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Baby Steps to Working in the Cloud

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When you work in business, it’s often against your nature to jump in with both feet. Cautious, measuring up the pros and cons. Yes, you go with your instincts but you want all the facts before you make a firm decision.

It’s the same when we are embracing anything new or making a big decision, particularly if it is to do with technology. If it affects income and working culture, we want to make sure it’s right before we commit. It’s all about taking baby steps.

In India there has been significant movement towards the cloud in recent years. Some of the country’s biggest firms are starting to move their information and data across. They recognise the benefits; it’s cheaper and needs a smaller outlay and in the long term it will help with storing even greater amounts of data meaning fewer upgrades and will make it easier to integrate new products.

Yet there is still a caution. And that’s no bad thing. Some businesses in India can see the potential of the Cloud, but they want to try out an element of it first, like Hosted Exchange 2010.

Through pilot projects and testing the water using email and data backup, they are getting the feel of this new technology and seeing how it suits them.

Isn’t this exactly how we all behave in business? You would never welcome in a new client, hand them the keys to the office, share the secrets of your success right at the start of your business relationship. No, you agree, professionally on a deal, you decide what services you are offering, what the contract is and what both sides can expect. Even though you’ve agreed to work together you’re still getting to know each other. Only when you have built a relationship based on trust, understand each other’s demands and requirements can you really start to do great business together.

It’s the same with a new member of the team. You might have interviewed them, handpicked them from a host of candidates, understood they have the exact skill set you need for your business. But you’ll still insist on a probation period.

You never know if the fit is right until you’ve tried it on.

A new technology like the Cloud is exactly the same. If you have any worries or concerns about how it works, but you can see its potential, why would you jump in with both feet? It is much more sensible to test an element of it first, like Hosted Exchange, see how it suits you, analyse what angles you like and what practices you might like to adopt, what you think of your service provider and how their technology might help drive your business forward. That’s probably the right approach.

What’s wrong is those that look at a new technology and just ignore it. The smallest concern and instead of investigating to see whether this is one rogue company or practice, they close their minds to it. Five years later, when all their competitors have taken baby steps to see what they think and modified that new technology to suit them, they’re left behind.

As more and more companies embrace the Cloud it will develop and evolve. Business practice will change, technology will improve and get even better. More will see its potential, will see an opportunity to develop the Cloud and make it even more accessible. Understand how it works and trying it on for size before you sign up.  Much better to be in at the first floor, than try to join the party when it’s already underway.

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