A few years ago, according to the Cloud Industry Forum, 88% of businesses in the UK were actively using cloud services on a regular basis. It’s a number that’s only going one way as understanding, adoption and choice of SaaS (Software as a Service) solutions is growing.
Salesforce, HubSpot, Netsuite, Microsoft 365 and Asana are some of the cloud-based tools that you may be using at work, while Netflix and Spotify are probably heavily relied on at home. On average, every employee uses eight SaaS business applications, and for companies with around 50 employees, this rises to around 40 apps in use in total.
As well as SaaS, businesses are removing their on-premises hardware and switching to cloud for business-critical activities, such as storage. A good move as another recent study by Multisoft Virtual Academy suggests that cloud computing can be up to 40x more cost-effective for SMBs, compared to on-premises IT. Just think, no more maintenance costs or out-of-date tech.
But, is that the only thing to consider? With most companies deciding that cloud applications are the future what’s the knock on effect to the underlying connectivity? People haven’t worked in offices for the past year, so while they’ve got more reliant on cloud applications and cloud servers, the office bandwidth hasn’t been considered. With offices opening their doors again, running business-critical cloud applications for a whole workforce through consumer fibre just isn’t going to cut it.
Activities such as video conferencing which has been most people’s preferred communication method over the past year, and telephone calls over VoIP networks, quickly use up bandwidth. If the bandwidth isn’t available to allow the speech and picture to be packaged up, travel across the internet and be unpackaged at the other end in the correct order, you’re going to have a problem. We’ve all experienced the frustrations while home working of glitchy video and calls dropping – and while it’s been tolerated with home broadband, it’s not an experience we want in the office.
Video meetings and online collaboration are here to stay, so before our offices truly welcome back our employees, businesses absolutely must review their internet speeds to ensure that productivity is not lost.
Thankfully, a full fibre program is being rolled out across the UK. This means that the old copper network that once provided our internet connectivity is being replaced by fibre which allows information to travel along it at much faster speeds.
Large areas of the country can already switch to an ethernet service capable of delivering gigabit speeds, and others have FTTP or FTTC available which can increase speeds dramatically.
Most agnostic suppliers (we’re one of them) will be able to find out what internet speeds are available at your postcode on what technologies and at what cost. So, whether or not you think you need it, it’s worth 10 minutes of your time to check out the options and whether there are faster and/or cheaper speeds available – be it faster broadband or full gigabit ethernet.
With up to 40x savings to be made by doing more in the cloud, every business needs to ensure that reliable, fast internet is simply business as usual.