Thinking about getting access to your business data while mobile, but confused about the Cloud. Which service?, which cloud?, do I need to change my business process to match?
One of the challenges that cloud vendors have is that to drive consistency, everyone needs to act the same, but not all business processes are the same. Many businesses struggle to fit into the cloud model without significant change to business process, but customising business processes in cloud platforms is not always straightforward.
Taking a cloud offering and deploying to a business without ensuring that access to existing data and process is catered for is a sure recipe for failure. Sometimes you need to step back and remember again, why you wanted to move in the first place. Perhaps you want better tools without the headache of managing the platforms they run on. Or perhaps you want cheaper tools. Perhaps it is the new UI and replacing old green screen type applications that interests you.
Whatever your reason, here are my top tips for checking that you are ready, have the right motives, and the right team for a successful move to the cloud.
1) Know why you need to move. Determine your top 3 reasons for a move to the cloud and evaluate each option against all 3.
2) Understand that clouds work best and are cheapest when you conform to the common use cases. If you can adapt your business processes then you will get superior tools at cheaper prices than custom ones.
3) Know what other data and systems need to be migrated or integrated for the new tools to work. Your staff will hate the new tool if they cannot get the data they need to do their job. You may need to look at integration right up front. Take a look here for the WDCi integration planning Guide: http://wdcigroup.net/rio_planning_guide.html
4) Know who is helping you. Getting it right can be tricky. Not all clouds are equal. Some are more customisable and support integration easier than others. Make sure you are comfortable that your partner/implementer knows your full requirements and can help you meet them.
5) Understand your exit strategy. In the perpetual licence days if you stopped paying maintenance you were no longer supported, but when you had not had an issue or bug with the system for the last 3 years, that often was not an issue. Stop paying and the service kept running, until you were ready to turn it off. In the cloud you don’t own the tools, and may lose access to data if you stop paying. Make sure you own the data, and that you have a way to extract and use it if you need to move.
There are many benefits to moving into the cloud, but also many pitfalls. If you would like to chat more about what you need then feel free to look us up at WDCi. http://wdcigroup.net/contactus.html