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As a follow up to my #SPSUK sessions, it made sense for me to “postify” (is that a real word?!) my “Why You Should Care About the Cloud” session.

Like all technologies the Cloud is a “different horses for different courses” technology, some of the reasons outlined below will resonate with you and your organisation, some won’t.

I guess for me it’s about trying to help folks understand benefit that they could derive all things being equal.

Like other lists I have put together, it’s a working, organic list – feel free to comment.

1. Flexibility

With traditional IT what’s there is there.  What isn’t there isn’t.  This creates inflexibility which is hard to work around without having gear and systems laying about doing nothing.

2. Scalability

With self-service and metered models you can scale up and scale down as you need to.  You can start where we need to (or can afford to) and end up where you want to.

3. Cost Efficiency

Consuming services from the Cloud means you don’t need to make big upfront investments in hardware, software and (implementation) services.  With fine-grained control over what you consume, on-going costs can be carefully managed.

4. Accessibility

One of the core characteristics of the Cloud (according to NIST) is device/location agnosticism.  Using Cloud services means you (or your customer, partner, supplier) can access systems, content and data from anywhere.

5. Resilience

It’s likely that unless you are one of the top companies in the World, you simply cannot afford or justify the costs associated to building out the kind of infrastructure that would give you in-country, regional or geo-redundancy.  Cloud Service Providers do this as a matter of course.

6. Latest & Greatest

For SaaS, having the latest versions of software available to you without the headaches associated to patch and update management is awesome.

7. Storage

Cloud Service Providers are in a business that is all about economies of scale.  To you, seriously cheap storage is a fringe benefit of this.

8. Being Green

Shared datacentre resources and uber-cool new datacentres mean that the unitised carbon cost of compute and storage is drastically lowered in Cloud scenarios.

9. Choice

Building an on-prem IT strategy around best-of-breed solutions is complex and typically expensive thus making it the playground of large scale Enterprise organisations only.  By consuming Cloud based (point) solutions to meet specific needs (such as CRM, ERP, HR, Finance, Collaboration, etc.) that can be integrated via standards based APIs, even the smallest of business have the freedom to choose world-class solutions.

10. Vendor Support

Most vendors including the majors (like Microsoft, IBM, Oracle) and the ISVs are “all-in” the Cloud.  Some exist or are re-positioning themselves as “only-Cloud”.  This level of support gives a safety net to the customer of un-paralleled strength.

Over the coming few weeks/months I’ll expand on some of these points.

more to follow…