What to Expect When You’re in the Cloud

Shifting to cloud computing naturally leads to a lot of adjustments in a company’s day-to-day operations. We’ve outlined in previous posts how businesses can prepare for a move to the cloud environment, and what are the benefits and costs of the different kinds of cloud platforms. When you’ve successfully transitioned into the cloud, what changes can you expect and should prepare for?

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New roles for IT staff. With an in-house infrastructure, the bulk of the job of your IT department was in maintaining infra, upgrading software and managing daily IT operations. These tasks will be delegated to your service provider if you move to a public cloud. This will provide opportunities for your staff to work on more innovative and development-related projects rather than on purely maintenance tasks. The nature of having a shared infrastructure will also enable different teams to do more collaborative work. This obviously requires significant adjustments in the workflow but, if done well, would yield higher productivity in the long run.

Figuring out resource allocation. The major selling point of the cloud is scalability: customers can adjust computing power and data storage depending on their needs. They would then have to pay only for what they consumed. The challenge for companies then is how to figure out what is the optimum allocation at a given time. Allotting too little will affect operations and performance will suffer; allotting too much will be a waste of valuable resource.

Coming up with metrics for performance. With all the efforts and resources that will go into transitioning to the cloud, there should be a good measure on whether the move is actually beneficial to your company. This goes to show that shifting to the cloud shouldn’t just be a knee-jerk decision. You should have clear, measureable goals which will help determine how you’re going to evaluate the success of your operations in the cloud environment.

Looking closely into cost savings. Reducing expenses is one of the main reasons companies move to cloud computing. Lowering costs, however, involves careful planning and resource utilization. In some instances, companies end up with a lower return on investment after moving to the cloud due to poor planning. Existing hardware and previously purchased software licenses may just go to waste. Shifting to the cloud may result in redundancies in the workforce. Companies should also compare capital expenditure vs. operational expenditure in the decision-making process.

With proper planning and foresight, companies can ensure that their transition to the cloud yields the benefits they expect.

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