When it comes time to pick the right enterprise-class cloud computing solution, it cannot simply be the call of one side of business. The IT department and business side of the organization will likely each be using the cloud in some capacity, so technology professional Nick Hardiman wrote on TechRepublic that companies must come together for due diligence of vetting different providers to figure out what will work best for the enterprise as a whole.
It is important, he said, to look at the range of components that are part of each solution to figure out what will be the best fit and provide the most advantages. Looking at the application programming interface for developers, what kind of service-level agreement the provider is willing to give, and any other perks of signing up with an enterprise cloud company should all be weighed to see how it will positively benefit either side of the business.
"Technical people working in IT love peering inside the machine and figuring out how it works. If they hear about disk I/O problems, they have a hard look at performance," Hardiman wrote. "They do complex experiments to figure out if the enterprise organization's complicated apps perform on these remote virtual machines."
On the other side, business leaders and administrators don't feel they should carry out technical evaluations, so that should be left for the IT department. Each side should be given a role for how they feel a provider should have. Customer service, including the quality of the company help desk and what the SLA promises, should be looked at to figure out which provider may be able to give an organization more help if it ever runs into a snag.
The technical side cannot be ignored either, as checking to see how much internet speed is needed, what the providers uptime and downtime numbers are, and what resources are available is essential for the company to feel as comfortable as possible with a specific solution.
"In reality, organizations considering cloud providers should get input from decision makers across the enterprise," Hardiman said. "Technical experts inside the IT department (or hired consultants) should evaluate the actual technology and make sure it will perform as required."
Road to cloud may primarily be driven through business
While the use of cloud services is growing faster on the IT side of things, a recent Gartner survey found that business may be the bigger driver of the industry going forward. Eighty percent of organizations said they plan on using the enterprise cloud in some form over the next year, including 55 percent of companies not doing so today. Gregor Petri, research director at Gartner, said it will have a "considerable impact" on the future of business, as 60 percent of organizations said they will be increasing cloud investment over the next two to five years.
Key factors for why the enterprise cloud will see growth include addressing tactical business problems, more value in cloud services by the business side, and the ability to have a more diverse portfolio of implementations and migrations.