As Late Show with David Letterman fades into delicious memory, let us note some statistics from that great show:
- As of the last show on May 20, there will have been 6,028 broadcasts of Late Show
- The first guest was Bill Murray. Murray is also the last announced scheduled guest on the show
- Regis Philbin has been on the show most often, with 136 appearances
- The first Top 10 list, “Things That Almost Rhyme with Peas,” first aired on the previous show, Late Night, on September 18, 1985
And so, in honor of, and with apologies to, the great David Letterman, and because this is top of mind as I spent all last week working with Microsoft to explain to my small businesses brothers and sisters why they should move to the cloud, here is my small business version of his ever-popular Top 10 List:
Top 10 Reasons to Move Your Business to the Cloud
10. It’s the future: Whether we like it or not, and whether you want to or not, your business will be moving to the cloud. Of course, you already do email in the cloud, but it is just as easy to move your other business applications there as well, be it is document storage, security, office applications, backup, finances & accounting, sales & marketing, or what have you.
9. It’s safer: Cloud services are housed in remote servers, servers that have the best security systems available, and which are always being updated with the latest updates. This past year, my Number 1 trend for small business for 2015 was security. It’s important to take it seriously.
8. Larry “Bud” Melman (Oops, that’s from Top 10 best Letterman bits ever)
7. It’s easier than you think: There are two main pain points for most small businesses – time and money. For many, it is that second factor that prevents them from making the necessary move to the cloud. They think it will be too time consuming, that there will be too steep of a learning curve.
Will there be a learning curve? Of course, you bet. But not a big one. Truly.
In the end, what you will find is that having your business systems always on, always available to you and your team from anywhere on any device will save you money, and, yes, time.
Are you happy you learned to type? Same idea.
6. It’s where the juice is: One of the fun parts of this job is that I am always getting notice of the latest and greatest things in small business. In the past two years, what I have seen is that cloud apps are where all of the money and creative energy is at. Really smart people are spending a lot of energy creating cool apps to help you run your business better. A search will help you find some. They are amazing.
5. It will make you more productive: There is a cloud-based solution, i.e. Office 365, for whatever business issue you are dealing with. Period.
4. Norman rides a scooter (Oops, that’s one of the top 10 Stupid Pet Tricks.)
3. It’s scalable: According to BizJournals.com, “The cloud is highly scalable. Resources and employees can be added or removed to and from the network quickly without any large investments.”
2. It is affordable and always up to date: As mentioned, money is our other typical pain point. As such, an issue small businesses have long faced is when to make an investment in IT updating and infrastructure. The thinking goes something like this, “We have been running this operating system (of accounting software, or computer system, or whatever) for several years now and we know we need an upgrade. But it’s not really in the budget. Next year for sure!”
One of the beautiful things about running your business in the cloud is that cloud apps are always updated, always the latest version. And, not only that, but because you are not “buying” the whole package, but instead “renting” what you need, moving to the cloud becomes a very affordable option.
And the Number 1 reason to move your business to the cloud:
1. It will make your life easier: Being able to access all of your data and applications anywhere, anytime, from any device, by anyone on your team really is a revolution for the better.
And with that, let’s say, Thanks Dave, and goodnight everybody!
Steve Strauss is a senior small business columnist at USA TODAY and author of 15 books, including The Small Business Bible.