The Upfront Is All-Important - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Cloud
Commentary
5/12/2010
01:41 PM
John Soat
John Soat
Commentary
50%
50%

The Upfront Is All-Important

When it comes to a cloud computing engagement, whether it's software-as-a-service (SaaS), infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), or platform-as-a-service (PaaS), the upfront is all-important. That's because there are so many variables to be accounted for during the length of the engagement, as well as at the back end, that a detailed accounting of what to expect from your service provider and your rights in the relationship is mandatory.

When it comes to a cloud computing engagement, whether it's software-as-a-service (SaaS), infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), or platform-as-a-service (PaaS), the upfront is all-important. That's because there are so many variables to be accounted for during the length of the engagement, as well as at the back end, that a detailed accounting of what to expect from your service provider and your rights in the relationship is mandatory.

Here are just a few variables that need to be addressed up front:

The first variable has to do with performance. Factors such as uptime, transaction time, and failover recovery time should be spelled out. And there should be economic consequences for deviations. A service level agreement (SLA) can address some of those issues.

The second variable has to do with your data, specifically, where it will reside and how easy it will be for you to access it. In terms of where your data resides, different countries have different laws regarding data privacy, so it's important to know what you're getting into if your vendor parks your data offshore. As for access, federal mandates concerning e-discovery make getting at your data (all your data) and locking it down an imperative if you're involved in litigation.

The third variable has to do with what happens when the engagement ends. For instance, what if the service provider goes belly up or you have a falling out? What if you decide to go with another service provider for the same service (which is a very real possibility given increasing competitive pressure)? How easy will it be to transfer your data and business processes?

These are just a few very high-level variables that need to be made explicit before you enter into a cloud computing engagement. Your negotiations should be specific to your situation. Don't worry about pushing your cloud partner too hard on the details. After all, it's just business.When it comes to a cloud computing engagement, whether it's software-as-a-service (SaaS), infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), or platform-as-a-service (PaaS), the upfront is all-important. That's because there are so many variables to be accounted for during the length of the engagement, as well as at the back end, that a detailed accounting of what to expect from your service provider and your rights in the relationship is mandatory.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
News
IBM Puts Red Hat OpenShift to Work on Sports Data at US Open
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  8/30/2019
Slideshows
IT Careers: 10 Places to Look for Great Developers
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  9/4/2019
Commentary
Cloud 2.0: A New Era for Public Cloud
Crystal Bedell, Technology Writer,  9/1/2019
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
Video
Current Issue
Data Science and AI in the Fast Lane
This IT Trend Report will help you gain insight into how quickly and dramatically data science is influencing how enterprises are managed and where they will derive business success. Read the report today!
Slideshows
Flash Poll