During uncertain economic times, business leaders need to focus on controlling costs and increasing efficiency. At the same time, executives are under increased pressure to grow revenue, reach new customers, and keep pace with competitors. Today, C-level decision-makers are turning to cloud technology to not only cut costs and increase efficiencies but also to add enhanced capabilities to grow revenues, engage more customers, and scale. I’d like to share my thinking on why cloud is so compelling in this context.
Benefits of Cloud Solutions
Cost savings: Cloud solutions can help companies save costs by reducing their IT infrastructure expenses. By moving to the cloud, companies can avoid the upfront costs of purchasing and maintaining hardware, software, and other infrastructure, and instead pay only for what they use on a subscription basis. This can be particularly helpful during an economic downturn when companies need to cut costs.
Scalability: Cloud solutions are highly scalable, meaning that companies can quickly and easily scale their computing resources up or down to meet changing business demands. This can be especially important during an economic downturn, when companies may need to be more flexible to adjust to changing market conditions.
Remote Work: The COVID-19 pandemic has shown the benefits of remote work, and cloud solutions can provide the necessary infrastructure for employees to work remotely. This can be particularly useful during an economic downturn when companies need to find ways to operate more efficiently with fewer resources.
Improved Collaboration: Cloud solutions also enable better collaboration among employees, even if they are working remotely. This can be important during a downturn when companies need to work more closely together to overcome challenges and find new opportunities.
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Uber Goes All in on Cloud
A timely example of how cloud and multi-cloud solutions can both cut costs and increase scale is the announcement last month of Uber’s partnering with Google Cloud and Oracle. The strategic benefits were underscored by Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi’s comments during the announcement:
“Uber is revolutionizing the way people, products, and services move across continents and through cities. To deliver on that promise for customers while building value for shareholders, we needed a cloud provider that will help us maximize innovation while reducing our overall infrastructure costs. Oracle provides an ideal combination of price, performance, flexibility, and security to help us deliver incredible customer service, build new products, and increase profitability.”
“Uber is revolutionizing the way people, products, and services move across continents and through cities. To deliver on that promise for customers while building value for shareholders, we needed a cloud provider that will help us maximize innovation while reducing our overall infrastructure costs,” Khosrowshahi said. Specifically referencing Oracle, he added that the company “provides an ideal combination of price, performance, flexibility, and security to help us deliver incredible customer service, build new products, and increase profitability.”
To put this into perspective, Uber’s research and development budget, which includes technology and platform investments, hit $2.6B in 2022, an increase of 31% year over year. At the same time, Uber’s monthly users have increased to over 118 million, up from 93 million in 2021. As one of the original “unicorns,” Uber simply can’t ignore growth. At the same time, the company is highly focused on profitability. Cloud technology is clearly one of the ways it will get there.
Overall, cloud solutions can help companies become more efficient, flexible, and agile during an economic downturn, which can be critical for their survival and success. At the same time, cloud technologies provide growth and scale benefits, enabling business decision-makers the ability to balance growth and cost initiatives without sacrificing one for the other.
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