I feel compelled…there is just so much information out there about cloud computing that who can keep up? Which explains why so many people that want to talk about it like they know what they are talking about are often just plain wrong. Well, I shouldn’t say wrong… probably not wrong for 12 months ago… but today they are uninformed I suppose.
Take for example the recent article by Alex Vuchnich, titled, “Cloud computing and the paperless office for CPAs.” The article is well written and makes some good points, however some statements I fear could lead to inaccurate information being shared.
Mr. Vuchnich is absolutely right that cloud computing does create a great synergy with paperless initiatives. However suggesting that there needs to be more convenient methods for accessing the cloud is like saying toilet paper should be delivered on something different than a roll. Today’s proliferation of broadband internet plus the ability to buy a laptop for under $300 that weighs nearly a pound I would say is pretty convenient. In addition, with the right cloud provider you can access it from any gateway to the internet you have available to you (note I didn’t say PC.) You can get to it from an iPhone, MAC, Linux, XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows Mobile, library computer, hotel computer, clients computer…etc, etc, etc. Doesn’t sounds terribly inconvenient if you ask me….
OK, on to the “pitfalls”
“…constant internet connectivity.” Yes this fact is true, however in the typical metropolitan area the price to get high speed internet access can be as low at $59/month.
“…firm’s user controls” If your service provider of choice isn’t assisting with the firm’s user controls then choose another service provider!
“…a disclosure of client data.” Not so much. There have been a number of discussions about cloud computing in accordance with HIPPA regulation and with the appropriate measures in place the transmission of patient data over a 128 bit SSL encrypted secure communication is acceptable. The same technology is also used for online banking and CC payments online.
“…applications that …may not be a good fit for the cloud computing model.” Well, yes…but not likely for a general office. If you are a radiologist or some other profession that uses specialized hardware connected to your system it might not currently work. Not to say that it won’t, Citrix (our cloud enabler of choice) can currently redirect many hardware devices. But your average business owner won’t have a problem. Scanners and printers work seamlessly with the cloud.
“…a complete transition is a long way off.” Shoot me an email and I will be happy to put you in contact with clients that have made a “complete transition.”
This technology isn’t tomorrow, it’s today!