Benefits of cloud better than expected
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Benefits of cloud better than expected

For companies in a variety of industries to reach their full potential, advanced technology needs to come into play. While implementing the latest solutions may once have been an option, this is no longer the case. In fact, enterprises that engage in IT planning to discover how to best utilize IT are likely to see major improvements, both internally and in terms of how well they compete in the market. 

One of the most important tools for organizations today is cloud computing. Because it is cost-effective and offers many advantages in terms of productivity, leaders worldwide are migrating many of their IT systems to the cloud. But while it may have been apparent for some time that these technologies can be beneficial, it has not always been clear by what degree.

According to a recent study by Luth Research and Vanson Bourne for CA Technologies, enterprises that have deployed cloud solutions are achieving higher-quality results than they had originally anticipated. The report noted that most users feel their cloud solutions have "met or exceeded expectations" across models such as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). Additionally, nearly all respondents – 98 percent – said these models met or surpassed their expectations in terms of security.

"Going in, we expected the results to be much more balanced between successes and challenges across a variety of deployments and service models," said John Michelsen, chief technology officer at CA Technologies. "Surprisingly, survey respondents were pleased with their cloud computing initiatives, which validates that the cloud is not just a fad, and instead they are focusing on making the most of it to drive innovation, speed and performance."

But this isn't the only example of the cloud proving its worth as an enterprise tool. The March 2013 MYOB Business Monitor discovered that among more than 1,000 small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), those that were using cloud computing solutions were 106 percent more likely to experience revenue boosts in 2012 than those that did not. 

The study also suggested that companies may be funneling their stronger bottom lines into other useful initiatives. Fifty-two percent of respondents using the cloud asserted that they would place an increased focus on customer retention and acquisition strategies in the coming year, compared to only 34 percent of those that are not yet using the cloud. Additionally, 36 percent of cloud users said they would make more efforts toward adjusting prices and margins on products and services, while 33 percent would attempt to increase the number of products and services offered.

For firms that still may be apprehensive about how they can use more advanced solutions such as the cloud to gain a competitive edge, there are a wealth of options. For instance, with the help of virtualization consulting from IT experts, business leaders can develop greater insight into how they can make the cloud work for them.