Making the cloud work for you: Amazon Web Services and the future of cloud computing

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Cloud computing is here to stay. Increasingly, organisations understand the benefits it can bring in terms of cost, agility, and the ability to scale up quickly, which makes choosing the right provider a particularly important decision.  

In the years to come, the cloud will continue to be where much of your work is done and home to your products, services, and data. In short, you require a long-term partner that meets your business needs now and can evolve with your organisation.  

Three services dominate the cloud computing sector: Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and Google. AWS is by far the largest, accounting for around one third of the market and generating revenues of $62.2 billion in 2021.  

If you are a senior leader considering which cloud service is right for your organisation’s digital transformation, AWS is likely to be on your radar. With that in mind, we’re taking a closer look at the cloud computing giant.  

WHY CHOOSE AWS FOR YOUR ORGANISATION? 

Cloud services such as AWS bring a number of benefits, including:   

Cost savings

The cost saved from not having to run your own on-site servers may seem obvious, but the benefits go far further than the hardware itself. Between 2010 and 2018, the energy expenditure for traditional office-based servers fell by roughly 50% as cloud data use increased five-fold. Without a server room, your organisation can also cut down on specialist IT headcounts, maintenance spend and staff overheads as well as free up costly office floor space.  

Productivity

The pandemic accelerated the shift to more flexible ways of working. In this environment, cloud services play a crucial role in enabling the effective remote and cross-team collaboration that improves productivity. Global access to cloud-based data, and the collaborative tools that are integrated into the AWS platform, ensure teams can work closely together on projects and share the latest information, wherever they are and whenever they need to.   

Scalability and adaptability

AWS’s extensive infrastructure gives your business unlimited cloud capacity, which is increasingly important as the demand for innovative online products and services grows. Gartner expects end-user spending on public cloud services to exceed $480 billion this year, and back in 2020 cloud-based customer relationship management accounted for 83% of the market according to Apps Run The World. That’s because the resilience, scalability and speed of cloud platforms underpins many of the technological advances that are redefining the customer experience. The flexibility of cloud services also enables organisations to tailor them to their specific business activities. For example, if a certain time of year requires greater cloud capacity it can be scaled up and reduced when it is no longer needed, so it is not left unused for the rest of the year. 

Security and reliability

With cloud data comes responsibility. The immense amount of information companies now store must be handled carefully – a data breach is bad for customers and your organisation’s reputation. Here you benefit from the size of AWS and the fact it works with healthcare providers and governments that require high levels of security, which you are unlikely to be able to replicate on your own. AWS has numerous security features such as the ability to store data in your region of choice and generate encryption keys.  

Sustainability

According to a study by Microsoft and WSP Global Inc., cloud storage is up to 93% more energy efficient than on-premises servers. Indeed, the cloud is an essential component to low-carbon computing. As companies look to reduce their carbon footprints, sustainability and environmental responsibility are key factors in choosing a cloud provider.  

WHAT COULD GO WRONG? 

Of course, there are risks with any digital service. We all have concerns about online security, but these can be addressed by adhering to cloud best practices like robust internal policies governing shared files, data encryption keys and scanning cloud storage files with anti-malware software. At MMT, we are experts at implementing the latest digital safety practices to secure your cloud activity.  

There is also the possibility of a service outage caused by human error, such as in 2017, when one such incident cost businesses an estimated $150 million – although this is a risk on any platform and a rare event if the right processes are put in place.  

Disruptions to your local internet service and therefore halting the flow of work is a more likely problem. But broadband providers are making increasing strides to stamp these out as cloud-based infrastructure becomes the norm for more enterprises.  


As Liam Gulliver, Senior Software Engineering Manager at MMT Digital, explains:

“Advances in broadband provision and the ability to create layers of robust security with platforms such as AWS make service disruptions increasingly rare. Perhaps the greatest issue we see is businesses struggling to make the most of cloud services and the digital transformations they enable. PWC conducted a study in which over 50% of companies it surveyed had failed to realise substantial value from their cloud investments.”  

 

HOW TO MAKE THE CLOUD WORK FOR YOU  

One way to ensure your organisation is embracing all the possibilities cloud services offer is to work with an agency that specialises in digital transformation. We can guide your business through their complexities. 

For example, we supported Vodafone's global cross-functional engineering teams to improve how they worked together to deliver digital products to customers at speed and scale. 

Together with people from all areas of the business we developed a roadmap that broke down silos, strengthened communication between teams and instilled a culture of agility, all based on the capabilities cloud computing offers.  

This has accelerated the delivery of digital innovations to the market, leading to an 85% reduction in monthly infrastructure costs, an application deployment time of 15 minutes down from 24 hours, and an environmental set-up lead time reduced from eight weeks to just 30 minutes.  

These are real world business benefits created in the cloud. They show the clear advantages of embracing cloud services and bringing on board the expert support companies need to fulfil their potential. These are the companies that will lead the way in the coming years because they will have the ability to meet the demands of the 21st century consumer.
 

If your organisation is considering a cloud-based service and needs support to choose and implement the right one, or if you’d like to get more from your current service, get in touch to find out how we can help: hello@mmtdigitial.co.uk