“Why I’ll never buy another piece of business software again.” Those are pretty bold words coming from any seasoned, time-tested, I-grew-up-in-a-server-room CIO or line of business owner. However, I’d propose that with the benefits and maturity of the cloud improving with every tick of my virtual atomic clock, that those are words we’ll be hearing more and more.
The cloud just makes so much sense for so many reasons:
- Important business applications have all moved to the cloud and some of the best new ones are only available in the cloud.
- Flexibility is a “trade-up” for reduced control. Come on IT staffers, the need to control everything is gone. You can have flexibility while still maintaining visibility into the cloud environment. The tools of today (and ever-improving) are so good that you can always see what is going on in high-detail.
- You get resilience without buying a bunch of extra hardware. On prem, you have to buy redundant hardware… just in case. Why not let the cloud provider worry about the redundancy. Something he can do very inexpensively as those costs are spread across tens of thousands of customers.
- Focus on your business, not on building out enormously large IT infrastructures, that cost as much as a small country, and consume tons of power in order to support the really important core business stuff you do. IT staff costs can be substantial, often half of a company’s total technology budget. Get out of the IT business and spend that money on your core.
- The cloud, by definition, means high utilization and balancing of the inevitable peaks and valleys in workloads. You will share infrastructure costs with other organizations’ computing and communications needs. This allows the cloud provider to optimize the hardware needs of its data centers, which equates to lower costs for you.
- Access info from anywhere. With great storage options available in the cloud, location becomes irrelevant. Never again will you have to tell someone, “Once I get back to my office, I’ll get the file and send it to you.” AWS, Dropbox, Box…there is a good number of strong companies allowing you to leverage inexpensive, always-available information storage.
- Security…you actually didn’t think I’d bring this one up did you? Cloud security is still a concern for many IT leaders. And those same leaders should be vigilant at ensuring good security protocol is being followed by the cloud vendors they select. That said, in most cases the security offered by a cloud vendor trumps the security of many businesses running servers in semi-secure locations with poor access guards.
- Always be up to date. How many times in the software world have we heard of new features that exist in “the next version?” In the cloud world, you know you’ve always got the latest and greatest.
The list goes on… protection of capital, lower power consumption, enhanced functionality, faster deployment times… The fact is, the cloud is where the tech sector is headed. The cloud is mainstream. The R&D that vendors will put into cloud solutions vs. prem software will be the proof — and buyers will be the benefactors.
Communications, and certainly the contact center, are no exception to this benefits/cost/reward argument. It’s time to take advantage of the cloud to improve efficiencies and deliver a better customer experience.
Joe Staples – chief cloud advocate