It’s time to take an honest look at the business and business goals of your organization. How does IT drive BUSINESS objectives? Can you honestly say that your IT infrastructure contributes to your company’s bottom line? Or are you still a “cost center?” What you will find is that there are big areas of opportunities to enhance business strategy, free up real dollars in hard savings, and free up soft costs. Although out-of-pocket savings is the current focus of the benefits of the Cloud, it’s the soft costs that may provide the biggest business impact.
Freeing up “facilities”
Moving systems to the Cloud will allow key essential resources to focus on those projects that directly impact the business. Your IT group will better serve the organization as a whole by providing the foundation to grow and expand. So what do I mean by facilities? Think on a broader scale. I am not talking about a couple of racks, I’m talking ALL of your physical facilities. Just think of the benefits of not being tied to a physical space:
- Production and/or Disaster Recovery: you don’t have to house the majority of your hardware onsite. The Cloud can potentially house both primary production AND disaster recovery. Two different locations in the Cloud, nothing in your building.
- Utilities: Electricity, phone, wireless connectivity, every square foot has associated costs, and much of it can be Cloud based. No more need for the long term contracts and responsibilities a company’s physical space carries. Your utilities don’t have to change when your address does.
The goal of the Cloud is to provide efficiencies to the businesses, both from a cost and support prospective. So why wouldn’t you want:
- Quicker turns on IT projects
- Stability across the application base
- More efficient use of skilled resources
Shifting applications and functions only makes sense. Consider Microsoft Office 365 as a starting point. Even if you only use Outlook and not the other applications included – SharePoint, CRM, SkyDrive — consider what you WON’T have to worry about:
- Version control
- Hardware life cycles
- Facility space and costs
And look at the benefits:
- Ease of access regardless of location
- Plays right into Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity plans
- Latest and greatest versioning / functionality
The bottom line is that the Cloud does provide significant benefits to any business. It’s time to take a hard look at how your IT footprint can contribute to your company’s success.