Articles under the topic Cloud Computing
When the phenomenon called Cloud made appearance on the IT landscape, it promised to disrupt many existing paradigms. It was touted to be the silver bullet to solve all the budgeting challenges of the CIO including getting rid of the CIO. But as the landscape evolved, so did the confusion and complexity. Today, apart from just private or public, there's a Hybrid - the term that has stuck on. Does it work?
Most successful Cloud implementations are those which have gone through a lot of due diligence and review. Designing the right Cloud architecture, roping in a suitable vendor, aligning policies, processes and procedures and impeccable stakeholder management goes a long way in making Cloud implementation a success. However, avoiding your finance team while deciding on Cloud could be a recipe for failure.
While IT leaders are spearheading their organization's Cloud strategy, there is increasing demand from outside business units for immediate access to the services they depend on. If IT is unable to deliver in a timely manner, the on-demand nature of Cloud services makes it easy for individual users to adopt these solutions without the proper approvals of the IT department. These shadow IT implementations often fly under the radar.
Unless CIOs fully understand the business of their enterprise, the context in which the business operates and the impact of macro-economic and eco-system changes on the business, their value to the enterprise will always be questioned. Till this evolution happens, the CIOs will continue to compete with technology service providers and consultants, instead of strategizing with their peers in the organization.
A lack of understanding, organizational politics, the debate around capex vs opex and conflict of interests are some of the reasons that hamper cloud adoption. My aim is to ignite a healthy debate on the issue. I request IT chiefs to take cloud to the next level in 2013; so that the next time we have coffee together, we talk about "cloud broker architecture" and not "cloud adoption".
Deployment readiness of application services providers is a concern in the journey towards cloud adoption. Cloud providers need to be clear on licensing policies. There is lack of transparency. Billing remains a concern and controls are not standardized. Exit strategy from the cloud is another challenge. In many cases, lack of standards hampers portability of data and applications between systems.
In 2010 an IBM survey, with 1,500 CEOs worldwide, revealed a disconcerting hole that close to 80% of them believed their environment would grow much more complex in the near future, but less than half of them thought their companies were well equipped to deal with this paradigm shift. Now totally out of the hype and well within reach of the users, Cloud Computing is 'help at hand' for those who couldn't catch the bus early in transforming their IT delivery models.
As IT leaders, we must keep in mind that while the solutions are developed and implemented by technical experts, the end users are people with little or no knowledge of technology. So, we must ensure that the solutions are simple to use. At Nova Medical Centers, we have gone in for cloud-based hospital management system which is easy to use and has helped reduce the cost of infrastructure and maintenance.
Some say the cloud will make the CIO role and enterprise IT disappear. But smart CFOs understand that the cloud presents an opportunity to unlock IT value and gain competitive advantage. The best IT departments, the ones that learn the fastest and achieve the most, could turn around and offer the same service to other companies in your vertical, thereby creating a new line of business.
The recent case of a journalist's terrifying experience with cloud computing that caused the death of his digital life raises big questions. Should we not be extra careful while using a public cloud service, especially the data backup service, and should we not back-up the cloud data on a physical device from time to time? More importantly, should we still bet on new technologies ignoring such blistering blows to users?