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Cloud Technology- 10 Easy Applications for Small Businesses

By Cynthia Nevels

As a business owner, you know that having access to vital information concerning your business at all times is highly important. That can be the difference between closing a deal and losing a potential client, which is why “cloud computing” is here to stay. Cloud computing provides the means through which everything — from computing power to computing infrastructure, applications, business processes to personal collaboration — can be delivered to you as a service wherever and whenever you need it.

In a research article published by Dummies.com written by Judith Hurwitz, Robin Bloor, Marcia Kaufman, and Fern Halper the team explains, “The ‘cloud’ in cloud computing can be defined as the set of hardware, networks, storage, services, and interfaces that combine to deliver aspects of computing as a service.”

There are four reasons why cloud computing can be a vital catalyst for the growth of small businesses:

1. Instant access to data on any smart device 2. Reduction in duplicate staff 3. Reduction in tax liabilities on equipment and software 4. Ability to change direction on a whim without major IT overhaul or expense

Cloud computing can also save companies much needed cash if the right solution is selected. In 2011, The CDW Cloud Computing Tracking Poll found that 76% of the small businesses implementing cloud computing have successfully reduced the cost of applications by moving them to the cloud. This is because the initial capital investment and the ongoing support infrastructure your IT headcount) needed to install and run hardware and software is done by the cloud service provider.

There are numerous of examples of how small businesses are actually implementing SaaS (software as a service) applications to streamline their business operations. In most cases, the process is as simple as logging in on a central website. For example, to access you email, calendar, storage center, and productivity applications if you have an iPhone, iPad or MacBook, you simply set up an account

via iCloud.com. Once it is set up, you can login to access your applications at anytime, day or night, from any smart device with Internet access.

This simple login process is the same for Zoho.com, which is a cloud technology company created to provide useful business applications to small businesses all over the globe. This system is a subscription-based service, free to start, that gives new entrepreneurs access to Microsoft Office applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint online. Cloud computing is the way to go!

Cynthia E. Nevels has owned and operated her marketing and management consulting firm, CynthiaNevels.com, for 13 years. She’s the host of The C-Radio Show, author of Financial Bailout: A Guide to Creating Your Own Financial Rescue Plan and Navigating Your Way to Financial Security During a Recession and she’s an adjunct business professor at Mountain View. Follow her on Twitter @cynthianevels and facebook.com/thecradioshow.

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