For many CIOs, the Cloud remains misty territory, with vision impeded by a plethora of new challenges and opportunities, not to mention marketing gimmicks that further confuse the issue. That said, the Cloud’s opportunities may be too great to ignore for many CIOs looking for ways to reshape their IT departments into lean, mean, business-focused machines. In this series of articles and blog posts, I provide CIOs with some overall guidance regarding how to think about Cloud services and some of the important considerations that must be taken before jumping into these services.
For many companies, the Cloud remains an amorphous mystery that is only the stuff of speculation and conversation. For some, however, the Cloud has become the business, as they’ve embraced what the Cloud can do for them.
One company recently turned its entire business model and eliminated their physical product delivery service upside down in favor of a cloud-based electronic service. This company, TrainSignal, provides computer-based training products for IT pros. TrainSignal’s reinvention as a Cloud-based provider of software training is discussed in this blog post.
SMB Focus: IT in-house or to the Cloud
Whether it’s considered a blessing or a curse, CIOs today have a multitude of options at their disposal when it comes to running workloads. With Cloud services mature enough to be considered for mission-critical services, CIOs now have an additional platform to look at when it comes to new service deployment or existing service migration. This adds new answers for CIOs but also raises the question of exactly what should run where. In this article I’ll provide some thoughts on different kinds of applications that might be considered for cloud and why each is or is not a good fit. Unfortunately, the term “Cloud” has come to mean pretty much anything running outside an organization’s boundaries, whether that means simple hosting or a real cloud.
The many options that the CIO has at his disposal are discussed in this article.
The organizational imperative for the Cloud
An organization’s decision to move services into the public cloud will have an impact on the IT department, but the level of impact will vary depending on exactly how the organization chooses to accomplish the transition. The ways in which your staff may be impacted are outlined in this article.
Application Focus on the Cloud
Over the past decade, the issue of whether to run on-premises workloads on physical hardware vs. virtual infrastructure has become pretty easy for organizations to assess, with the majority of new workloads being run inside virtual machines. That said, a good number of applications are still deployed on physical hardware. This article discusses where to run various types of applications.
When an organization decides to plunge into Cloud services to either replace or augment local infrastructure and services, some important internal questions must be answered. Five of these are discussed in this article.
The internal justification is just one side of the cloud story. You also need to ask the service providers questions about their services before you can reasonably sign a service contract. Five important questions are discussed here.
Action Item: "Cloud" is not a destination, but rather a broad spectrum of solutions and operational model that IT organizations must embrace and/or prove to be competitive with. CIOs are cautioned that this is a complex, rapidly changing and greatly nuanced area.