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The 'cloud' isn't what you think it is

Ben Farrell
February 20, 2014

"Cloud solutions" is an ambiguous term in business, and many firms find that their investments fall short because of lack of knowledge and thorough exploration of the options presented to them when deploying cloud services. This is because there is more than one type of "cloud," and selecting the right tools is critical for integration and success.

According to Forbes, the biggest issue presented to firms invest in cloud solutions is knowing what they need from these tools. Some companies may want to deploy cloud infrastructure, while others are focused on Software-as-a-Service or data management strategies. Selecting the right solutions is critical for getting the value a company expects from its strategy and maintaining quality of operations at the same time.

"Cloud services provide several exciting benefits [such as] costs shift with my needsÖwe force disciplined lifecycle managementÖwe now have an IT staff with the cycles to be part of the bigger pictureÖable to respond and adapt with agility," said Cynthia Stoddard, CIO of NetApp.

The key is to know what the end goals of a cloud deployment are and meeting it with the right business process management solutions to ensure those efforts are successful. A cloud BPM strategy allows companies to optimize their approach to cloud computing, regardless of what their intentions are, and integrate these tools with work processes.

Rather than rushing into cloud architectures, firms that invest in the right BPM software to ease their way into these deployments will be able to optimize their infrastructure and ensure each service is interconnected in the way they need. Otherwise, a company can end up with several disconnected cloud solutions that don't communicate or allow for easy transfer of work or data.

In order to ensure success with the cloud, businesses need to consider two primary factors - their initial shift into the cloud and what the focus of their IT services is. IT teams have to broker all technology related resources, both internal and external, Krishna Subramanian, VP of Citrix, told the news source. This will allow firms to move towards an overall goal of IT-as-a-Service, migrating entire workflows to cloud infrastructure and optimizing the integration of data, processes and employees.

With cloud investments comes a responsibility to align workflow with the technology at hand. Companies that take the best approach and integrate business process management strategies with their efforts will be able to ensure success.

Ben Farrell

Director of Corporate Communications

Ben Farrell