All cloud analytics platforms have the same benefits of:
Time and cost savings
Reduced friction and minimal IT management
Broad accessibility and remote access
Those benefits aren’t always enough to make the business case for adopting a platform, though. To truly evaluate their value, you need to look beyond the common benefits and instead evaluate cloud platforms based on the problems they can help you solve.
While the goals of reducing costs, saving time, scaling, and increasing accessibility should still be part of your plan, when it comes to making the final decision on a platform, you want the one that delivers for you and your business for both short-term and long-term plans.
In the remaining sections, we’ll break down how cloud analytic platforms provide value to you and your organization in the form of:
Governance and Compliance
Transparency and Collaboration
Attracting and Retaining Talent
Agility and Resilience
The Business Value of Cloud Analytics
1. Governance and Compliance
Organizations are turning to cloud analytics platforms to simplify the complex process of data and analytics governance.
Cloud analytics platforms can centralize data and analytics workflows and processes in a single location, making them easier to consistently manage and update as regulations change.
This can be useful for you if your organization is currently defining processes and wants to develop version controls for workflows that are easy for data workers to use.
While versioning control is possible through on-prem services, cloud analytics platforms provide a seamless, more streamlined process for implementing changes. (After all, it’s far easier to access a workflow from a centralized catalog than it is to remember the email that contained the updated link or program.)
Since cloud platforms run on browsers, the platforms are developed with robust security measures and compliance controls. These measures include encryption, access controls, and auditing capabilities, which help ensure data is protected, and organizations are compliant while reducing fees.
Of course, not all companies can easily move away from on-premises solutions for data storage. There are often regulations governing the use of personal and sensitive data that require companies to store data on-premises. This roadblock can present problems for people who need to use the data but don’t know where it is stored or the permission and authority to access it.
Cloud analytics platforms can help alleviate these issues by providing a central location where data can be stored, managed, and secured, ensuring all data is handled consistently and compliantly.
2. Transparency and Collaboration
This level of compliance also increases transparency and collaboration, which is currently challenging for on-prem solutions.
It’s not as though on-prem solutions can’t enable this (they can with the right amount of work!), but centralized cloud analytics platforms naturally provide the framework for it.
Cloud analytics platforms encourage data workers to centralize datasets, processes, and outputs. Centralization makes it easier for people to access and analyze data from multiple sources. A hidden benefit of centralization is how easily it can help break down the barriers between different departments or teams and promote greater collaboration and transparency.
With these siloes knocked down and information freely available to those who want to use it, data workers and decision-makers from other departments can access the information they need to inform their business decisions.
By leveraging data and analytics, companies can identify new opportunities for growth and innovation and make more effective decisions about where to allocate resources. These changes can help drive revenue and support top-line growth.
The changes can also reduce the time and resources needed to complete projects, which can help improve productivity and reduce costs, improving bottom-line returns.
3. Attracting and Retaining Talent
The number of people working remotely by the end of 2025 is expected to increase by 87%, and organizations that need help to support this growing workforce will need help to attract and retain top data workers.
Cloud analytics can provide an appealing remedy for that problem.
Since cloud analytics reduce equipment-related costs by removing the need to purchase and maintain expensive hardware on-prem or remotely, you can, in turn, use the savings to focus on attracting and investing in new talent and rewarding high-performing employees.
You can also use cloud platforms to reduce burnout and fatigue—for in-office, hybrid, and remote workers.
Depending on the provider you choose, cloud analytics can provide your teams with the latest features and technology. Sure, on-prem platforms provide updates, too, but they can require time for IT teams to vet or deploy them. When not managed by IT, they require downloads and manual updates—something your employees might not want to do.
The automatic updates from top cloud analytics providers can eliminate the frustration of waiting for software update rollouts, provide your employees with opportunities for growth, and increase engagement by providing a desirable work environment.
4. Agility and Resilience
There are two main reasons cloud analytics platforms enable your organization to remain agile and resilient:
They provide built-in disaster recovery
They can more quickly react to change
While on-prem analytics platforms can connect and export to cloud storage systems, not all do. And the emphasis on ensuring files are backed up properly often lies with the data worker. Furthermore, cloud analytics platforms provide a fail-safe for PC crashes, ultimately reducing costs and risks.
Cloud analytics platforms are also more capable of reacting to change. Or, more accurately, the developers who create new features for cloud platforms can.
Since cloud analytic platforms run from a single-source code on a browser, companies can more quickly implement changes for all users rather than releasing updates one at a time for individual operating systems or delaying releases until all packages are finalized.
The result is a product you and your organization can readily use to analyze data and make decisions—all with the latest features and technology.
But all of this requires that you pick the right cloud analytics platform for your organization. They’re all built differently, so you do have to know what to look for. You can read The Cloud Analytics Platform Buyer’s Guide for more information on comparing platforms and selecting the right one for your needs.
While all cloud analytics platforms are often built on the same ideas of scalability, cost and time savings, accessibility, and more, they’re not all built to deliver on business value.
As you evaluate cloud analytics platforms, look for the ones that meet requirements beyond the basic checkboxes and deliver value based on expected business outcomes.