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The Advantages of Cloud Computing for Financial Organisations

By Gordon Davey, general manager of Azure Cloud Services, SoftwareONE’s

As a result of the COVID-19 lockdowns, organisations have had to adapt how they operate. One significant change that organisations have had to adapt to is the increase in remote/hybrid workers.

84% of workers who had to work from home during the pandemic plan to continue to work from home either in a hybrid or remote capacity. Alongside this, there has been a 12% increase between April 2021 and February 2022  in workers planning to work mostly from home.

The increase in remote/hybrid workers has led financial organisations to embrace technologies that will enable employees to work seamlessly to the best of their abilities as though they were in the office.

Should financial organisations embrace cloud computing, it could greatly help both employers and employees work from home effectively and efficiently. But does it financially benefit organisations to move their computing to the cloud?

Financially it’s beneficial 

In recent years, organisations have been hit by financial struggles, no matter the sector. In the first three months of this year alone, there has been a 19% rise in businesses in critical financial distress. In comparison to the start of 2021. With today’s economic climate, organisations can no longer be wasting money. Doing so could result in financial organisations becoming financially vulnerable.

However, should financial organisations shift to cloud computing, it minimises the physical hardware equipment that they’d need to buy. There will no longer be a need for on-site data centres or servers with everything being on the cloud. Alongside this, they will no longer have to pay for the round-the-clock electricity that maintains the data centres and servers. This in turn would greatly reduce money spent by organisations.

Even though it may be beneficial financially for financial organisations, does it benefit employees? Especially when they may be working anywhere around the world.

Whether in the office or at home, employees should have the same capabilities to work.

Just like in many job sectors, for employees to be able to work to the best of their abilities, accessibility, is needed. Whether that be to key data information or just access to the internet. It’s no different for employees of financial organisations. In an industry that revolves around figures, having access to the right data is paramount for employees to be able to work.

In a working day and age that sees significant numbers of employees now working either in a hybrid or remote capacity, financial organisations must be able to provide their employees with the means to be able to work anywhere. 34% of UK office workers believe that their company does not prioritise the investment they need for better hybrid working.  Via the use of cloud computing, financial organisations will be able to greatly support employees. Wherever they are working.

One of the major benefits of cloud computing services is the cloud technology’s ability to scale elastically. This is possible as a result of the cloud delivering the right amount of resources for employees. No matter where they are based. Whether this is more storage, bandwidth or the relevant data needed.

Nevertheless, with the importance of the data and the importance of the work that they do, is cloud computing reliable and secure enough for financial organisations to invest in it?

Reliability and Security, even from home

Financial organisations in general have access to a lot of information and data. Whether that be the organisation’s data or their clients. Some of the information that they have access to is very sensitive as well.

An overview from IT Governance discovered 1,243 security incidents in 2021, this represented an 11% increase in security incidents from 2020 to 2021. With this trend looking to continue, financial organisations need to have a computing system in place that protects the data no matter where people are trying to access it.

Cloud computing and its security technologies, and controls strengthen organisations’ security overall. Protecting key data and organisational applications. This is done via the cloud firewalls providing a layer of protection around cloud assets by blocking malicious and harmful web traffic.

Increasingly data is needed to be accessed anywhere at different times. This leaves sensitive data vulnerable. Whilst at the same time increasing the need for organisations to implement technologies that will allow employees to work the same way anywhere.

Yet still, the question must be asked, can financial organisations operate effectively without implementing cloud computing?

Cloud Computing just makes things easier

How organisations and employees work has changed. Now with the advancements in technology, people can work at anytime, anywhere at any place. Because of this change in working style, there’s a greater need for on-demand delivery of IT resources.

If financial organisations fail to find the appropriate technology to help support their employees in this new era of work, then they will be putting their organisations in danger of falling behind. Not only in terms of supporting their employees but also in cost and security efficiency.

Already 70% of banking institutions that took part in Gartner’s survey are expected to increase their cloud spending in 2022. So maybe financial organisations have realised the importance of cloud computing and how its capabilities can substantially help the way organisations run. But those financial organisations that have not, risk putting the organisation at risk in the future.

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