Updated: Jul 1
Cloud services have been in existence for some time, the scope and variety of services offered to consumers expand and constantly diversify, creating an ever-shifting environment in which businesses must navigate. It fell to individual companies’ IT departments for years to manage and direct their cloud services and options. However, as the market changes, it becomes a much larger task to ensure a company receives the absolute best choices regarding their capabilities with cloud computing.
That’s where cloud service brokers enter the picture. Standing between customers and cloud service providers, they offer a one-stop shopping option for acquiring and managing cloud services. There has been a drastic upswing in demand for these entities recently, and the trend shows no sign of stopping any time soon. As the benefits of and demand for cloud services continue to increase, working with an intermediary to get the best possible results becomes an essential element in companies’ cloud strategy.
The rising demand comes from a variety of sources. As more businesses move online or expand their online business models, the need for remote access grows as well. Likewise, as a greater variety of services become available, it becomes increasingly important to have a method for acquiring the best services in each category. In addition, increased features and lower overhead make cloud options increasingly enticing for companies to adopt.
Related: Cloud Computing
Multiple Stimuli for Rapid Adoption
The cloud services industry has expanded at a breakneck pace. Market predictions predict that the worldwide industry will grow to 12.9 billion by 2025. While there is a baseline growth rate due to individual users, several other factors drive this rapid movement.
With the COVID-19 crisis ongoing, massive numbers of companies have suddenly switched to remote work environments to support health protocols. This overnight adjustment has, in turn, led to an increased need for cloud-based systems and services to make remote work more efficient. As a result, businesses clamor for the simplest, most effective options. While this could be seen as a temporary spike in popularity, the reality is that many companies will continue with remote work situations, at least on some level. So they will continue to require access to their newly acquired cloud technology. In addition, in many cases, companies find that the use of cloud services streamlines their business operations such that it precludes a return to their old systems.
Another key driver is the changing nature of business itself. As consumers change their methods of interacting with the world, including an increased interest in online interaction with businesses, cloud computing becomes more important to help companies to handle their workflows remotely. One extreme example of this trend is the retail and consumer goods market, where stores are rapidly being required to have robust online presences with the ability to seamlessly maneuver from service to service to get their business done.
Businesses always look to find ways to increase margins. However, in times of financial crisis, the search for economic advantages increases exponentially. Many companies find that moving to cloud-based services provides significant benefits from a monetary perspective. At the moment, many companies intend to lower their overhead and decrease capital expenditures. Cloud-based services can offer a low overhead means of doing business. In addition, they reduce the need for massive spending required to build and manage their own systems. By working with a cloud services broker, they can also simplify billing for the cloud services they do use, combining the expense into a single bill rather than many due to multiple companies. An additional financial advantage is that brokers are expert negotiators, so the customer is more likely to get the right price for their services.
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Simplification of Provider Selection and Management
As the cloud services market expands, new providers emerge constantly. With so many options on the market, it becomes difficult for a company’s staff to differentiate the best options to work with their needs. In these cases, it becomes a massive advantage to work with an expert in the field who can readily analyze the best options based on a company’s specific circumstances. This expertise comes in the form of cloud services brokers who have a thorough understanding of the possibilities and are experts at recommending the right ones for a given situation. In addition, by working through an intermediary, companies can simplify the management process. Instead of the need to interact with a range of service providers, the company can work through the single face of the cloud services broker instead.
Multiple Providers, Interoperability, and Customizability
Working with one provider leaves a company to deal with that provider’s products and services exclusively, even if they aren’t superior. By working with a cloud services broker, it’s possible to cherry-pick the best services from multiple providers to obtain ideal solutions in every case. This makes a company’s cloud services strategy not only more customizable but simpler. Finally, in many cases, the services of multiple providers should work together as one cohesive whole. A good cloud services provider can work with the services to create what appears to be a single interface.
Convenience of Upgrade, Repair, and Maintenance
Upgrade, repair, and maintenance can result in unfortunate downtime on company networks and services. By working with a cloud services broker, it’s possible to make these processes not only dependable but operable with little downtime. This advantage is because the brokerage manages them rather than the customer.
Related: IT Support
Cloud services are booming, and cloud service brokers are growing right along with them. The increased demand due to rapid adoption and numerous other advantages makes cloud service brokers an increasingly pressing need for companies moving to the cloud. With increasing numbers of companies doing so, that need only continues to grow.
Do you need help finding the best cloud providers for you and your business? Reach out to Liftoff IT today!