The most important advantages of a time recording solution from the cloud

"Cloud computing use in Germany is booming" - under this title, the industry association Bitkom published the results of a survey on cloud use in German companies back in spring 2017.

ZEP Blog

"Cloud computing use in Germany is booming" - under this title, the industry association Bitkom published the results of a survey on cloud use in German companies back in spring 2017. Result: 65 percent of the companies surveyed use software, storage or computing power from the cloud. 57 percent of the managing directors and IT managers surveyed consider their company data in the public cloud to be "very secure" or "rather secure". So if they are not yet cloud computing users, IT managers in companies should immediately ask themselves whether they should not also venture "into the cloud" and why they should do so. This applies in particular to the use of software solutions for time recording

Cloud computing - what is it?

The question of what is behind the buzzword "cloud computing" is answered relatively quickly. The variety of solutions offered today in this operating model has increased significantly in recent years. And so today there will hardly be anyone who uses modern IT solutions in their private and/or professional everyday life who has not yet come into contact with the cloud. Because if you use the widespread e-mail programmes of the large telecoms providers and internet providers (Telekom, Vodafone, Freenet, GMX, web.de, etc.) or of software giants such as Google (GoogleMail) today, you are moving in the cloud. The same applies to the increasingly popular online storage services such as Dropbox, Apple iCloud or Microsoft OneDrive.

With all these offers, you do not store your data (emails, contacts, appointments) and documents locally on your computer, tablet or mobile phone, but in the IT infrastructure of the cloud service provider. The cloud service provider ensures that you have access to the application and the data and documents processed with it at any time and from anywhere via a browser. They also make sure that there is always enough memory, computing power and bandwidth available, regardless of whether it is just you or hundreds, thousands or even millions of users accessing the software at the same time. Just to mention one figure: GoogleMail already had more than one billion monthly users in February 2016!

Cloud computing in the corporate environment - data protection and data security

In addition to the technical challenges just outlined for the construction and operation of the corresponding cloud infrastructure, a particular challenge for providers of cloud computing solutions is the protection and security of the user data entrusted to them. You have probably already read that hackers have repeatedly succeeded in gaining access to the IT systems of even well-known cloud service providers, and in doing so have obtained confidential data such as e.g. compromising photos and videos of actresses to procure. For those affected, this may first of all be embarrassing and a violation of privacy. In a professional environment, such a data leak can have serious consequences for the affected company - and mean the "end" for the provider of the cloud service, because no one will trust this provider with their data in the future.

For this reason, providers of cloud computing solutions for businesses also focus on doing everything they can to protect and secure the customer data processed with their solution. They use the latest security technology, encryption both in the transmission of data and its storage on their systems, and take care to have their systems fully audited and certified by external security experts.

Time recording as a service: reasons for using time recording software from the cloud

And that is why it is now often data protection and data security that speak FOR the use of a software solution in general, and a time recording solution in particular (cf. Bitkom study from the beginning of the article). For small and medium-sized companies in particular, the effort they expend on data protection and data security will be significantly lower than with a professional cloud computing provider. As already mentioned, the latter risks its business if it does not take data protection and data security seriously. Many user companies, on the other hand, often lack the understanding, the know-how and the resources.

Another advantage of Time and Attendance as a Service is the access to the application independent of time and place, which has already been mentioned. This is especially true for companies in project-intensive industries such as management consultancy or the IT industry. In these industries, employees are mostly working on-site at the customer's premises. Cloud time recording enables them to record their project times while travelling or on site, thus ensuring precise and timely recording.

Furthermore, the software industry is subject to continuous changes. This applies in particular to areas such as time recording, where, among other things, legal regulations (Working Hours Act, Minimum Wage Act, Travel Expenses Act, etc.) must be taken into account. If these regulations change, the software must also be adapted accordingly. In the cloud computing model, these changes can be implemented centrally relatively quickly and made available to all users "at the push of a button" without them having to worry about an update themselves.

The same applies to suggestions for changes and improvements. The suggestion of a Cloud Computing user may thus benefit all users of this solution. The users are therefore actively involved in the practical further development of the application.

ZEP: Because time is money

During the development of ZEP, every effort was made to ensure that the advantages of the cloud computing model are fully realised for the benefit of the user. For example, the cloud solution "Made in Germany" is operated in high-security data centres in Germany, thus guaranteeing the highest level of data security and data protection in accordance with the strict data protection regulations applicable in Germany.

As a web-based solution, ZEP also offers location- and time-independent use of the application via any internet-capable end device (computer, tablet, smartphone) and thus supports companies in project-intensive industries in particular.

All ZEP users are actively involved in the further development of the solution. As soon as the ZEP team receives a suggestion for improvement or a request for a new function, it checks whether and to what extent this suggestion or request is only relevant for the specific customer or perhaps even for all ZEP customers. In the latter case, the function is then made available to all users as part of one of the next software releases. For example, in version 5.6 of ZEP, which was introduced in October 2017, 100 smaller and larger enhancements were integrated into the new release, where the initial impetus often came from customers.

Conclusion: If you are not yet one of the two out of three companies researched by Bitkom that use cloud computing solutions, you should get to grips with the topic of cloud computing as soon as possible - at least in the area of time recording.

Further reasons for using ZEP - besides the advantages of operating in the cloud computing model - can be found on the ZEP website.

Tanja Hartmann CEP

Tanja Hartmann

Content Marketing Manager at ZEP

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