Last week, GraVoc Associates sponsored a “Lunch & Leads” session as part of a monthly event series organized by the Peabody Area Chamber of Commerce. Hosted by Burton’s Grill in Peabody, the lunch served as a meet-and-greet for Chamber of Commerce members. Each attendee is invited to briefly introduce themselves and their business in order to establish connections and encourage the growth of businesses within the community. GraVoc was well represented with employees from multiple practices in attendance.

GraVoc President and CEO Dave Gravel served as the event’s guest speaker and addressed the growing buzz around cloud computing. Gravel stressed that the cloud is not a complicated concept, and explained that most people have been using some form of cloud computing for years in the form of web mail applications, online shopping, and social networking. He elaborated that cloud computing refers to applications and data being hosted somewhere other than an in-house server or infrastructure.   Gravel went on to weigh the benefits and drawbacks of cloud computing and concluded that the unique needs of individuals and businesses are a major factor in the decision of whether or not to rely on cloud technology.

Gravel’s speech comes shortly after Microsoft announced plans to offer its Microsoft Dynamics ERP solutions in the cloud, having already seen success with a cloud version of Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Microsoft cites shorter deployment time, high service availability, and “pay as you use” licensing models as some of the benefits for businesses utilizing ERP solutions on the cloud platform. Gravel warns the buyer to beware when considering possibilities for cloud computing, stating that information in the cloud is only as secure as the provider chooses to make it, but also notes that secure options are available. Ultimately, it comes back to the diligence of the consumer in determining the best solution for his or her needs. A video of Gravel’s presentation will be available soon.

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