Welcome!

SDN Journal Authors: Pat Romanski, Dana Gardner, Elizabeth White, David Paquette, Olivier Huynh Van

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Microservices Expo, Agile Computing, Cloud Security, @BigDataExpo, SDN Journal

@CloudExpo: Article

Working in the Cloud and On the Job

When working in the cloud, there are no risks or compromises, only faster, better, and more accessible tools for communication

Professionals who work in the service field often have to juggle several tasks at once. Service techs have to make sales presentations and deal with customer service and still fix the problem they were hired for. They're basically a one-man show that travels from site to site, the ultimate multi-tasker, with so many projects and phone calls to handle that a person can't help but wonder how most even survive each day. But there's something out there to help these guys out with their busy life. By working in the cloud, contractors and techs can gain an extra pair of arms to make each day count.

When your techs show up to a job they bring their toolbox and a bulky laptop. Their hands are extremely full. Everything they need to know is on that computer but it takes minutes to load, and they have to be on the phone at the same time talking to the office. If a problem should arise, they may have to leave the site and only return after obtaining the information or ordering the parts that they need. Then what happens if there are errors in that information? They have to head back again to the office. The tech wastes gas and the client wastes time. No one's a winner here.

With your current setup, your service techs might not have access to immediate information because it's all manual. The situation could be improved with instant access to what is needed: information. With the cloud, your techs would be able to pull out their phones to access job, client, and other information instantly, not to mention replacing that bulky laptop with a slim smartphone that'll fit in any pocket.

When working in the cloud, there are no risks or compromises, only faster, better, and more accessible tools for communication. The smartphone becomes just as important as the wrench in a plumber's toolbox.

It'll Always Be There
What happens now when a loyal long-term client calls for a tech to solve a problem? The job is scheduled for the next day and files have to be sorted through at lightening speeds to obtain the right info. Sometimes a different worker is assigned to a job and hasn't talked to the previous tech. What if the files were lost or thrown away? If your tech is working in the cloud, going back to visit an old job or obtaining a new job from a loyal client isn't a big deal. They can have previous notes and billing statements available on-demand. All they need to do is open the app on their phone to see every note anyone in the company ever made. The same thing goes for a different tech visiting the same job. Every worker has access to a large amount of data that is available at the click of a button. Managers will also be able to see what projects techs are working on. Never again will your techs say "I wasn't the technician on that job", everyone will be able to work together with the same access to information. Best of all, the information is safe, secure, and always within reach.

Even years later the information will still be there, ready to be used when fixing another sink or repairing more ducts. With cloud providers keeping your information safe, wouldn't it be a safer, better idea to be working in the cloud?

When Hammer Meets Nail
The cloud is growing, and using it to manage your business means simplifying a complex and slow process. Managers can see directly what projects are being worked on and can participate in helping those projects move smoothly.

Say for instance, your company receives a service call from a new client. You make a few notes: "Customer says sink is backed up" or "AC unit won't turn on". You then send a truck to visit the client. With the cloud, the tech snaps pictures and enters notes into his mobile device, and you can read everything he does from your own office computer. You instantly notice that it's a different problem and not the one he seems to suspect. You send him an alert, and together devise a new proposal to hand to your client. You're able to instantly accept the proposal and email or print it out to put into your client's hands. You show the client that you're on the top of your game and secure the job. After they accept, you send out invoices and orders for parts needed for the job. Your consultant puts on his tech hat and gets to work. At every step, you and your tech can stay in touch with each other and the client, just in case more problems arise. There are no nasty surprise additions to the estimate because you have access to all of the information needed to fix the problem.

You are able to communicate with your on-site consultant/tech and together you both achieved your goal: to satisfy the customer with fast high-quality service. There's no doubt that the customer will refer you to friends and family, and will probably call you back in the future if some other problem comes up.

More Stories By Jennifer Hutchison

Jennifer Hutchison is a tech blogger currently based in Los Angeles. She has covered a wide range of topics including beauty products, travel, books, technology, and small businesses. Jennifer is a graduate of CSUN, where she majored in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing. She is the Online Marketing Specialist for InfoStreet, makers of SkyDesktop, a free Cloud-based desktop.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Sheng Liang to Keynote at SYS-CON's 19th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1-3, 2016 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, California.
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kausik Sridharabalan, founder and CTO of Pulzze Systems, Inc., will focus on key challenges in building an Internet of Things solution infrastructure. He will shed light on efficient ways of defining interactions within IoT solutions, leading to cost and time reduction. He will also introduce ways to handle data and how one can develop IoT solutions that are lean, flexible and configurable, thus making IoT infrastructure agile and scalable.
Just over a week ago I received a long and loud sustained applause for a presentation I delivered at this year’s Cloud Expo in Santa Clara. I was extremely pleased with the turnout and had some very good conversations with many of the attendees. Over the next few days I had many more meaningful conversations and was not only happy with the results but also learned a few new things. Here is everything I learned in those three days distilled into three short points.
So, you bought into the current machine learning craze and went on to collect millions/billions of records from this promising new data source. Now, what do you do with them? Too often, the abundance of data quickly turns into an abundance of problems. How do you extract that "magic essence" from your data without falling into the common pitfalls? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Natalia Ponomareva, Software Engineer at Google, provided tips on how to be successful in large scale machine learning...
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
The Transparent Cloud-computing Consortium (abbreviation: T-Cloud Consortium) will conduct research activities into changes in the computing model as a result of collaboration between "device" and "cloud" and the creation of new value and markets through organic data processing High speed and high quality networks, and dramatic improvements in computer processing capabilities, have greatly changed the nature of applications and made the storing and processing of data on the network commonplace.
An IoT product’s log files speak volumes about what’s happening with your products in the field, pinpointing current and potential issues, and enabling you to predict failures and save millions of dollars in inventory. But until recently, no one knew how to listen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dan Gettens, Chief Research Officer at OnProcess, will discuss recent research by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and OnProcess Technology, where MIT created a new, breakthrough analytics model f...
Without a clear strategy for cost control and an architecture designed with cloud services in mind, costs and operational performance can quickly get out of control. To avoid multiple architectural redesigns requires extensive thought and planning. Boundary (now part of BMC) launched a new public-facing multi-tenant high resolution monitoring service on Amazon AWS two years ago, facing challenges and learning best practices in the early days of the new service. In his session at 19th Cloud Exp...
Digitization is driving a fundamental change in society that is transforming the way businesses work with their customers, their supply chains and their people. Digital transformation leverages DevOps best practices, such as Agile Parallel Development, Continuous Delivery and Agile Operations to capitalize on opportunities and create competitive differentiation in the application economy. However, information security has been notably absent from the DevOps movement. Speed doesn’t have to negat...
The Internet of Things can drive efficiency for airlines and airports. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Sudip Majumder, senior director of development at Oracle, will discuss the technical details of the connected airline baggage and related social media solutions. These IoT applications will enhance travelers' journey experience and drive efficiency for the airlines and the airports. The session will include a working demo and a technical d...
While DevOps promises a better and tighter integration among an organization’s development and operation teams and transforms an application life cycle into a continual deployment, Chef and Azure together provides a speedy, cost-effective and highly scalable vehicle for realizing the business values of this transformation. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 19th Cloud Expo, Yung Chou, a Technology Evangelist at Microsoft, will present a unique opportunity to witness how Chef and Azure work tog...
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lea...
Almost two-thirds of companies either have or soon will have IoT as the backbone of their business in 2016. However, IoT is far more complex than most firms expected. How can you not get trapped in the pitfalls? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan, a renowned visionary and thought leader, will introduce a holistic method of IoTification, which is the process of IoTifying the existing technology and business models to adopt and leverage IoT. He will drill down to the components in this fra...
Your business relies on your applications and your employees to stay in business. Whether you develop apps or manage business critical apps that help fuel your business, what happens when users experience sluggish performance? You and all technical teams across the organization – application, network, operations, among others, as well as, those outside the organization, like ISPs and third-party providers – are called in to solve the problem.
Digital transformation is too big and important for our future success to not understand the rules that apply to it. The first three rules for winning in this age of hyper-digital transformation are: Advantages in speed, analytics and operational tempos must be captured by implementing an optimized information logistics system (OILS) Real-time operational tempos (IT, people and business processes) must be achieved Businesses that can "analyze data and act and with speed" will dominate those t...
If you had a chance to enter on the ground level of the largest e-commerce market in the world – would you? China is the world’s most populated country with the second largest economy and the world’s fastest growing market. It is estimated that by 2018 the Chinese market will be reaching over $30 billion in gaming revenue alone. Admittedly for a foreign company, doing business in China can be challenging. Often changing laws, administrative regulations and the often inscrutable Chinese Interne...
I'm a lonely sensor. I spend all day telling the world how I'm feeling, but none of the other sensors seem to care. I want to be connected. I want to build relationships with other sensors to be more useful for my human. I want my human to understand that when my friends next door are too hot for a while, I'll soon be flaming. And when all my friends go outside without me, I may be left behind. Don't just log my data; use the relationship graph. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ryan Boyd, Engi...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 19th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world and ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.
Adobe is changing the world though digital experiences. Adobe helps customers develop and deliver high-impact experiences that differentiate brands, build loyalty, and drive revenue across every screen, including smartphones, computers, tablets and TVs. Adobe content solutions are used daily by millions of companies worldwide-from publishers and broadcasters, to enterprises, marketing agencies and household-name brands. Building on its established design leadership, Adobe enables customers not o...
If you’re responsible for an application that depends on the data or functionality of various IoT endpoints – either sensors or devices – your brand reputation depends on the security, reliability, and compliance of its many integrated parts. If your application fails to deliver the expected business results, your customers and partners won't care if that failure stems from the code you developed or from a component that you integrated. What can you do to ensure that the endpoints work as expect...