Cloud technology is helping businesses and people in transformation weather the ongoing storm caused by global pandemic

Cloud is becoming a top C –suite agenda item as businesses are transitioning from a piece –meal approach to more holistic end to end business transformation with cloud at its core. The winners of tomorrow will be the ones that navigate this change rapidly, make the right choices and engage with the appropriate partners to augment their own capabilities.

Could is a model of computing where servers, networks, storage, developments tools, and even applications (apps) are enabled through the internet. Instead of organizations having to make major investments to buy equipment, train staff, and provide ongoing maintenance, some or all of those needs are handled by a cloud service provider.

There are five key characteristics of a cloud computing environment, as defined by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

With a public cloud environment, users "plug into" the data and applications via an internet connection giving anytime, anywhere access.

Cloud is often pay-as-you-go, where you only pay for what you use. Think about how a utility company meters how much water, electricity, or gas is used and charges based on consumption. The cloud is the same.

Services can be requested and provisioned quickly, without the need for manual setup and configuration.

Cloud often uses the multi-tenancy model. This means a single application is shared among several users. So, rather than creating a copy of the application for each user, several users, or "tenants" can configure the application to their specific needs.

Cloud platforms are elastic. An organization can scale its resource usage levels up or down quickly and easily as needs change.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

SaaS is the most commonly used applications service and is becoming a dominant way to organizations to access software applications.

With SaaS, an organization access a specific software application hosted on a remote server and managed by a third party provider. On a subscription basis, the application is accessed through a web browser, reducing the need for on device software or updates.

Businesses should use SaaS if they’re looking quickly and easily enable cloud system access with minimal database management, development and /or service provider interaction. SaaS is suitable for applications that require web and mobile access, short term projects requiring quick collaboration, and startups that need to quickly launch ecommerce websites without server issues or software development.

Platform as a service (PaaS)

PaaS is a popular choice for businesses who want to create unique applications without making major financial investments. With PaaS, an organization accesses a pre – defined environment for software development that can be used to build, test and run applications. This means that developers don’t need to start from scratch when creating apps.PaaS allows the developer to focus on the creative side of software development, as opposed to tedious tasks such as writing extensive code or managing software updates or security patches. Examples of PaaS products include Google App Engine, web servers and SQL servers.

Before cloud computing, companies had to store all their data and software on their own hard drivers and servers. The bigger the company, the more storage they needed. This way of treating data is not scalable at speed. For example, if word started spreading about your business and you suddenly had a lot of online orders, your servers would probably crash. Good business meant hard work for the IT department.

It’s not just businesses that benefit from cloud computing. The cloud has transformed our lives as individual as well. Many of us use cloud services every day. When we update our status on social media, or check our bank accounts we’re most likely using applications that are hosted by cloud services. These apps are accessed through internet connection rather than installed on our hard drives or devices.

Today’s cloud technology means that companies can scale and adapt at speed and scale, accelerate innovation, drive business agility, streamline operations, and reduce costs. Not only can this help propel companies through the current crisis, it can lead to increased, sustainable growth.

Organizations have responded to recent disruption with rapid cloud and digital transformation. While they have boosted resilience, they must now reinvent for greater integration under a cohesive cloud strategy to realize delayed value and tighten cost.

In times of uncertainty, the most agile businesses are the ones that thrive. What do they all have in common? High interoperability.

Interoperability is when enterprise applications seamlessly interact and exchange data, connecting technology, people and processes to improve collaboration and decision making.

According to our research, companies with high interoperability grew revenue six times faster than peers with low interoperability and unlocked an additional five percentage points in annual revenue growth.

Replatforming to cloud brings your organization unprecedented interoperability. By modernizing operations on a common platform, you can run, experiment and innovate with greater speed and agility to lower cost, optimize spend and improve resilience.

Companies need a deliberate strategy for breakthrough innovation to reinvent the enterprise. The pace of technological change is already a primary force of disruption causing companies to accelerate their reinvention strategies. Now, Cloud and AI are accelerating into megatrends that have the potential to dramatically speed up the pace of technological change, bend the innovation curve and become a crucial part of every organization’s chain value.

Cloud and AI form the foundation of a strong digital core, which is a source of competitive advantage in a time of unprecedented uncertainty and opportunity, when business reinvention must be continuous. With a digital core in place, every company can aspire to create breakthrough innovations in their industry and adjacent markets a territory that was formerly the domain of digital native companies.

Cloud is the operating system of the future enterprise, it allows businesses to run with greater speed and agility by standardizing operations on a common platform and enabling organizations to innovate and experiment faster. AI’s impact on business will be similarly far reaching, because of its potential to reinvent practically every aspect of every enterprise.