Let’s start off with the obvious question, “What is the Cloud?” In the simplest terms the cloud is an application, or data, stored remotely. In the truest terms it means you should be able to access your data or application through a web browser or a mobile application.
The main benefits are as follows: first, you save on IT support since the application or data is stored in an environment that is serviced and maintained by the cloud provider. The second is accessibility in the form of getting to it on any device. These two main items have caused the push toward cloud technology.
How to Choose:
First off the core applications on your network should be evaluated, everything from accounting to applications that allow your company to operate. The next thing that should be evaluated is the devices your users currently utilize or would like to utilize. These two factors allow Fuse or your solutions provider to choose the best uniformed environment.
The Hold Up: (Legacy Apps)
Usually the holdup is a legacy application where the software provider does not have a “true” cloud version of their application. This usually requires the hard decision from the business standpoint as to whether or not to change the software to a cloud application. By doing so you would have a learning curve for end users and possibly a change to business process and procedures, or do you continue to run the legacy application as is and utilize a hybrid cloud which part of your technology resides in house and the others in the cloud. Many legacy application providers will run their application on a hosted terminal server where you have to run something like remote desktop to access the application. And while yes, this accommodates your need for remote access, it is not the truest definition of cloud. It’s what we consider at Fuse to be a partial cloud.
The most important thing is that the business decision makers need to be involved with these implementations along with their solutions provider. The provider should be letting them know the pros and cons of each solution and then, collectively, they should pick the best path to take the business to the cloud.
Things that are considered during a successful cloud path:
- User’s wants and needs
- Current applications that are utilized
- How users will share information
- Hardware, such as mobile devices that will be utilized
- Security of data and your cloud
- Cohesive and uniformed cloud utilization, meaning users use the same technologies throughout the environment
- The business controls its data and access to it
- How these technologies will affect process and procedure