I just finished watching an interview titled Cloud benefits are speed, simplicity and resource leverage on the Enterprise CIO Forum website with Joel Dobbs, Vice President of IT at Eisai Corporation of North America.
In the interview, Mr. Dobbs shares his view of cloud computing and why an organization should consider the cloud.
His main argument is that the cloud can free up IT professionals from the basic operational aspects of IT in order to pursue more ‘strategic goals’ for the organization.
Jump over and watch the interview…there are some good insights there.
After watching the interview, think about what Mr. Dobbs is saying. The reasons given for moving to the cloud are that its simple, fast and a way to leverage resources.
Let’s take a look at these reasons for a few minutes.
Yes…the cloud brings simplicity to infrastructure rollout and maintenance.
Yes…the cloud allows an organization to quickly turn on new systems and rollout new servers.
Yes…the cloud allows an organization to leverage resources.
As an example of this…I can turn on a new server with all the ‘fixins’ (RAM, storage, processors, etc) using Amazon’s EC2 service or RackSpace’s Cloud Servers and have that server running within about 10 minutes. This is something that would be unthinkable a few years ago.
So yes…the cloud is simple, fast and leveraged. Something that used to take hours, days, weeks or months in the past and required a team of Server & Infrastructure professionals can be done in the matter of minutes buy a semi-knowledgeable person like me.
But…one thing that many people tend to overlook is the trade-off that this simplicity, speed and leverage requires. Sometimes that trade-off is something major like the recent Amazon EC2 outage. Sometimes that trade-off is a security risk. Sometimes that trade-off isn’t known until it hits home.
The cloud does provide a simple, fast and leveraged resource that can be used to off-load work from over-worked IT professionals. But…just remember that there are trade-offs. Make sure those trade-offs won’t harm your business…make sure the trade-offs are something you can live with. If you plan to run your business from the cloud, be prepared for that ‘black swan’ event….because it will happen. Amazon’s EC2 system failed and took down a large number of businesses.
So yes…the cloud is simple, fast and leveraged. Those are good things and bad. Make sure you’re prepared for the good, the bad and the ugly…because all three will happen.
Image Credit: simplicity nuke By smemon87 on flickr