Google Drive Cloud and Small Business
I’m somewhat surprised to find that many people are still not familiar with Google Drive Cloud, how it works, and how it can be useful in just about any business environment.
History of Cloud Computing
When you update status on Facebook, check your bank account from your phone, or access information from another vendor who has given you password access…this is all cloud computing.
There is some disagreement surrounding who invented cloud computing, and when. We know that cloud computing has been around since the 1960’s. More recently, cloud computing has been used by Amazon, AT&T, and Google. The term “the cloud” is somewhat different from “cloud computing.” I tend to think that term “the cloud” is a brand created by Google.
The Cloud in Simple Terms
An in-house network is commonly setup for internal users to access and share the same files and documents. The cloud is not much different than that; offering a network kind of collaboration for those who share the password to access a document on Google Drive. Here are some really awesome takeaways:
- Cost: Using the cloud cuts out the high cost of hardware, and software updates. It allows small businesses to act fast and become more competitive. It allows better collaboration and communication. There are free versions and paid subscription versions of the cloud.
- Flexibility: Save internal bandwidth and increase your cloud capacity by utilizing remote servers. Anyone with a login and password to log into a shared document, from anywhere….at any time! As long as there is an internet connection, your team can collaborate, update, analyze data, etc. This is streamlining at its best. Google Sheet apps are available for your phone or other electronic device.
- Document Control: Before the cloud, businesses would rely on email to send files back and forth. With the cloud, updates that each person has made to any document are stored. The document then automatically updates for everyone so all can see one version, the most updated. The level of agility of the service is wonderful! Organize your files on Google Drive.
- Backup & Security: The cloud has its own backup / recovery system, and all updates, including security, are done for you. Lose your laptop? No problem. Data you have stored on the cloud are not going to be found on your laptop itself. However, you can remotely wipe data if needed.
- Templates: Google offers so many templates that can be used on the cloud. All you have to do is choose the one that best fits your needs. Make any modifications, and invite your team members by sharing your unique login and password. Google Document, Google Spreadsheet, Google Presentation.
Popularity of the Cloud
The usage and popularity of cloud is growing very fast, but some small businesses have yet to try. Using the cloud can save a lot of time and money, especially if you have business partners, contributors, consultants, etc. who reside outside of your physical office walls. Support forum for Google Drive cloud computing can be found at Google Drive User Community.