Guest post by Ken O’Hagan, Director Software PreSales UK&I
Sitting here in front of the TV, a question popped into my head - when is it right to move an application to the cloud? What I mean, is how as an IT manager, do you make the decision that a particular service or application would better serve the business delivered from the cloud?
I suppose the key things to think about when considering a move to the cloud are:
1. Security and legislative considerations of data that you are unable to control—You need to know where and how it is stored.
2. Support and maintenance costs—Does the service run on expensive infrastructure? Or does it run on aging infrastructure where the "technical debt" is too high?
3. Line of business application—Does it generate revenue for the business?
4. Intellectual property and competitive advantage—Does it implement specific intellectual property in a method or mechanic that maintains competitive advantage?
5. Necessary skill set—Are you able to maintain the necessary administrative skills in a cost effective manner?
The general belief right now is that applications that support the business (but do not represent any specific competitive advantage or direct benefit to the business) can be considered candidates for the cloud.
Surely it isn't that simple, because we need to consider the points above. We may have an application that is not line of business critical, but it could contain information that is sensitive and so cannot be allowed outside the secure perimeter.
Further, you may have a new application that is implemented on technology that can be supported in-house on existing infrastructure with minimal increment to the IT support function (I know! as if right? ) but why put this out to the cloud if there is no apparent cost benefit to it?
I think the bottom line is that as with any business service and the architecture that it is deployed on, you have to take a holistic view as an IT manager. You need to assess the options available, examine the costs, benefits and risks of each and make the decision appropriate to that application.
Alas this discussion brings me to the conclusion that this is yet another question answered by the favourite IT consultant response - "it depends"...
However, I take comfort in knowing that here at HP, regardless of where you are on that spectrum, we have the right deployment solution. I encourage you to find more information about our Cloud Service Automation options here.
Ken O’Hagan, Director Software PreSales UK&I, has worked at HP since March 2008. Prior to his current job role, Ken worked as Software Principle in the UK&I for over two years. Ken is currently responsible for leading the technical sales cycles, along with Sales Executives, assisting in account strategy, leveraging business and solution selling skills to engage customer IT leadership on organisational and business initiatives.