Cloud Computing: Eight Questions to Ask Before Moving to the Cloud

By - July 30, 2013

The changing face of IT – When is the Cloud right for you

In today’s fast paced and information driven economy, a business’s ability to efficiently leverage the power of technology plays a critical role in developing and maintaining competitive advantages.  In many organizations, IT investments and functions focus primarily on IT infrastructure and not on capturing information and value that IT investments have the potential to deliver.

Cloud computing is fast becoming a mainstay as a means of delivering data to an increasingly information hungry economy.   The demands for ready access to data, collaboration, and mobility have increased dramatically.  This demand has created and pushed business centric innovations, and cloud computing offers industry leading technologies, thru an a-la-cart menu of services.

As businesses face the complex and ongoing task of aligning IT with business strategy, reducing costs, maximizing output, and streamlining operations, it’s essential to consider how cloud computing may aid in achieving those goals.  As discussed in Robert Plant’s “To Cloud, or Not to Cloud,” from the Wall Street Journal, when considering where cloud computing fits, there’re questions that should be explored:

1)      Do you know the outcome you’re looking to achieve?

2)      Are application usage patterns predictable?

3)      Does your business require a global presence for applications?

4)      Do you have applications that require access to services that exist inside secure networks?

5)      Are data regulations and security hurdles too high?

6)      How much capacity will be required?

7)      Do applications require specific hardware or speed of delivery?

8)      Does the cost benefit justify the disruption?

After maneuvering thru the “fit assessment” of cloud computing it’s likely that there’re services available that will help your business reach its goals.  At this point, it becomes critical to consider how to engage cloud service providers and how best to ensure the business’s best interests are the priority.  Finding external resources and information such as Joe McKendrick’s “9 Questions to Ask Before Signing a Cloud Computing Contract,” can be invaluable in understanding how to protect your companies best interests.

Cloud computing offers exciting opportunities, allowing businesses to expand their reach, and improving the experience for employees and customers.  Increasing the options and opportunities for internal and external touch points drives growth, increases productivity, and creates a more seamless information experience.

RSM has implemented and partnered with industry leading cloud computing providers, we’d welcome the opportunity to assist with your evaluation of needs and cloud computing.  For more information on this or other ways to increase IT efficiency, contact McGladrey’s technology consulting professionals at 800.274.3978 or email us. In addition, please check out our services offerings on our website.

By: Jake DeWoskin, Infrastructure Services Practice Manager

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