Does Cloud Really Matter When it Comes to Collaboration?

July 27, 2012 - 1 Comment

Recent numbers from Gartner suggest that by 2016, enterprise public cloud services spending will reach $207 billion, up from $109 billion in 2012.  Additionally, according to IDG’s Unified Communications and Collaboration survey, 90% of organizations plan to invest in new or upgraded unified communications and collaboration technology in the next 12 months.

It’s clear that businesses see a lot of opportunity in the cloud and collaboration, but how exactly can it help your business? At Cisco, we see four main ways that organizations can benefit from services that provide collaboration in the cloud, such as those offered with the Cisco Hosted Collaboration Solution:

You Can Create Unified User Experiences: Cloud-based collaboration solutions deliver a consistent experience across all devices – something important with the increasingly expanding array of devices used for work. This means, that someone using a smartphone from their car will be having the same WebEx meeting experience as the person joining from their desktop computer in a cubicle and the lucky coworker that is dialing in from their tablet at a sunny outdoor café. The application will look and feel the same so there isn’t a learning curve to use it on a different device and you can be assured that there won’t be any difference in the features and functionalities between users as well. 

You Can Optimize Resources: One of the many ways that collaboration delivers value is through operational ROI that allows organizations to avoid unnecessary costs and improve processes, but the resource gains from cloud collaboration go well beyond fiscal benefits.  Since the cloud can unify and automate operations across employees and offices, it allows IT and business executives to refocus their energy and investments less on operational issues and more on strategic priorities ultimately leading to business transformation.  

You Can Enable IT & Business Agility: True business agility can only be achieved with an agile IT infrastructure. With a hosted solution, your IT team doesn’t have to worry about constantly downloading software updates across a slew of different supported devices. Instead, the service is evergreen and is constantly refreshed and run by your service provider, so your employees are always in sync with the latest versions of the most up-to-date apps.

You Can Maintain Control & Management: It is a common misconception that moving to the cloud involves a loss of visibility and control of the applications across an organization. In fact, in many cases a hosted solution can actually offer business greater ability to establish and enforce consistent cloud-based security policies, receive real-time threat intelligence, and enable greater scalability and improved performance.

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  1. Fully agree with the benefits stated Doron. I’d add to those the perfect companion that the cloud is to the emerging BYOD trend. Being able to access the applications anywhere and from any device makes it much easier for users to collaborate. Our Webex collaboration portfolio is indeed a very good example of CLOUD+BYOD enabled solution.