“One size fits all” does not apply to Cloud. Many businesses have proceeded with extreme caution moving to the Cloud because it can be intimidating and they are just not quite ready to make that move.

To help these customer take the cloud journey it is important for them to find a cloud service provider that understands their goals and objectives and who will work with their key stakeholders to understand how the cloud will enhance their business. True partners will assess and analyze a company’s needs and recommend the most appropriate cloud strategy for their organization.

Think about these questions when reviewing cloud service providers:

  • Do they have trained subject matter experts assigned to selling and servicing cloud services?
  • Do they give you the right amount of control at your desktop? Can you choose your backup or security solution of choice? Do they give you dedicated compute resources?
  • Do they sound like the experts in their field with tangible proof points or are they just playing buzzword bingo?

The best implementations will begin with no predetermined decisions.

It may start as an optimal phase approach using the customer’s current infrastructure, then gradually moves to a strategy that easily connects them to the cloud. A strong partner will include a comprehensive plan that will minimally address:

  • How their information is secured
  • List of applications and services that make sense to move to the cloud
  • Should they enable a private, public, or a hybrid cloud?
  • Access user policies
  • Location of cloud servers
  • Cost effectiveness for your budget (look at all the elements of costs)

It is also important to make sure your partner has qualified experts that will plan and implement solutions to help you navigate through the complexities of cloud and minimize your risks when building and operating a cloud design. Providers really need to understand how to integrate the optimal cloud environment to facilitate your strategic and technical business requirements and help build a ROI model for today and for the future. Without this knowledge you are just left with “any cloud re-seller” and your cloud opportunity may become just a passing thought.

Your cloud partner should be just that. A partner.