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What Is Cloud Computing, and What’s in It for Small Business?

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Submitted by Melanie Fricke on Wednesday, November 30, 2011

CMIT Solutions’ cloud computing services, available now to small businesses, save time, money

If you’re a small business owner, pretty soon now (if not already), you’re going to be knee-deep in the cloud.

Cloud computing, that is: how to harness it, how much it costs, how much you should invest in it, how secure it is, whether it can replace your on-site server.

But let’s cover the basics first. What is cloud computing?

It’s the delivery of computing services — data, software and other resources — via a network, usually the web, rather than on a localized server. Because the services don’t depend on the limited storage capacity of a server, cloud computing allows for nearly unlimited data storage and processing ability. If you’ve loaded videos onto YouTube or shared documents via Google Docs, you’ve used the cloud.

Until now, such services were usually available only to large companies with massive resources. That’s no longer the case. Cloud computing technology is available to small businesses through managed service offerings like CMIT Anywhere, the main cloud package offered by CMIT Solutions, a managed IT provider for small businesses.

Too few small business owners have realized the cloud’s benefits. A recent Newtek Business Services survey found that 48 percent of small business owners don’t believe cloud computing will reduce their IT costs.

They’re mistaken, or just don’t know about the myriad benefits the cloud can have for small businesses:

  • Cost-effectiveness. Business owners pay only for what they use, better aligning their costs to the resources they use.
  • Unlimited storage. The cloud allows business owners to scale their storage up or down as needed.
  • Automatic upgrades. Business owners don’t have to worry about constantly upgrading their software or hardware.
  • Flexibility. Small businesses can configure and administer their systems any way they choose.
  • Mobility. Employees don’t have to chain themselves to their desks to work. The cloud allows them to access information and programs wherever they are.
  • Freedom. Cloud computing frees small business owners and employees to focus on their businesses without having to waste time and energy on technology.

Companies are discovering that storing data in the cloud is safer, more secure and often less expensive than maintaining local servers. Besides CMIT Anywhere, CMIT Solutions is launching private cloud solutions for small businesses that use local machines to keep the cloud on-site, which prevents a slow Internet connection from gumming up the system.

CMIT Solutions is prepared for this revolutionary step in IT solutions for small businesses. And there’s no doubt — small businesses that ignore the cloud are missing an opportunity to create a competitive advantage for themselves.

Want to know more about the ways cloud computing can help your small business? See www.cmitsolutions.com.

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