries are starting to see the potential that the cloud offers different aspects of business.

Cloud Computing is Here to Stay

Once you move to the Cloud, you’ll be wowed! You probably won’t go back to your old, clunky hosting solution, either. After switching to the Cloud, companies both large and small are unlikely to switch back to a less evolved solution. Here are some reasons why cloud computing is here to stay.

One of the most common reasons companies move to the Cloud is to provide employees with the ability to utilize many devices and applications that they are familiar and comfortable with to get the job done more productively. Organizations are eliminating device regulations and allowing employees to use their own, a move that wouldn’t have been possible without the Cloud.

IBM recently published a study in which they questioned approximately 2,000 midsized businesses about their implemented IT practices. An astonishing 70 percent said they actively pursued cloud-based analytics for greater efficiency, upgrades, and insights!

According to Intel, as smartphones and tablets are purchased by consumers at a rapid pace, the number of servers necessary to support the devices skyrockets. In fact, for every 600 smartphones or every 120 tablets, a new server will need to be deployed to handle the data load. If you are using a smartphone or a tablet, you’re helping to keep the Cloud alive!

In 2011, 90% of Microsoft’s research and development budget–$9.6 billion in all— was spent on cloud computing strategy and products. That’s incredible! There’s no doubt that Microsoft wouldn’t be spending that money if the technology wasn’t a sure thing.

How Can My Enterprise Take Advantage of Cloud Hosting?

Recent studies have shown that the greatest growth in cloud usage is currently coming from enterprises. Enterprises are using the cloud for a variety of applications, including highly scalable company websites, social applications, grid computing for scientific research, employee collaboration, and several other web-based services.

In the enterprise, cloud hosting can take various forms, including:

  • Software as a Service (SaaS) – This area is seeing the highest level of adoption, especially in the fields of Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Human Resource Management System (HRMS), etc.
  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) – IaaS is finding a moderate level of adoption in development and preproduction environments.
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS) – This area has high potential. Still, it remains at a relatively low level of adoption due to barriers such as limits on expansion and difficult integration.

There are many reasons for an enterprise to shift to IT solutions that include cloud hosting.  First of all, capital and operating costs can be drastically reduced by utilizing resources solely when you need them and paying only for what you use. In addition, with a managed Cloud Hosting solution, the burden associated with managing various IT resources across the enterprise is given to the cloud hosting provider so that IT personnel can focus on delivering value to the company. Finally, cloud hosting provides for business dexterity since the entire IT infrastructure can be scaled up or down to meet demand. Companies can quickly and easily respond to the needs of the rapidly changing markets to ensure they are always providing value to their customers.

Like any other project within the enterprise, project management principles such as estimation accuracy, project planning, requirements management, and quality management are all important for cloud projects. Adopting VPS hosting should be well thought out as part of an enterprise-wide strategy so that each stakeholder understands the benefits of the cloud and where it fits into the overall IT goals of the enterprise.

Moving your business into the cloud offers many advantages due to the on-demand nature of cloud server hosting. At Atlantic.Net, we can provide your business with the scalability, accessibility, and financial savings that cloud hosting provides. Our goal is to help our clients save time and money by operating their business more efficiently. Atlantic.Net specializes in research-oriented cloud solutions – learn more about our solutions for life sciences, pharma hosting, and biotech hosting.

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