Ditch the PC, grab the cloud: How the browser is changing IT as we know it

This post is a part of our Change Management blog series. To read more on Change Management and big-picture tech strategy in the workplace, click here.

Cloud computing is moving the tech world forward in a myriad of ways, some of which are more apparent than others. Personal conveniences aside, one function that deserves attention is in the cloud’s capability to streamline the IT department.

This idea adheres well to a philosophy that Newmind Group holds close—that IT, conducted effectively, can (and should) serve as an integral and strategic element to any business. For a long time now, IT has typically been brushed aside as little more than the tech clean-up crew within an organization. In the interest of taking this reputation and putting it out to pasture, we need to consider that the problem may be connected to the tech environment that IT is working with.

The typical environment that many businesses are working with consist of heavy PCs—devices bogged down with complex and error-prone applications and hardware—and they call for a lot of IT attention. Between data backup, addressing viruses and updating hardware & software, these machines are sapping lots of time from the IT staff’s agenda, and none of these activities are moving the business forward—just treading water while maintaining needy technology.

Cloud Computing is Here to Stay

According to Gartner, “by 2014, IT organizations in 30% of Global 1000 companies will broker two or more cloud services for internal and external users, up from 5% in 2013.” The same study predicts that in the next five years, the term “cloud” will become a household business term, rather than just IT. In fact, 72% of Pew Research experts believe that the majority of office productivity will have transitioned to the cloud by 2020.

This means that, by 2020, we won’t be using PCs for writing documents or building spreadsheets. We’ll only be using a browser—removing the need for PCs entirely. Instead, lighter devices—running only browsers— will be deployed, increasing the importance of network infrastructure for bandwidth, and speed of data-access for mobility and better decision-making. Why wait until 2020?

How can the Cloud Help?

Imagine taking the same productivity tasks that 80% of your business is engaged with—word processing, email, and messaging—and running them through a browser, taking PC-dependent software out of the equation entirely. Not only does this transition do away with the software problem, but it gives businesses the option of running lighter, low-maintenance devices. Putting a large chunk of tech upkeep behind us, the result is a more engaged IT department, with a bigger investment in the company culture and more time to dedicate towards thinking forward.

With developments like this elevating our technology engagement every day, a simple value comes to the surface: IT shouldn’t be about technology, it should be about the people behind the technology. The move toward cloud computing won’t just help our networks run more efficiently, it will align IT strategy with corporate strategy and directly impact organizational goals. How has your business implemented the cloud?

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About

Matt Vollmar has been working in IT for about 20 years, doing everything from website creation to enterprise storage performance consulting. Eventually, through some strategic arm twisting from his boss, Matt tried out team leadership and discovered that it is actually a core passion for him! Before coming to Newmind, Matt worked as an Account Delivery Manager at Hewlett-Packard from his basement. Now Matt enjoys leading in the creative and innovative environment at Newmind AND sees the sunshine more than once a week.