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The buzz around the cloud is very real—delivering considerable business agility, greater cost efficiencies and service improvements for IT. What the buzz doesn’t tell you is that getting to the point where the cloud brings these benefits to your organization isn’t easy.

So the real question is…what do you need to keep in mind when integrating cloud computing into an IT strategy?

To help you get started, here are five key considerations when developing a cloud strategy for your company:

  1. Classify your apps to create business requirements: rank how important each apps is to your company and evaluate their requirements.
  1. Assess your fixed assets and data center lifecycle: Do you have the necessary fixed assets you need to leverage in order to get as much value as you can?
  1. Thoroughly define your security needs: Will the data be safe? Will your services be there when needed?
  1. Don’t forget ITSM. It’s easy to assume moving to the cloud alleviates the need for an IT service management strategy—but that’s not true!
  1. Grill your potential cloud provider: Before you entrust a partner with your important data and integral cloud services, make sure they earn the entirety of your confidence.

After you take an accurate inventory of the services you want to move to the cloud, determine what type of cloud environment those services need. You should also assess the capacity of your company’s infrastructure and facility to support such an environment. You can then use these five considerations to develop your custom strategy.

Many organizations find a hybrid approach works best. Leveraging a combination of hosted public and private clouds along with an in-house cloud is often the only way to acquire agility and cost benefits without sacrificing availability and security.

To delve more deeply into these five considerations, be sure to check our free white paper. It’s important to work your way through the process carefully because no two cloud strategies are ever the same!