3 Reasons Your Company Still Hasn’t Moved to the Cloud
It’s only natural to reject change in a work environment. Change generally means relearning processes for tasks workers mastered years ago by learning new rules, methods, and practices. Despite the very real benefits of change, those in management can have a very hard time justifying the extra work employees must put in now for rewards that may not be seen until weeks or months later. This is clearly a trend in the cloud-based space . Cloud-hosted enterprise software is evolving faster than ever. For some, the change is welcomed. For others it’s not. So, who or what in the pipeline may create hesitation about adding new tech to your company? Below are three likely areas.
1. IT Decision Makers
Even in the most hierarchical organizations, the ultimate decision to institute new office technology is based on the CIO’s recommendations. If your company’s CIO has been in the industry for years, he and most of the IT team likely have half a dozen certifications and a lot of experience working with legacy systems. Trading up to the cloud may require learning a whole new set of skills. This is why it’s important to look at the bigger picture. Cloud solutions haven been proven to provide long-term cost savings and give employees the flexibility to securely access work data from anywhere. Plus, as a new generation joins the workforce , they’ll want to work with products they’re used to, and those products happen to live in the cloud. So who is getting right? CIOs like Kaplan’s Edward Hanapole  and Dominion Enterprises’ Joe Fuller should serve as role models for CIOs young and old.
2. Legacy Providers
Legacy software companies have been raking in huge profits for their products for decades. These companies milk yearly maintenance fees in which minimal R&D and human capital are invested. And to avoid cannibalizing existing products, legacy companies only push out new technology when a competitor moves in . Take Google Apps  and Microsoft, for example. It took Microsoft five years to release Office 365 , the first viable competitor to Google Apps. Companies have never been more empowered to design and implement agile IT strategies and it’s time to take advantage of all the market has to offer. Today’s IT leaders must demand more robust products from their current providers or seek out alternatives if they hope to embrace and promote change in any meaningful way.
3. Public Perception
Whether Google Apps has experienced an outage or Amazon’s servers are slow to respond, the media has a responsibility to report these events, but those companies also have the responsibility to keep this news in perspective. For example, according to one report, Gmail was available 99.984% of the time for both business and consumer users in 2010. Change is not easy. Certainly, migrations from legacy systems to cloud-hosted platforms are a process. But the outcomes — cost savings, increased efficiency and better collaboration among employees — can be well worth it.
July 31, 2012