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Let the Cloud Come to You

Posted by: Today's Tip Contributor on June 22, 2010

Cloud computing—making use of excess server capacity—is often portrayed as an all or nothing gamble that involves offloading your IT resources and your own data to a third party. It’s hardly surprising, given this view of the world, that many chief information officers are fearful of losing the control and integration they have spent years cultivating inside their own IT organizations and question the security capabilities of cloud vendors.

The reality is that the cloud is, or should be, a pragmatic business decision just like any other. If you look at some of the businesses that have embraced the cloud—law firms, insurance companies, financial service organizations—few would describe themselves as early adopters or risk-takers. They have looked at areas of their IT operations where costs are spiraling or complexity is hampering agility and have evaluated the cloud services available to make choices.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution for adopting cloud technology; the conversation varies widely, depending on whether the discussion centers on software, platforms, or infrastructure. The cloud is fundamentally about agility—the agility to scale up seamlessly and to scale down, to adapt to an ever-changing business environment, and to empower IT to be a business enabler rather than just a cost. For most businesses, cloud is not a rip-and-replace project. It is about leveraging existing assets and applying cloud technology to address specific pain points with the aim of saving money and liberating the potential of IT to serve the business where it matters most.

Mary Kay Roberto
Senior Vice-President and General Manager, North America
Waltham, Mass.

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