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Prioritise cloud computing shift for greater Kenyan economic growth

BDDatacenter(2)

The continued adoption of advanced cloud services presents businesses across various sectors with a new era of innovation and growth by catalysing digitisation. PHOTO | SHUTTERSTOCK

The continued adoption of advanced cloud services presents businesses across various sectors with a new era of innovation and growth by catalysing digitisation. According to a report by Amazon Web Services (AWS) 26 percent of local organisations in Kenya adopted cloud computing in 2021.

The report further projects that cloud adoption in Kenya is poised to generate a Sh1.4 trillion economic boost within the 10-year period to 2033, representing 0.6 percent of the country’s cumulative gross domestic product (GDP).

This goes to show that as Kenya advances further into the digital age, the role of advanced cloud services in the business ecosystem will continue to expand, fostering economic growth.

One of the most tangible benefits of advanced cloud services is the efficiency it brings to business operations. Traditional on-premises infrastructure often comes with significant capital and operational expenditures. In contrast, the cloud allows businesses to access a wide array of resources and tools on a pay-as-you-go basis. This means that even small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can access world-class computing power, storage, and software without the prohibitive upfront costs.

This efficiency is a game-changer for businesses in Kenya, where MSMEs constitute 98 percent of all businesses, create 30 percent of jobs annually and contribute 3 percent to the GDP.

The cloud levels the playing field, enabling smaller companies to compete effectively with larger counterparts, thereby fostering economic growth and job creation.

Cloud services also help strengthen the foundations of business operations and more so build resilience and continuity in times of unprecedented challenges. The Covid-19 pandemic underscored the importance of business continuity and the ability to adapt swiftly.

Cloud services proved to be a lifeline for many businesses during this period. Businesses that adopted cloud computing solutions were able to transition to remote work, ensure data security, and maintain critical operations from virtually anywhere.

Additionally, the scalability of cloud services is a game-changer. Companies can easily adjust their computing and storage resources to meet fluctuating demands. For Kenyan businesses, this entails the capacity to quickly expand during peak seasons and contract during slower periods, optimising resource use and minimising waste.

At the same time, cloud services offer powerful tools for data collection, storage, analysis, and robust cyber security features ensuring that sensitive business data remains protected and compliant with regulatory requirements.

Cloud services, therefore, serve as a beacon of hope for Kenya's digital transformation, unlocking potential for innovation, global expansion, and economic growth.

The writer is a cybersecurity consultant.