In the post, “So What Exactly Is ‘The Cloud’ and How Does It Help My Company?,” Tracey Schelmetic delves into the many different names and forms of Cloud computing.
There’s software-as-a-service (SaaS), platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS). Tracey’s sums it up nicely,
The important take-away from this lesson is that when you go through “the cloud,” you are receiving applications – IT and communications functionality like customer relationship management software, e-mail management, enterprise resource management, inventory applications and even telephone service, to name a few examples – as services that are delivered over the Internet, not as a box of software that you must physically install on a computer that resides in your IT room.
Enterprises have unique business challenges that require various approaches to delivering IT services. As a result, there is no such thing as a standard, one-size-fits-all model for the Cloud. This is where the Cloud can take on many different meanings and forms to meet each company’s distinctive set of IT requirements.
The bottom line is, enterprises are seeking ways to become more service-centric and to respond to challenges and opportunities at a much faster rate.
CIO.com continues on this thread this with their article, How Cloud Computing Promotes Business Growth. In the article, Stephanie Overby covers several recent example of companies leverage Cloud services to accelerate their business.
Talking with the CIO of Lojas Renner, Brazil’s second-largest department store chain, Stephanie explains how Cloud services have revolutionized how the company launches new initiates. Stephanie writes,
In the past, if Balbinot needed to double the capacity of his core systems, it could take 90 days. Now, it takes a week. New projects get up and running faster, too. It takes four to five days to make a production copy, compared to 45 pre-cloud.
Speed to market often means speed to deployment and Lojas Renner and others have found a way to deliver. Moving to a Cloud service delivery approach was not a trivial step but the gains are not only real but are possible now.
Whether you plan to invest in the necessary internal resources or look externally to a Cloud service provider, IT must help lead the charge in these efforts by building a strategy today. The speed of the Cloud can be a real enabler for the business but much better to be the one capturing these gains than witnessing a competitor get there first.
Image Credit: gustaffo89