Go Away – You’re Not Serious about the Cloud
Quit reading this. Move on. Your business has no chance of cloud prosperity. You’ve chosen to ignore several key tenets of successful integration into the cloud computing sphere, and you now find your business in an IT rut. Should you still continue to be reading this, pat yourself on the back. You’re at least willing to entertain the idea that your cloud acumen could improve. I’ll keep it simple. If you can’t shape up in at least one of these three vital areas to cloud success, you ought to ship out.
Have you embraced service-reverent architecture? Remember that cloud is, at is most elemental, an amalgam of services. Lacking a solid or well-refined strategy that considers how a company may grow into cloud computing can easily create a balloon in unneeded expenditures and services that mimic, rather than compliment, one another. It is worth investigating what Wikipedia describes as service-based architecture: the implementation of a system of services as the bedrock of a business endeavor that can adapt or streamline as needed. Within such architecture, cloud applications are selected based on their capacity to harmonize with the business’ fundamental identity, as well as on how well they synchronize with existent software.
Have you appointed a “cloud mastermind?” Every thriving business operates on some agreement of hierarchy, and this same insistence on leadership should inform a business’ cloud computing aspirations. A well vetted expert should be appointed with the responsibility of determining, for example, the expectations of cloud services, which of those services are purchased, and how the organization will go about bankrolling them. I would go so far as to describe such a professional as a “cloud mastermind.” But the judgment of this figure is not so clouded as to ignore a long-term perspective on cloud within the business. Cloud computing continues to exist cyclically. Healthy businesses regularly grow into and out of services, and any cloud mastermind worth her salt should develop a plan that accounts for a selection of, and a foreshadowing into, cloud-borne resources both today and a year (or two) from now.
Finally, how complex can you stand cloud computing to be? The previously rampant belief in the diametric opposition between public clouds and their private counterparts is now considered an old hat vestige of IT snob appeal. Few tech professionals in today’s landscape will profess an adherence to any one type of cloud, rather opting for a “cloud constellation” that encompasses many a computing system: public, private, hybrid, and independent service providers. A business in pursuit of reaping cloud’s benefits should sow the seeds of a plural cloud mentality at the outset, one that is personalized and adapted to that particular business’ needs. Failure to do so leaves a business susceptible to risks such as vendor/service entrapment, challenges in recalling data on demand, and struggles in scalability calibrated to the ebbs and flows of demand.
By Jeff Norman