It’s official: in 2011 it is now okay to put your "head in the cloud." This advice may be totally against what our teachers taught us since grade school, but trust me, it's for the best. There is a twist however -- I'm not referring to daydreaming. I'm talking about the rising popularity of cloud computing and learning in the cloud!
One of the Six Trends That Will Change Workplace Learning Forever listed in the December 2010 T+D magazine states that, “Accessing learning services via the cloud promises to be simpler, faster, and cheaper for organizations.” It further states all the positives of going into the cloud -- like shorter implementations, automatic upgrades and the responsibility being shifted from the business IT group to the supplier. (Though you need to make sure the supplier is compliant with security, like inContact is SAS 70 as well as PCI compliant, and having data in the cloud fits your business guidelines and policies.) It appears that moving business applications from premise solutions to the cloud is the hip thing to do nowadays.
Carol Rozwell from Gartner states, “There is a clear trend that corporate learning systems (CLS) software as a service (SaaS) deployments will continue to increase in number.” Even companies like Microsoft now have commercials proudly touting the power of the cloud.
This coming year will be a great showing for cloud-based computing. As learning professionals, we too need to look to the cloud to meet the ever-increasing demands of learning. By utilizing the cloud, we will be able to reach more and more people, rapid and collaborative development will become easier and we'll be able to unify business with congruent learning. Doesn’t it feel nice to have our heads in the cloud again?!