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What Would Businesses Look Like Without Cloud Storage?

Cloud services have become an indispensable part of our businesses, allowing us to store documents off-site in a way that is instantly accessible.  In fact, businesses have come to rely on cloud storage to a degree that they probably don’t even realize.  One company, Gradwell Communications, looked to see what our businesses would look like if we didn’t have cloud storage and the results were astounding.

Physical versus cloud

One of the big draws of cloud storage is that nothing physically needs to be held on the premises and when you consider the number of files that every business saves every day, that’s a lot of space you would require to physically house them.  Then you would need to have some sort of security in place for sensitive information such as customer personal data.  And you would need to protect the premises as best as possible against damage from external factors.

But the single biggest problem would be the space required to house all those ring binders or files containing all that information.  In their study, Gradwell Communications surveyed a range of industries and looked at:

  • What sector they worked in
  • What their role entailed
  • What devices they used
  • What file types they used
  • Rough idea of the number of files made or used on a daily basis

With this information, the company created four characters to use to show the kind of information they found – a call center worker in customer services, a dentist, a college lecturer and an IT data analyst working for an accountancy company.

What Would Businesses Look Like Without Cloud Storage? - 1

What they found

The call center worker most often used a mobile device during their work and the most common amount of storage on these was 16GB.  They most often used Word documents in terms of file type with an average file size of around 296KB.  In just nine days, if all their files were printed and stored in hard copy, their files would completely fill a house.

Among those working in the healthcare sector such as the dentist, tablets were the most commonly used device and these have a storage of around 32GB on average.  In this industry, PDF documents were the most commonly used and their average size is larger, at 410KB.  So, in just five days, the files from the dentist would fill a lorry.

The college lecturer works most often on a computer, with a storage of around 320GB on average.  Image files were most commonly used and these have an average size of 0.5MB per file.  This means that is around 10 days they would fill a double decker bus with their files.

The IT sector came next, with the laptop being the most commonly used device and having an average storage of 1T.  Excel files were mostly used and these have an average file size of 700KB with the data held.  One 1T laptop can hold around 1,500,000 excel files but print that all out and you would fill a plane in just three days.

Why cloud storage works so well

Very few businesses have the physical space to store this kind of data so this clearly shows the benefits of cloud storage.  Not only is it safe, offsite and extremely efficient, there are no requirements for those hundreds of ring binders and all that shelf storage space.