Why user experience should be at the heart of every Cloud

While businesses the world over seem intent on jumping on the Cloud bandwagon at the moment, it’s important for those who have yet to make the leap (and equally for some of those who have already completed the transition) to remember why they are implementing the technology into their organisation.

Improving efficiency and reducing expenses are likely to be two of the main reasons behind any Cloud adoption – but while, in theory, these should be a matter of course as a result of the nature of such an innovation, there are no guarantees.

This is partially down to the so-called ‘human factor’. While making it easier for employees to pool resources and communicate with one another in a more effective manner should automatically result in a better streamlining of operations, if those workers aren’t 100 per cent behind the Cloud, this isn’t always the case.

Furthermore, if the workforce isn’t fully behind the new way of doing things, the business as a whole can ultimately end up suffering. Thankfully, it’s a scenario that can be easily avoided if the correct steps are taken in the lead-up to incorporating the technology.

The importance of user experience, therefore, should never be underestimated. As a business owner, if you’re about to spend capital on investing in a new Cloud system, you need to be certain that you will see value for money. This can partially be achieved by consulting with employees beforehand on what services they feel will make a difference to the way they do their jobs. Sometimes, the information you need is better coming from the horse’s mouth.

One case of where prior research could make a big difference is the implementation of bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies for Cloud working. In theory, this can offer a more flexible environment for both the company and its workers – although its introduction needs to be carefully considered when there is a risk of sensitive information being inadvertently shared with the outside world via a connected smartphone or tablet. Not only can this potentially compromise the organisation employing BYOD, but it can also result in possible legislative breaches.

Another consideration to be taken into account is whether or not the addition of applications will improve the efficiency of a Cloud service. Providers like Canopy often offer a range of programs to complement the network. For example, its Anytime Files app is an ideal solution for firms that need to share files with clients over a network that is more secure than the likes of DropBox. Similarly, Canopy Archives or Contracts are self-explanatory in what they offer users – meaning every company’s Cloud can be tailored to its own needs.

Ultimately, this technology can and should be beneficial to an organisation at all levels. If not, then business leaders need to be asking why. In an age when value for money has never been more sought-after, the merit of not jumping head-first into the Cloud and instead taking the time to understand what’s best for your firm on an individual basis shouldn’t be underestimated.