This week I attended the DiG2015 conference in Newcastle with some great talks and workshops about surviving and thriving in a world where “digital disruption” is happening all around us. This means being flexible and agile enough to embrace the rapid pace of change that’s constantly coming our way through innovations in internet technology. Think of what Uber has done to the taxi industry or Air BnB to hotels. This can happen in any sector. How will it affect schools?
(Conference videos can be viewed with payment at https://vimeo.com/ondemand/2015digfestivalnewcastle)
One of the strategies available to businesses (including schools) to help become and stay agile is to take advantage of cloud-based systems. These “software as a service” applications can replace software that has traditionally been installed on in-house servers and even on client computers. One example is Xero for finance and accounting. Another is our own Educonnex for school administration.
Cloud computing was the topic of an excellent presentation given by Levi Sauerbrei who is the CEO of his company Nerd Butler based in Texas USA. Here are just two of his slides, the first showing the benefits of cloud systems, the second outlining how to get started with cloud computing. These two slides encapsulate some great advice when considering if/when you should move to a cloud-based service.
- It’s not “all or nothing”. Moving business to the cloud can be done in stages.
- Pick an area of the business that is inefficient, costly, or taking up to many resources.
- Experiment! Take advantage of free trial periods and vendor support teams.
- Be sure to engage the affected employees to get their feedback.
- When it’s time to make the move, engage the appropriate professional services.