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Day by day, while the hype is fading away a bit, ‘Cloud’ is getting more real. Every day, new Cloud services emerge. Many suppliers of traditional IT-services transform their offerings into services that can be experienced as true Cloud-services: charged on a pay-per-use basis, provided with elastic capacity and configured by means of customer self-service mechanisms. And of course every now and then new Cloud suppliers enter the market with new, sometimes brilliant offerings both in its simplicity and functionality. Like WeTransfer.com, that offers exactly the solution everyone was waiting for: Sending over huge files with a few clicks, getting rid of large e-mail attachments or inconvenient file sharing solutions. The range of Cloud offerings gets more varied every day, making it a phenomenon to stay.
However, to be able to make good use of Cloud solutions, organizations that use this solutions need to adapt to Cloud. End-users should experience their digital workspace as transparent and consistent, whether its parts are based on Cloud (enabled) services or not. It means, for example, that much thought needs to be spent on how to deal with authentication and authorization in regard to Cloud applications. Isn’t it tedious that you have to log on to WebEx with different credentials than you use for your Box-account, at the same time having a third set of credentials to access your Cloud-based timesheet application? Or think about the need for application messages to be adequately transferred between applications that run at various Cloud providers. Or how differences in Cloud service models can be amalgamated towards end-users. Integration is the key word, and it is far from fixed. Even more because standardization in these areas has taken its first steps, if any.
It is those difficulties that seem to hold back organizations. Not only regarding the implementation and integration of Cloud solutions. Even necessary and quite basic changes are postponed, thus hindering the development of the organization itself. At this moment in the development of Cloud, it is better to resolve in a traditional way than doing nothing because no feasible Cloud solution is present yet. To be able to be productive in a 21th century organization, employees do need proper digital workspaces and corresponding applications. So, don’t push your organization to Cloud, “no matter what”. Instead, focus on IT-landscape development with a good portion of Cloud integration architecture. Decide which IT-functionality with which quality your organization needs today and asks for tomorrow. Is it possible to find a solution in the Cloud? Good, use it! Isn’t it there yet? Fine, just build it yourself. At least, start thinking about how a distributed IT-landscape will look like, and how to integrate it. Make sure you get into the position to direct the delivery of Cloud services. The key to this is focusing on functionality and quality required. Because when you know that, it is easier to plan realization. Whether you immerse yourself in Cloud or prefer/need to provide IT in the traditional way a little longer. At least that will keep you moving forward, isn't that what really counts?
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