Business Operations Cloud Smes Strategy

Est. reading time: 4 minutes
Author: Steph Locke

You’ve probably heard of the cloud but what is it and how can it help your business? Learn how moving to the cloud can help you innovate and stay ahead of the curve when it comes to tech.

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Steph Locke

Technologist and consultant with a track record of delivering transformation of businesses into data science and AI companies.


We live in a fast-paced world where devices are always changing, and the competition is fierce. This means that manufacturers need to be agile, constantly adapting to stay ahead of the curve. A key part of this agility is embracing modern technology like cloud computing and moving your operations to it.    

Manufacturers across the world are starting to move their operations from on-premises software and hardware to the cloud. It is a trend that will only continue as more companies are becoming aware of how much money they can save by moving their IT assets to the cloud. These savings could be upwards of $600,000 per year in some cases!   

What is the cloud and why should you care about it? 

So, what is cloud computing and how will it benefit you? Simply put, cloud computing stores your software and data on the internet instead of a computer hard drive. This means you don’t have to manage or store any of your data on-site and can get a third party to manage things for you. It also allows you to integrate your systems. Cloud ERP, CRM, marketing automation, supply chain management, product lifecycle development, and customer service systems can all be found in one place.

By cutting down on in-house data management and storage you save yourself time and money. You need to spend less capital on hardware and lower your operational expenses to maintain it, meaning your IT staff spend more time on valuable business change instead of keeping the lights on. Productivity goes up while costs go down. 

Having all your systems in one place increases collaboration between departments meaning you can get your product to market faster. It also gives you more visibility over every department so you can see where you can increase efficiency or cut costs. 

If you are in the process of increasing or scaling back your business cloud computing has got you covered. You can quickly scale up or scale down your cloud usage depending on your exact needs, so you don’t waste money unnecessarily.  

How to start moving your operations to the cloud   

Now that we’ve covered all the benefits of cloud let’s see how we can move our operations over. There are many different cloud-based services out there they are very easy to find the tricky part is finding the one that is right for you. There are options just for data storage or file sharing and there are options to go fully integrated cloud. 

For manufacturers looking to integrate their entire system, the Platform as a Service (PaaS) model is the way to go. PaaS allows you to fully customise your cloud needs allowing you to create, host, and deploy applications from one place without needing to modify any complex databases.  

At the same time don’t feel pressured to go all cloud all at once. A hybrid solution could be for you. You can move some workloads over to the cloud while keeping others in-house. There are many different Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) models out there that allow you to integrate some cloud into your business while you keep other things in-house. 

Keep in mind when choosing a cloud provider, it’s more of a partnership than just a service. It becomes a part of how you do business so choose carefully.  

The risks of not making this change    

The manufacturing sector is experiencing massive digital transformation in a trend that has become widely known as the industrial revolution 4.0. Manufacturing has become dependent on a global supply chain with consumers that are ever hungry for new products and excellent service.  

Cloud solutions fit perfectly into the new era of modern manufacturing. Yet while the use of cloud is growing in the sector many manufacturers have failed to implement and, in some cases, outright rejected the use of cloud. If you want to stay competitive in this new environment, you must innovate and keep modernising your business. You cannot keep up in this industry if don’t speed up your pace of IT innovation, you need to grow with rather than against change. 

Further reading  

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