How Cloud Computing is Changing Remote Work

The pandemic in 2020 created a situation where organizations had to move their employees from the office to a remote environment.

In fact, cloud infrastructure spending reached $29 billion in the first quarter according to Synergy Research Group. This was up 37 percent over last year’s spending. 

The abrupt shift caused companies who were skeptical of remote work to recognize the practicality of working remotely. Working from home boosts productivity, eliminates the need to commute to and from work and it enables work from any area with a secure internet connection. 

These benefits have encouraged companies to continue remote work even as shelter-in-place orders start to relax. However, in order to successfully operate remotely, companies across the world will need to rely heavily on the cloud to maximize efficiency and security.

Accessibility 

Normally, organizations with their own data centers need to periodically take their network offline for maintenance. However, cloud services allow remote employees 24-hour access to data and information they need to work effectively.  

 Scalability

What do we mean when we say scalability? When it comes to the cloud, scalability is either horizontal or vertical.

Horizontal scaling means adding more physical servers that divide the workload to prevent one server from being overwhelmed with requests.

Vertical scaling means adding more input/ output resources to a server memory, and CPU.

Third-party cloud providers also have all the vast hardware and software resources already in place to allow for rapid scaling that an individual business could not achieve cost-effectively on its own.

Virtualization 

Scalability on the cloud is achieved through virtualization. That means virtual machines take the place of physical ones. Virtual machines are more flexible and can be scaled up and down precisely because they aren’t physical. 

They can be moved to another server or hosted on various servers at the same time. Virtual machines can be adjusted according to the workload and applications being used.

For companies with in-house IT, they would need to purchase all of the right resources itself and it might not be cost effective.

Furthermore, the cloud enables business to quickly scale at their own pace. As businesses grow, they can accommodate more remote employees. Organizations can also scale their computing power according to their need. In fact, many IT support services supply companies with adjustable service fees every month.

Security & Compliance

A reliance on a cloud based IT infrastructure means new threats as businesses pick up on the fact that cyber security has less to do with their physical computer anymore. In a cloud system user identity is prioritized to guarantee appropriate levels of access to important documentation and resources. Identity verification also protects against unauthorized users and malicious threats.

With the cloud administrators can establish policies to ensure employees have the appropriate permissions to access the right information. These settings can also be configured remotely so employees can work safely from home.

Highly regulated industries like healthcare, financial services, and education need to ensure data security. Cloud infrastructure in many cases include compliance tools that make it easier for organizations to manage sensitive client data. There are cloud applications like the ones used by Nerds Support that feature compliance checking scans to verify the security of the device as well.

So many clouds.

How to Get the Most Out of Cloud Resources?

In order for companies to work effectively in a remote environment they have to understand how cloud operates. They will have to prioritize cloud security and compliance tools, and a cloud infrastructure based on virtual machines to support a remote workforce.  

Which Cloud Security And Governance Controls To Prioritize

During the pandemic organizations operated with an IT infrastructure located on premise. Working remotely however, security is not about how strong a firewall your company has. 

Companies will have to invest in Identity and access management (IAM) tools like multifactor authentication to truly benefit from the cloud. Understanding the cloud and the tools can help business owners and employees support a remote workforce that benefits everyone.


By Felipe Castilla

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