When companies sign on to cloud computing, they contract remote services instead of providing the hardware and software physically located in their own offices. CRM is an excellent application for cloud computing. Network speeds are good enough, pricing is extremely positive, and the skills and resources do not have to be inhouse. The five essential characteristics of cloud computing can be put to good use.
1) On-Demand Self-Service
The use of cloud computing allows on-demand use of computing capabilities such as network storage and server time. This means IT is no longer needed in order for a consumer to obtain, configure and deploy certain services. They can merely use cloud service catalogues to select what they require and proceed with what they have to do. A company no longer has to buy all the special software or hardware because the cloud provides what they need. This saves money on purchases and employee training that frees up resources for product development and customer care.
2) Rapid Elasticity
Cloud computing or Software as a Service (SaaS) makes it possible,automatically, to scale capabilities according to demand. To illustrate, when a business becomes successful there is a corresponding increase in computing demand. Instead of engaging several servers to meet this rising demand, businesses can use cloud computing, which can dynamically provide access to additional computing power as needed. Conversely, when the demand goes down, services can be scaled down, both for hardware, and also for software. This is more cost effective than paying for dedicated servers.
3) Broad Network Access
Cloud computing allows broad network access so that services can be made available through a wide range of devices such as mobile phones, PCs, Macs, laptops and tablets. For companies, these resources are hosted in a private cloud network which is operated within the firewall of the company. This means applications and software can be accessed through numerous points of origins by personnel. This makes it possible for them to do work practically anywhere using smart phones and other devices with online connectivity.
4) Resource Pooling
The cloud computing provider has resources that have been pooled together and organised to serve multiple consumers (who in turn serve multiple tenants). This means vast physical and virtual resources can be assigned and reassigned according to client demand. As a result, relieved of the burden of coming up with the answer to each new technical need, consumers are able to streamline their systems. In essence, consumers do not have to own everything they need because there is a practically unlimited pool of resources for them to use.
5) Measured Service
Cloud computing has a metering capability which controls, monitors and reports the use of resources. This results in audited reports for both the provider and the consumer showing exactly how much hard disk was used, which services were accessed and for how many hours. The implication for companies that use cloud computing means they pay only for what they use which is very cost-efficient for business operations.
These essential characteristics of cloud computing when applied to CRM means, that among other things, companies can avail of software-as-a-service (SaaS) CRM solutions such as Microsoft Dynamics 365. This spares them the task of buying, installing and upgrading software. Together with reduced IT capital expenditures, trimmed down operating costs and increased storage, cloud computing gives companies the freedom that comes from not having to see to issues such as server updates. The freedom that comes from putting into operation cloud computing and CRM equates to companies having a better opportunity focusing on their products but most of all, their customers.
If you’re using Microsoft Dynamics CRM and want to move to the cloud, we can help. Check out our cloud migration services.