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Deciding on a Cloud Computing Technology Strategy

The cloud in cloud computing, like every other computing platform, has to be managed. And like any other technology strategy, a cloud strategy is considered in relationship to your IT organization’s and your company's overall strategies.

You must make a complex evaluation of costs, benefits, business cultural issues, risks, and corporate and government standards before developing a comprehensive cloud strategy. Although very few organizations have tested cloud services in these heavy usage situations, a well-planned cloud service strategy has the potential to significantly reduce costs.

Over time, however, as more and better commercial cloud services become available, companies increasingly will be able to rely on these services not just for IT cost savings, but also for delivering new value to the organization. The trend toward well-managed cloud services is especially important because of the increased automation across the organization. This may include the software embedded in everything from manufacturing systems to radio frequency identification tags that track inventory.

Cloud services can help organizations in steps. With utility computing, any customer can plug in an application or component because all the interfaces have been standardized between implementations. For companies to successfully use the cloud, management must decide what types of services they will begin deploying from the cloud.

One organization may decide that a Software as a Service (SaaS) approach is best, whereas another wants incremental capacity on demand. Before planning a usage strategy, consider what cloud services might be right for you. Most organizations adopt a hybrid strategy, combining internal managed services with cloud-based services.

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