Cloud computing – Ready to make the switch?

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Cloud computing – Ready to make the switch?

What if communicating, writing, and sharing took place in a single window? What if there were no need for endless e-mails going back-and-forth? Do you know that feeling of editing a document for someone and constantly getting different versions of the same document? What if you only had one document with every member of your team working on it at once, and everything being saved on the Cloud instantly? What if you could do all of this whilst video chatting with your co-workers?

Innesco was invited by the Grove Group at The Brewery in London for the Gone Google Roadshow. I was expecting something very formal, and here’s what Google gave me: lovely catering, drinks, a lot of interaction and free Google headphones. It was all about trying its Cloud solutions, asking our questions and getting answers on concerns about security and listening to experiences of those who have signed up to the service. The combination of great speakers, the right product, and a chance to interact with it, along with a fantastic venue made me realise why a Google event is so special.

But what exactly are Google and Grove selling? Google’s Matthieu Pujol (@pujolmatthieu) reminded us about the consumerisation of the web: all of Google’s sectors of activity are businesses, from Search Engine, to Analytics, and more recently Cloud technology. Our personal use of technology is now what dictates the use companies make of it.

Google Apps for Business is an office software solution relying on the Cloud, completely browser-based. You can compare it to Microsoft’s new Office 365. In this article on the Grove group’s website, you’ll be able to see a comparison between both of these solutions. You’ve probably seen the ads for Microsoft’s new software suite. But you’ve most likely never even heard of Google’s equivalent.
After all, there were no free Google-branded WiFi benches in London, as great as the Microsoft campaign was. Nor were there WiFi hotspots embedded into magazine pages. We’ve known the benefits of Cloud computing for years, however attending this event has reinforced our convictions of the benefits these solutions can offer the industry. Cloud computing is the future of communications.

In Public Relations, we must always keep up-to-date with the latest trends. The shift to “visual” PR is in full flow, and those not keeping up with these evolutions will not survive. Tweeting is a wonderful way to stay in touch with all the important actors of your industry. But that’s so 2010. Ever heard of Vine? If you haven’t we’re sure you wouldn’t be afraid to make the switch. It has undeniable advantages when it comes to communicating.

I’m amazed at how things have been stuck in the mid-2000s when it comes to clever use of office IT. For some reason, our industry, so happy to embrace change, doesn’t consider it everywhere. 50% of all UK mobile users have a smartphone. Most -if not all- of the industry is using them. Why do we stick to solutions that do not operate on our precious smartphones and tablets? Let’s face it, we all have access to business apps on our iPhones, Androids, Windows Phones, Blackberrys, heck even on our Linux phones!

The point is that nowadays, in any industry, everyone is mobile, and working in a global context. I’m an intern here at Innesco, and even I had to go abroad for the company and work on presentations. The tone has been set.

Everyone agrees that innovation and diversity equals survival. Along with change comes added productivity and efficiency. So maybe it’s time to embrace the new and consider all your communications options?

Will you make the switch to the Cloud? Would you go for Microsoft Office 365, or Google Apps for Business? And why? Ask us or tell us about it on Twitter @Inn_Tweets.

Alexandre Verpoort, Research Analyst Intern

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