Mid-market organizations have always been familiar with service-based (hosted) offerings. Whether Salesforce, or ERP, Accounting, etc. types of applications, these organizations are used to hosted applications that store data off-site. What this means is that the new push to the cloud, isn’t necessarily so new for all organizations. Many are starting to take advantage of what the cloud has to offer, while other businesses are simply continuing or expanding their cloud deployments. The two things that have changed are the number of solutions available and the understanding of those offerings.
More awareness about the cloud
Although there is more awareness about cloud offerings, not all organizations want to have their data hosted or outside their firewall. In addition, some organizations misinterpret the concept of cloud-based offerings by not understanding the difference between where the data resides and whether it is just hosted or if services are attached. For instance, I have been told by more than one organization that they do not use any cloud offerings, only to find out through more analysis that a number of applications are cloud-based but not hosted as a service – in essence creating a differentiation between the level of control the customer has over the data they use.
With SMBs specifically, this makes a big difference. Many organizations want solutions with lower overall TCO and quicker times to implement, but still want to control their access to data and the overall use of the systems they deploy. Consequently, for these businesses, the cloud represents two levels of use:
- the hosting of and access to data off-site within a cloud environment
- the ability to manage that data or the applications the way the company desires, or alternatively, to be provided access to the data as a service through a hosted offering
Basically, a lot of the hype around cloud adoption and expanded offerings, simply means that SMBs have more choice when identifying the best way to leverage technology and find value through their data assets.
This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business program, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet. Iâ€™ve been compensated to contribute to this program, but the opinions expressed in this post are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies or opinions.
Posted April 24, 2014 6:24 PM
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