Cost – There should be virtually no upfront costs and payments should be made on an ongoing monthly basis. This allows costs to be predictable and so budgets can be managed much easier. The cost of cloud should be less than the alternative of staying in house (including hardware, licensing, staff, power, backup, footprint etc.)
Flexibility – Ensure that employees can access their applications and data from anywhere, at any time and by any method required e.g. PC, Mac, smartphone, tablet etc. Licensing should allow this.
Resiliency – Moving to cloud should give you much increased resilience in terms of power, network, hardware etc. Be sure to check the availability figures quoted by the cloud company, remember 99.7% actually means potential downtime of more than 3 working days per year! Also to note your business is much more reliant on its connection to the internet, without this you cannot connect to cloud so maybe worth factoring in a backup line solution.
Scalability – A genuine cloud computing platform allows organisations to provision resources in real time, for example you should be able to scale your computing resources (processor, memory, disk space) both up and down quickly and easily.
Security – You need to be aware of where your data is stored and could be stored. It maybe that your data is not stored in the UK by default or it might be that it is stored in the UK but replication and failovers copy your data to another country. This isn’t necessarily an issue but depending on the country there are different laws for the security of your data and ownership. Ideally your data should never leave the UK.
Data Protection – The cloud solution should not breach Data Protection laws especially given fines of up to £500k are now possible.
Customer Lock-in – Ensure that you can get your data back at any time whether in contract or not and ideally without large penalty payments, an easy exit is essential! Your data should always be owned solely by you!
Cloud53 takes all these points into consideration with our cloud hosted services and would be pleased to discuss these with you