How the Cloud is Changing Telecommuting for the Better

Technology has changed everything, and the ability to telecommute is one of those.
In fact, telecommuting trend data collected by GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com shows:

  • 50% of the US workforce has a job that is at least partially compatible with telework or telecommuting
  • 20-25% of the workforce telecommutes at some frequency (2.8% work at least part-time from home)
  • 80-90% of the workforce would like to telecommute at least part-time
  • Fortune 1000 company employees are not at their desk 50-60% of the time
  • The amount of regular, non-self-employed work-at-home employees has increased 140% since 2005

The growing trend for telecommuters and telework is not likely to decline anytime soon. The reasons for the increase include more employees wishing to work from home, the reduced costs and subsequent savings for employers, and a larger geographic pool of qualified candidates for employers to choose from. However, this has not always been the case, as mobile work was once rife with logistical hindrances.

Many years ago, mobile workplaces were an obstacle for agencies that had information to protect and transfer. Employees had issues accessing software, sharing large documents, and keeping their computers and software secure and updated. But the cloud has changed all that, thanks to its versatility and the following capabilities:

Automation.

With the cloud, software and security updates are installed automatically to any computer connected to the server. But, if your software itself is cloud-based, there’s no need to be connected to the server at all. When the software is updated, anyone using it has the most secure and updated version available from the time they log in.

Security.

Because information is stored on the cloud, it is secured by the server, and not by individual devices. Agencies can rest easier knowing that the user has the newest, most up-to-date software and the data is secured on multiple servers by well-known providers. (Note, however, that securing an individual’s computer is a completely different security issue, as explained in this article: The Problem With Cyber Security Hacks).

File and Data Sharing.

Before cloud computing, file sharing required individuals to transfer data from one computer to another, or one server to another using file drives, floppy disks, email, or cloud-based services like Dropbox (where items were uploaded and downloaded using the internet). But with online and cloud-based services, information is transferred immediately and simultaneously between the user and the cloud, so all parties logged in can access and transfer the data to each other from moment to moment. You only see the most immediate, relevant and up-to-date data and files, and many people can be working in the system at the exact same time.

Data Backup.

Before the cloud, information had to be stored on individual computers, which are susceptible to natural disasters, hacking, data loss, and damage. But with cloud-based services, information and data is stored as soon as it is created so it cannot be lost. In addition, the servers that store this data are highly secure, and because data is stored in multiple locations instead of a single storage facility, it is impervious to fire, flood, blackout, or other disaster.

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