The cloud can be good for nearly all IT scenarios. But that doesn't mean you should go all in without some careful consideration. "I do not recommend a public cloud for sensitive non-public data. Furthermore, I would not recommend it for systems that need to be highly available (never disconnected)," says James Shira.
Here's the bottom line: Over-reliance on the cloud could turn a simple network outage into a total disaster. Larry Collins, Vice President of E-Solutions and Risk Engineering at Zurich Services Corporation, agrees. "Don't become so dependent on an outside provider that you can't leave them if you have to. The marriage may be expensive, but the divorce could be even more so." So how can you make the cloud work for your business?
By now we've all heard that the cloud can be a tremendous help to your organization. However, you must remember that it may be only part of the answer. It's important to truly look at all aspects of business operations, identify where improvements are needed, and decide--ultimately--where you want to take your business.
All smart business leaders will acknowledge that the cloud isn't necessarily the be-all and end-all for businesses. It can be a critical component of a business's larger system, but you must first evaluate your current infrastructure and identify all areas in need of improvement. "One must start with the end in mind and have a very specific strategy for the cloud that fits into the overall IT strategic vision," adds Shira.
What the cloud isn't or is good for does not have a simple answer. What it comes down to is this: You must stay informed and current on what is taking place in your business and in the larger technology landscape. When it comes to the cloud, making informed decisions leads to great success.
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