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Recently many organizations have been looking to get out of the business of owning and maintaining their own information technology infrastructure. But for organizations new to the cloud, figuring out how to get started is a critical issue. Here are four considerations when evaluating cloud computing:
1. Business Assessment. Cloud computing will not replace everything in an internal computing environment. A good starting point is to determine which applications have the best business and technical case to move to the cloud.
2. Security. Just as in the early days of managed services when providers needed to prove to customers they could completely address security aspects, cloud providers need to demonstrate multiple layers of data protection for security and application availability.
3. Compliance. Compliance standards cut horizontally—like Sarbanes-Oxley—and also vertically with industry-specific standards. A service provider needs to show that its cloud environment and processes address both areas.
4. Services and Service Level Agreements. While many mainstream cloud providers offer an unmanaged, do-it-yourself cloud, some organizations may prefer managed services, backed by a service level agreement. Each company needs to evaluate its specific, managed services needs and consider service when evaluating vendors.
Vice-President, Product Management, Managed Services
SunGard Availability Services
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