Many forward-thinking organizations are now implementing the foundational steps toward full cloud integration. Cloud computing can be understood most simply as the movement of data and software from internal (local) to external (remote) servers and hard drives. It is projected that within 10 to 15 years, the cloud computing market will grow by over $100 billion as the demand for this technology grows. This article highlights a few of the changes this impressive growth will necessitate in the way organizations utilize their software and tools.
Information technology (IT) experts believe software will become almost completely detached from hardware in the future, with an increasing number of applications being stored on remote servers rather than on a user’s own local hard drive. This change in storage location offers a number of key advantages, including increased cybersecurity and a unification of end-user experiences.
While users today are tasked with upgrading software to address security vulnerabilities on their own, for example, a centralized software application allows developers to patch a single program installation that then filters down to all users. With the additional potential of the single application instance being placed on a large, advanced server drive, experts predict to see larger and more complex applications that can take full advantage of the potential of cloud systems.
Modular programs are likely to be the focus of cloud software development as they allow modification of an application’s components without shutting down the entire program. This allows developers to focus on problem areas while maintaining core functionality for software users. On the other hand, developers will soon need to consider how these modular components interact with multiple cloud servers. If a program’s components are each stored in separate clouds, then developers will have to ensure solid service agreements to reduce the possibilities that users would lose access to key parts of their programs.
There are additional benefits for organizations that implement cloud-based storage systems. The ability to centralize data from various sources via the cloud will enable companies to create substantial databases. The information extracted from these databases can be used for predictive analysis about target markets, consumer behavior and business trends, giving companies a distinct competitive advantage.
Cybersecurity Jobs Projected to Grow
With continued advancements in low-power processors and other chip technology, companies can optimize investments and scale operations continuously, leading to greater revenue, higher profit margins and greater operational agility. It is predicted that future innovations will have the potential to enable datacenter communication at a speed of hundreds of gigabytes per second. As such, information will be transmitted throughout these informational networks at a greater rate at a lower cost than ever before. These continued advancements in technology will likely lead companies to create larger applications and utilize data in more complex and intelligent ways.
Such marked changes in the way we interact with computers will certainly necessitate a period of transition. The movement of a large percentage of an organization’s workflow to an offsite server does raise some questions about cybersecurity. This will demand a significant investment in physical security, including biometric scans, electronic passes and alarm systems. Server hosts will also need to guarantee a constant and reliable source of power. Where once a power outage meant reduced productivity for a single company, it would now potentially halt the work of hundreds or thousands of employees across multiple organizations and time zones.
The shift to cloud computing brings new concerns about hacking and other security breaches, factors likely to contribute to the growing demand for cybersecurity professionals. Studies by Cisco and RAND Corp. have identified a shortage of qualified employees, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that jobs for information security analysts will jump by 37% through the decade ending in 2022.
If companies can ensure constant, reliable and safe connection to a cloud server, businesses stand to gain tremendously in productivity and efficiency with the move to cloud-based storage.