Consuming Cloud Services

The other day, I was reading an interesting article from my local electric cooperative. The article was comparing the process of obtaining fuel from a gas station as to paying for electricity. As the article developed, it caused me to consider the similarities between electricity and cloud services. Let me elaborate…

Cloud, much like electricity is both confusing and mysterious.   Both are present and real, because we can understand the results of their respective performance. However, we cannot physically or tangibly verify either’s presence.   Secondly, both are very different from purchasing other tangible commodities such as fuel. How does one – “fill up the tank” with either electricity or cloud?

Consider fuel – when you obtain gasoline for your vehicle, you are purchasing fuel for future use. Clearly, one cannot drive somewhere on an empty tank, and then purchase fuel for the distance traveled. In contrast, electricity is based on a model of consumption. In the case of electricity, customers receive a monthly bill based on the amount of electricity they consumed for a given period of time. What about cloud?

Cloud services may be based on consumption, predictability, or a combination of both. In the consumption model, customers are invoiced for the amount of data consumed, and resources allocated. However, unlike gasoline or electricity, there is no meter installed which provides an indicator of the amount of consumption. Occasionally, customers are unaware of their consumption, and therefore are un-prepared for an invoice that is inconsistent with their perception.

I believe that a great alternative is a hybrid cloud provided by a hosting partner which incorporates public and private clouds into one affordable package. This hybrid cloud package provides consumption usage (such as Microsoft Azure), and predictable pricing for hosting services of ERP and other supporting applications. The value of this solution is managed consumption. The hosting partner essentially monitors the consumption of data, and adjusts the service plan according to the demand. The customer has the ability to decrease and increase their user count throughout the term of agreement. This in conjunction with fixed monthly user access hosting costs, provides predictability. There are cost savings opportunities as there is no additional hardware to purchase, and value added services of performance monitoring of your cloud environment. Organizations are able to more accurately budget their IT expenses, without sacrificing performance or services.

Socius Cloud Services already provides the solution of managed consumption in our cloud. We help our clients “fill up the tank” in terms of getting the best value for cloud.   We do this by helping to manage Microsoft Azure instances more efficiently, and provide hosting services for ERP and other applications for a monthly predictable per-user cost. Socius Cloud Services show you how to focus on what the cloud does – not what it is. Let us leverage our 30 years of ERP experience, and more than 8 years of cloud practice to become your Trusted Advisor for all things cloud.

Discover the best way for your organization to consume cloud services with an Instant Deployment Recommendation here.


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