Lack of standards means CIOs must plan cloud projects

The flexibility, cost efficiency and high availability of cloud computing services are making the technology increasingly important for everyday operations in and outside of the workplace. While there are still some challenges in the market, mostly associated with interoperability, security and portability, many of these issues can be resolved with the right planning. In most cases, developing a set of standards for the cloud will alleviate these concerns.

This was highlighted in a recent report by Booz & Company, which found that service providers and business decision-makers need to work together to create industry-wide standards so companies of all sizes can have greater opportunities and fewer issues when using the cloud. In fact, a well-developed standards plan would provide the sector with access to a homogenous environment, strengthening collaboration and leveling the playing field.

A prior study by Booz & Company revealed that there are some 160 different standards associated with leveraging the cloud, many of which are very similar to one another. Because most of these regulations are not fully developed, new complexities and challenges are emerging within the cloud industry as a wider range of organizations use the services.

How to deal with variation
Booz & Company said the next few years will be critical in the development of standards, especially as more organizations adopt the technology to stay competitive. CIOs can make a big difference in this transformation by understanding the current landscape for cloud infrastructure standards and defining their organizations' specific objectives.

Once IT decision-makers understand these concepts, they can find tangible options to ensure their firms' use of the cloud is not impaired by a lack of standards, the report said. Taking this initiative will enable companies to use the cloud in the most effective way without inviting new complexity.

A report by TechTarget highlighted similar steps, noting that executives who understand the risks and plan cloud deployments are more likely to experience success than individuals who do not take the time needed to mitigate potential concerns.

In the coming years, decision-makers and service providers can work together to develop a set of standards that cater to the needs of all organizations, regardless of industry or size. In the meantime, executives need to be proactive with their planning to ensure all cloud projects end in success.

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