By Alister Maple-Brown - Rockend CEO
||Cloud based applications and cloud computing are hot topics in the business and technology world at the moment. That being said, many people don't actually know how the cloud works or what benefits cloud computing can provide to their business. So what is the cloud and how can it help your real estate business?
Simply put, cloud computing is the storage and access of data and programs over the internet instead of a server or hard drive sitting in your office. Gone are the days where offices would have rooms solely dedicated to the storage of their servers.
Cloud based applications allow you to access your data and software from anywhere at any time. This is particularly useful for property managers who are often on the road. The increased accessibility makes it easy to grow your business and allows your staff to work remotely. Your staff can work flexible hours from home or in the office, creating an appealing work option for many. This flexibility appeals to many businesses and can help you provide a positive work life balance to your staff.
By switching to a cloud based application you can save thousands of dollars per year on hardware and maintenance costs, as all servers are stored remotely in a secure data centre. Cloud based applications automatically update to the latest software versions, meaning you no longer have to buy or upgrade the software application yourself, or pay for an IT professional to assist you.
Security is a top priority for every business. All real estate businesses hold highly sensitive data that they need to store securely. Cloud based applications can provide a secure depository for all data, no matter what happens to the machine you're accessing it from. It is important to ensure your software provider is reputable and backed by a certified hosting provider, such as Microsoft or Amazon.
Digital data can be stored almost indefinitely, eliminating the need for paper records, saving you valuable office space. Taking a daily back up is a thing of the past as cloud based data is automatically backed up. These backups eliminate downtime in offices and ensures your data is secure.
With technology changing at such a rapid pace it's hard to keep up, but without a doubt cloud based software is a long-running trend that is here to stay. With short deployment times, increased accessibility, secure backups and multiple cost saving features, it is definitely worth investigating for your business.
Alister Maple-Brown is the CEO of leading property management software provider, Rockend. After completing his BA in both Australia and the United States, he worked on Capitol Hill in Washington DC, followed by two years as an analyst, trainer and business development manager in the worldwide sales division at Inktomi, a rapid growth software business in Silicon Valley, California. Alister has been with Rockend since 2001 and as Sales Manager grew new business revenues by 40% over the years, before moving into the marketing team until 2007. For the following three years he led the product development team before moving to the role of General Manager of PropertyTree, Australia's first cloud based property management solution. In mid-2012 Alister became CEO of Rockend. Alister is dedicated to the development of innovative technology which will become even more central to Rockend’s future progress in the property industry.