Cloud computing is having a field day. Around 90 percent of the companies in North America use cloud services in one form or another, predominantly private cloud solutions – or a privately-hosted cloud. Of those, nearly half have had a two-year run with the trending technology.
RightScale’s 2015 State of the Cloud report indicates that 88 percent of companies are using public cloud services, while two thirds are using a private cloud. 58 percent use both, and more than 80 percent have a hybrid adoption strategy set in place. It’s clear that one cloud doesn’t fit all, which is why it’s important to outline some basic facts about successful cloud deployments.
Don’t look at capital expenditures when considering this upgrade. Operating expenditures are a far more relevant metric. The difference between buying a server and leasing server time may seem unfavorable to the company doing the buying, but not when you have provisioning as a priority, or supporting transactional applications. Other things to look for here: achieve economies of scale (doing more with fewer people), reduce spending on infrastructure, improved accessibility (anytime, anywhere), less software licensing. In a nutshell, the Cloud needs to be viewed as a way to achieve operational efficiency – not the-same-thing-only-cheaper.
Cloud is also also synonymous with higher customer satisfaction and fewer security hassles. Yes, you read that right. Jump over to the next point.
It’s a proven fact that cloud providers – specifically, those with a reputation – are capable of delivering better security than most companies can afford with in-house equipment and expertise. Things to look for in a cloud provider: Saas and IaaS with encryption, privately-hosted options and access control.
If you’re not selling locally, having an IT infrastructure located thousands of miles away may not be such a bad thing in terms of agility, latency and resiliency.
A smart cloud user will build deployment strategies based on existing workflows, not the other way around. This way, sales people will continue to work their magic uninterrupted, while developers and analysts get faster, more-efficient applications as their much deserved upgrade. People use different tools in different ways, depending on the job description. It’s the manager’s job to see these things and mold the cloud investment around it.
This one deals with a lot of factors, including convenience but also peace of mind. It’s security in a management sense. Basically, if your data is highly-sensitive, then by all means keep it in house. But know that hybrid is an option – keep data-centric processes in-house, outsource the rest of your cloud needs. If your data is variable, but you prefer to be cautious, the same rule applies. The main advantage? Hybrid opens more choices in the way you manage your cloud environment.