For businesses, growth is the most important factor driving their strategies and decisions. Ever since digital disruption has emerged at the forefront due to the pandemic; they have been keen to embrace technology so as to ensure operational continuity and enjoy a competitive edge in the market. Amongst the technologies available, cloud specifically has been gaining prominence and hence receives a special mention.
Gartner in its recent report highlighted this trend and states that cloud will emerge to be a game-changer for businesses in the times to come. It also shares that the global cloud revenue is projected to hit the $474 billion mark by the end of 2022 from $408 billion in 2021. Furthermore, 85% of organizations at the global level will adopt the ‘cloud-first’ approach and 95% of new digital workload will be deployed on cloud-driven platforms by 2025. As per Research and Markets’ study, the Indian cloud infrastructure market is expected to grow from INR 301 billion in 2020 to hit the INR 1169.23 billion mark by 2025. The pandemic along with the surge in digitization are the major factors pushing the growth of the market. Thus, it would be appropriate to say that cloud is gaining popularity and is the future of businesses!
Factors to be kept into consideration while choosing the right cloud platform
Cloud as a new-age solution offers various benefits and this is the primary reason why businesses are inclined towards incorporating it in their operations. It offers agility, flexibility, reduced operational costs along with increased efficiency as well as productivity in a cost-efficacious manner. It also enables seamless remote working by fostering collaboration and ensuring disaster recovery along with data loss prevention.
However, the market is vast, and selecting the appropriate cloud platform can be a challenge. While the decision solely depends on your business, budget, and requirements, we have curated a list of the various factors to be considered before choosing the right provider for your venture-
Types of cloud services
The type of cloud service is the first aspect that needs to be determined when choosing the platform for your business. Public Cloud Platform is shared by other clients of the service provider. It is indeed cost-effective but comes with a considerable risk of data leakage. Private Cloud Platforms, on the other hand, are dedicated entirely to the company and hence provide a high level of security. The Hybrid Cloud Platforms are other feasible options available in the market. As the name suggests, they are a combination of both public and private platforms and offer the best of both worlds. Here, one can store data in the public cloud and reserve highly sensitive data in the private platform. While there are various options, it is advised that you select the one keeping into consideration your available resources and the sensitivity of the data.
Disaster Recovery and Backup Policy
Every cloud platform has a standard backup and recovery policy with a certain level of customization. It helps determine what amount of data can be restored and how effectively you can get back online in case of any disaster. Hence, Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and Recovery Point Objective (RPO) are important values to be considered as they give a fair idea about the frequency of data retention and backup type. It is thus necessary that you ensure these policies of the chosen cloud platform align with your company’s goals.
The cloud infrastructure
While selecting the cloud platform, it is imperative that you check for the provider’s platform and preferred technologies. You also need to ensure that the solution should be in sync with your workplace environment. It is essential that the architecture of the platform is robust and well-suited for your business operations. Furthermore, one also needs to access the kind and the amount of customization needed in the workload in order to make it suitable and relevant for the selected cloud platform.
Data Governance and Information Security
Data management is one of the prerequisites while running a business. It is important that you are aware of the regulatory or data privacy rules governing personal data. Keeping this in mind, the location your data will be stored and the subsequent laws it will be subjected to should be major elements of the selection process. In case you have certain specific requirements and obligations, it is imperative that you look for providers that allow selecting the jurisdiction in which the data will be stored, processed, and managed.
The cloud platform should also have the ability to encrypt data that is in transit so that the privacy of data is not hampered and stays secure. Adding to it, you should have a thorough understanding of the platform’s data loss as well as breach notification processes and ensure that they are aligned with your company’s risk appetite, legal and regulatory operations. You also need to assess the provider’s data and security system levels. Furthermore, its information security controls should be strong and risk-based and it should be capable enough to support your security policies and processes.
One of the main reasons for companies to adopt cloud services is that they bring down operational costs significantly and deliver greater ROI. Hence, you should choose the solution that comes at affordable pricing and fits your bill! However, the market is highly competitive due to the presence of various players. While looking at pricing, you need to check the sticker cost as well as the associated cost and figure out which platform’s pricing is best suited for your company and fits your budget!
Contracts and Service Level Agreements
Contracts and SLAs determine a clear relationship between the cloud service provider and your business. Since a lot of sensitive information is transferred and stored in the cloud; it is critical to have clear and transparent agreements in place for the security of data, especially in light of GDPR policies. Hence, they are key factors to be kept in mind before selecting the cloud platform.
Digitization is at its prime and the trend of cloud adoption is picking up pace. The new-age technology helps businesses transition seamlessly to remote working along with ensuring that your data is secure. Various factors such as budget, disaster recovery, backup, and governance policies should be considered while choosing the appropriate platform for your business. Adding to it, one also needs to keep a tab on the flexibility, scalability, architecture as well as compliance attributes of the solution to ensure it is the right fit for your company! Considering it is one of the booming markets, transitioning to cloud will indeed be a strategic move for your business!
Views expressed above are the author’s own.
END OF ARTICLE