Manufacturing firms face significant challenges including complicated supply chains, a rising cost for labor, and of course, local and offshore competition. Many manufacturers today are overcoming these challenges by working in the Cloud.
The Cloud is changing how we do business. As manufacturers strive to compete with mounting global competition and keep up with customer expectations, they are taking advantage of the lower costs, increased flexibility and enhanced efficiency that working in the Cloud offers.
1. Lower Costs
With the Cloud, you can reduce costs and get the most value from your IT assets. When you outsource the management of your IT infrastructure to an IT Service Provider via the Cloud, your operational, maintenance and administration costs are reduced. The need for you to employ staff to maintain, administer and update hardware and software are eliminated. Plus, you’ll be free from the worry of IT headaches.
And, with cloud services, you can save from investments in software, hardware and IT infrastructure solutions. All of this can be “rented” via the Cloud. You’ll lower your capital outlay and free up cash for other initiatives. Plus, when you use cloud services, you can benefit from user-based billing where you only pay for what you need and nothing more.
2. Increase Flexibility
Change is a constant, and all companies, including manufacturing companies, must be able to adapt to change. Static, on-premise IT solutions and infrastructures can hold you back. The Cloud supports flexibility in a number of ways.
Scalability: Cloud computing affords manufacturing businesses unprecedented flexibility and scalability to upgrade IT requirements periodically when needs arise. You can scale cloud services to meet your increasing or decreasing needs. If you take on a new customer, you can spin up your cloud services instantly. And if you lose one, you can reduce the number of users in your cloud-based software plan. This is especially useful for manufacturers that operate on a seasonal cycle.
Mobility: Before the Cloud, if you wanted to get work done, you had to go to your office and use your desktop computer. This made it impossible to retrieve your digital files if you were stuck at home or traveling. Today, if you need to view a file or work on a project, you simply go online using the device of your choice and work in the Cloud.
Agility: We mentioned how important it is to be able to adapt to change. Working in the Cloud provides this from a technical point of view. You can more quickly and easily adjust to new conditions. With traditional on-premise IT solutions, this process is slower and more complex. The Cloud allows for faster application deployments, data backups and computing power.
3. Enhanced Collaboration, Efficiency & Productivity
Leading manufacturers use cloud technologies to enable easy collaboration that keeps everyone informed and working. Cloud-based access to data enables more organized and successful results.
Do More With Less: With the Cloud, you can do more with less. This drives efficiency. You’ll benefit from a shorter time-to-market because using cloud solutions is less complicated than using on-premise solutions. This saves time and money.
No More Duplication Of Efforts: Eliminating duplication of efforts increases efficiency. Changes to documents can be made in real time, so your employees won’t need to upload, download or email versions to one another –or wonder if they’re working on the most recent documents.
Enterprise Resource Planning In The Cloud: And, with cloud-based ERP systems and other applications, your staff will experience higher rates of productivity. They can optimize their time when accessing, retrieving and processing information to carry out operations more efficiently. This increases their productivity.
Working in the Cloud lets you assign and monitor tasks, get metrics from your applications, and manage your configurations in single, easy-to-understand screens. Using a centralized cloud-based location means less time going back and forth with your managers to ascertain information.
MSPs Eliminate Downtime With The Cloud: Retrieval of information stored in the Cloud is faster than doing so on in-house servers. This is because your cloud structure is continually managed by your IT Managed Service Provider whose primary responsibility is to eliminate downtime. With uninterrupted continuity of your manufacturing operations, you’ll increase productivity and add long-term value to your business.