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Crafting a Cloud Business Case Execs Can't Resist

10 November 2016

Cloud Innovation

Written by Origin IT

Despite cloud computing's growth, it's clear many companies still don't know how to drive a cloud project forward....

In some cases, businesses are either picking the wrong benefits or meeting too much opposition internally. But, once you get past those two challenges, cloud resistance evaporates.

By identifying these 10 key drivers, you can use the information to get Business Leaders on board with a cloud migration:-

1. Growth in sales, customers, geography and people

Growth will be an aim for almost all businesses and it’s true to say a business can grow whether its infrastructure is based fully in the cloud or not.  After all, businesses have grown for decades without the cloud, so why can’t this continue?

Growth can mean different things for different organisations including sales, profit, people, geographies, sectors, products and services, and many others.

The difference with the cloud comes when the aim to grow is combined with other benefits such as the ability to scale, be flexible, cost-efficiency and presenting a modern customer experience.

2. Cloud scalability as part of growth

Whatever growth means, using the cloud means your IT infrastructure can grow with you and there is less need to make forecasts about the infrastructure needed in the near or long term.

The flexibility of cloud infrastructure simply takes this pressure away.

Through the cloud a business can grow at its own pace, fast or slow.  There’s no need to invest up front in a server with spare capacity to allow for the predicted growth in months and years to come.  It can also be scaled down as projects end.

With cloud computing it’s all about pay as you go while using delivery models such as SaaS, PaaS and IaaS.

3. Cost efficiencies with cloud IT

Reducing cost may not be high on the agenda if you are growing, but efficiency certainly will be.

Using the cloud is like leasing a car instead of buying.  There’s no upfront investment and risk, and servicing is included along the way.  Buying a server may seem less expensive compared to the total month by month payments over the long term, but you still have to pay for engineers, maintenance and break/fix contracts.

From a CFO’s perspective the cost is also off the balance sheet and therefore doesn’t need to managed and depreciated over time.

4. Role focus from the cloud

In the New Zealand context where businesses are smaller it is often the case that one member of staff who is technically inclined will manage the IT, in addition to other duties.

Using the cloud takes this responsibility away and allows that person to focus on his or her specific responsibilities.

5. Customer experience

Customers now experience the cloud every day on their phones, tablets and home computers.  Children at school are using cloud systems to learn.  The cloud experience is everywhere.

So imagine a customer experiencing an inflexible service from a business with slow and out of date technology that impacts service.  A better customer experience will improve loyalty and brand value.

6. Employee experience and remote working

Gone are the days when teams had to be in one place in order to function and perform well.  While there are benefits of having a corporate heart, companies and their people are now increasingly working wherever it suits them best and remote or mobile working is expected.  We call this the no-HQ approach.

Cloud IT means the experience in the office is as good as it is at home or even in a café.

It used to be that people would come to work for a better IT experience but now that’s reversed.

Your employees now expect a high quality and versatile IT experience nd providing it will build your team culture.  This is what they have at home so why is the office any different?

7. Competitive advantage from the cloud

The efficiency of the cloud, with its ability to swiftly evolve and innovate, produces significant competitive advantage.  Having the ability to change quickly is no longer about keeping up with the corporate Joneses – it’s about ensuring that your IT infrastructure provides your organisation with the best pathway to beat your competition.

8. The amortisation trigger of the cloud

One of the biggest trigger points for a change from server to cloud infrastructure is the amortisation of the existing legacy system investment.  Typically once a business reaches a certain level of amortisation the question will arise about future IT infrastructure investment and it’s at this stage a discussion arises.

Before this, the disadvantage of moving away from something that’s been invested in, is sometimes too much of a bitter pill to swallow.  This is purely a financial reason, related to timing, but very valid.  

9. Business size

You won’t find a start-up buying a server – they need speed to market, flexibility and cost-management.   But it’s not only small entrepreneurial businesses focusing solely on the cloud.  An innovative culture in a large business can also push a change.

10. Generational change and the move to cloud

As younger managers move into senior roles, so will there be a greater shift to the cloud.

More senior managers, business owners and directors, have used legacy systems for decades so may question, why change?  Whereas it will be those with a longer career ahead who are more likely to modernise.

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