Janko Štefančič (2010) Can small and medium-sized businesses effectively put the cloud to use?. EngD thesis.
Outsourcing and application service provider (ASP) were the two biggest trends in information technology at the beginning of the millennium. They represent the first steps and building blocks of internet-based computing, which is better known as cloud computing since the term was coined in 2006. Its main goal is providing computing capacity on-demand, reducing costs of IT and as a result enabling faster and easier adoption of information technology in small and medium businesses. The purpose of the thesis is to explain the concept of cloud computing, explore key processes and information technology requirements of small and medium businesses and furthermore compare investments in on-site IT with cloud computing. Cloud computing is the main focus of the introductory chapter focusing on searching for a solid definition, defining the different types and exploring its key strengths and weaknesses. The second chapter is on presenting challenges faced by companies that are automating business processes with IT and the key processes they should start with. In the central part of the thesis the current state of cloud computing services in Slovenia and the rest of the world is researched. The goal is to determine whether a universal provider of services for small and medium business already exists. In the next chapter the selected services are evaluated and compared between on-site IT and cloud computing model. Findings of the evaluation are presented in the conclusion with predictions of cloud computing development in the future.
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