No one will argue with the fact that the Internet has changed practically everything about the modern business landscape. Digging even deeper, however, the true impact can be seen in cloud computing. Information is no longer tethered to local machines and can instead be accessed from anywhere with an Internet connection, opening up a new frontier for working and communicating remotely. Each year brings new changes to the cloud landscape, and 2018 will be no exception to the rule.
So, what does the near future of cloud computing look like? Here are 4 predictions on where things will most likely be going in 2018 and beyond.
1. Niche Application Availability
Most of the first applications to truly take advantage of the cloud were relatively broad-reaching in nature. Salesforce, for example, helped to pioneer the cloud and has been utilized across a wide variety of industries for years. As more and more players enter into the world of developing cloud applications, specialization and niche focus will naturally enter into the equation. This is a great thing for businesses looking to embrace cloud technology, as it opens up additional options and also drives more competition in the industry among software vendors.
2. Continued Integration of Business Process Management Software
Technology has certainly made it easier to manage many day-to-day business practices. Many organizations are still stuck in the dark age, however, utilizing outdated software that can only be accessed from a single PC or on a localized network. Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is constantly in flux, which means the ability to access and edit information from anywhere at anytime is a prerequisite to success. Choosing an ERP on a cloud platform is always a better idea than the alternative, and such applications represent the future of cloud technology.
3. Hybrid Cloud Adoption
For organizations that have handled the vast majority of processes via a localized, on-premises network over many years, moving absolutely everything to the cloud isn’t always a feasible option. Sticking with an outdated approach won’t do a business any favors, either, which is why the “hybrid cloud” is likely to grow significantly in 2018. This approach essentially combines the best of both worlds, allowing for on-premises management of solutions juxtaposed with the convenience and rapid response times the cloud has become known for.
4. Increasing Departmental Involvement in the Cloud
Before cloud technology really began to take off, the IT department typically served as “go-between” for most departments in an organization. The cloud has made interfacing with technology easier than ever, though, which is why departments such as human resources, sales and marketing are now able to take things into their own hands. Thus, the reliance on IT professionals throughout a given workday will continue to decrease significantly in 2018.
The cloud is certainly a huge part of many people’s’ lives, but things are just getting started. One thing is for sure—businesses and organizations that don’t embrace the cloud fully by 2020 will only suffer as a result.