While cloud continues its march to mainstream adoption, we continue to hear that IT and the CIOs aren’t on the front lines pushing the shift. Line of business leadership are often the ones beating the cloud drum because they need technology and with cloud, they don’t necessarily need much IT help to get it.
CIO magazine ran a good story where Forrester Analyst, James Staten, describes a recent study that showed how most business IT leaders tend to see cloud services as inferior to their own internal deployments. While enterprises that have the most direct experience with cloud services report that clouds deliver superior security, performance, scalability, and cost efficiency better than traditional IT, a lack of communication between business and IT inhibit success with cloud.
Mr. Staten makes a few recommendations for CIOs looking to better leverage cloud. They are:
- Gain Hands-On Experience with the Cloud Today — Don’t let your team members pontificate about the shortfalls of the cloud if they don’t have direct experience.
- Don’t Hide Behind the Shields of Compliance or Security – There are also lots of applications in your company that do not deal with regulated data or processes, start your cloud experiments with these applications.
- Don’t Reject Cloud on Economic Grounds because Business Agility Might Matter More — Forrester surveys show that the top reason enterprises leverage cloud services is for greater agility.
- Build Your Own Cloud — Learn from those who have built private clouds, and consider starting with a solution built as a cloud that can be deployed in-house.
- Don’t Be Fooled By Cloudwashing & Be Careful Not to Do It — To be a cloud service it must be a standardized service delivered in the same way to every customer. If a vendor asks, “What kind of cloud can we build specifically for you?” — run!
His last point is especially telling. This is the way the entrenched software companies are “cloudifying” their software offerings which misses one of cloud’s key value dimensions. You don’t need to build a custom version of AT&T to run your business, just use the phone better than the next guy and focus on your business.