The question of "Is the cloud ready for the enterprise?" is now being replaced by "Is my business ready for the cloud?". There is no magic wand that one can wave: every organization needs to undertake a formal and structured assessment of their business needs and IT roadmap. There are new avenues, but new challenges as well. A pragmatic approach, meticulous planning and review will ensure that businesses overcome the initial challenges and leverage this new paradigm that will redefine IT and business process delivery, integration and consumption.
Quadra's Cloud Consulting Group is helping our customers to evolve a successful cloud adoption, migration and co-existence strategy, that will lay the foundation for a responsive and highly agile business environment.
Today's on premise datacenters are stretching their design principles, and the incremental return on customer datacenter investments is diminishing rapidly. Businesses are demanding a highly agile and instantly scalable IT infrastructure.
Couple this with an acute shortage of skilled IT labor, and it is easy to see why cloud computing is gaining increasing acceptance. Complexity associated with IT infrastructure has long stifled business innovation, and this has emerged as the biggest, though hidden cost of traditional on-premise infrastructure.
Examples such as the wildly popular Facebook, and Salesforce.com have shown how the cloud can power a multi-billion dollar business from scratch. Not to be left out, organizations who have been using the traditional IT model have adapted to the cloud. Take a look at how some of the earliest users of cloud services have been adapting to this new model.
- Coca Cola relies on Microsoft's BPOS services for its worldwide messaging and collaboration needs.
- NASDAQ has used Amazon Web Services' S3 to store and deliver historical financial data via a well written rich Internet application – Market Replay.
- SaaS provider Workday has signed a deal with Flextronics for providing human capital management solutions to over 200,000 employees located across the world.
- More than 30,000 Citi Group financial advisors rely on SaaS applications for their day to day customer interactions.
- Harvard Medical School uses Amazon Web Services and Oracle for testing gene models.
- The New York Times used cloud services to generate millions of PDFs in a fraction of the time and without the overheads of expensive on premise infrastructure.
The largest technology companies in the world such as Microsoft, IBM, Google and Amazon investing billions of dollars in football field sized datacenters across the globe to provision and deliver cloud based services. Most of them are betting their businesses on the cloud model, and that is saying a lot, considering that most of these majors have revenues running into several tens of billions of dollars a year.
In addition, there are a number of dedicated cloud vendors, which aim to fill every possible demand from customers. This snowball effect is causing market research analysts such as IDC and Gartner to constantly revise their cloud revenue projections upwards.
While both consumers and businesses will benefit alike from the cloud revolution, the potential is the greatest for enterprise IT users. Just as the Internet turned out to be the greatest leveler of the previous decade, the cloud will democratize IT and put small and emerging players on par with their largest competitors, vendors and suppliers in terms of access to technology and services.
All of this will be delivered in a pay per use, subscription based model that will alleviate the need for massive upfront investments and huge running costs to maintain complex in house infrastructure. Organizations will now be able to deploy an application that can be deployed in a fraction of the time it took earlier, and scaled up or down without any bottlenecks.
As in every aspect of business, there is a cost associated with every benefit. Only a thorough understanding of these factors can help to evolve a successful cloud adoption strategy. Quadra's Cloud Consulting Group, is helping our customers to evolve a successful cloud adoption, migration and co-existence strategy, that will lay the foundation for a responsive and highly agile business environment.