How to Select a Cloud Provider

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After an in-depth assessment of both your organizations’ short term needs and longer term goals, the flexibility, scalability, and cost savings available through a Cloud infrastructure provider makes sense for your business. The next step is finding a public cloud provider that can accommodate your regulatory, security, and growth requirements, among other things. For the purpose of this article, we will focus on the top considerations for choosing a cloud provider and the steps suggested are no different than most problem-solving processes.

Decision Analysis

Armed with your company’s needs and objectives, here are a few tips collected from IT Directors to help with your decision analysis:

Commitment

Make sure the provider is fully committed to understanding your business and your specific objectives

They understand your business

The right provider for you will have knowledge of the specific vertical markets your company specializes in. (This might suggest a smaller provider than a behemoth like Amazon)

Useful reporting

Cloud usage reports should be a part of any cloud offering. Understand the metrics that are important to your business and how you would like to have them communicated (self-serve dashboard, monthly report, quarterly meetings?)

Leadership alignment

Another good practice is to have business leadership from your organization meet the business leadership at the cloud provider’s organization. This functions as a double check that objectives are being shared by decision makers, as well as heard by decision makers.

Cost

Be cautious about letting cost drive the decision making process. Commodity cloud providers like Amazon Web Services or Google Cloud Compute will not deliver the same level of service that a managed cloud specialist will. Their costs may look good initially but a cost benefit analysis should be performed that accounts for the cost of care and feeding required to manage and maintain a commodity environment.

Ask about security

Moving to the Cloud is a significant shift for any business and having a thorough understanding of a potential cloud provider’s security posture is critical to choosing the right one. Every business will have different security requirements so reach out to an expert to help you expand and clarify these questions to address your specific business needs.

Get references

Lastly, and most obviously, ask the cloud provider for references and call them.

Ultimately the key to finding the right cloud provider depends as much on the clarity a business has around its own goals and objectives as it is knowing about their future partner. Have a clear understanding of your needs, know your business objectives, and analyze/improve until you can identify a successful solution.

Meet Xigent Solutions

Xigent Solutions specializes in IT services and solutions for mid-market organizations. By partnering with our customers holistically, we engage on both strategic and tactical levels to help them drive greater business outcomes from IT. We do this by helping our clients create and manage Business Efficient IT (BEI) where IT resources – people, process, and technology – are more fully utilized with Xigent’s enterprise based methodology to deliver greater outcomes while minimizing IT cost and inefficiency. Contact us today.

Sources

http://searchcloudcomputing.techtarget.com/definition/cloud-computing

https://blog.rackspace.com/six-considerations-for-choosing-a-cloud-provider

http://searchcloudcomputing.techtarget.com/feature/Top-considerations-for-choosing-acloud-provider