As more IT solutions are externalized, ensuring you choose the best cloud service provider has become important to the long-term success of a business.
But the market is wide, with many providers providing countless cloud services, from small niche players providing bespoke services to market giants such as Google, Amazon, and Microsoft.
How can you choose the right provider with many options available?
A well-defined procurement and selection process is weighted toward your needs. This process may include the following:
Looking at the operating license is important to ascertain that you only connect with genuine and reliable enterprise cloud solution companies. But you may need more than this to get a good cloud service provider. You will also have to go the extra mile and look at the experience level of a service provider.
It is important to keep in mind that experiences often increase over time. This means that a cloud service company, which has been operating in the industry for many years, has more experience and expertise than those established recently.
Besides the cloud service provider, ensure that the staff members working in the company are experienced too. A company’s success depends on the people surrounding and working with you.
Determine the Reliability and Performance
Which applications and data do you intend to migrate to a cloud solution? Does every application require a consistently high performance? And what kind of performance are you expecting from a service provider?
You must define the performance level your applications need to avoid overprovision. For example, mission-critical applications demand minimum latency and high performance.
With this analysis, you can find a perfect balance between budget and performance. Plus, when comparing your needs with the service that different cloud solution providers offer, consider cloud deployment models.
Inquire How Services and Payments Are Administered
Cloud solutions normally use pay-as-you-go models and might be billed annually, monthly, weekly, daily, or even hourly. Not to mention, the cost may vary significantly.
With many cloud solutions, there is an upfront or large cost. So be wary of companies asking for payment before offering services. If possible, ask for a breakdown of costs and the services provided.
Depending on your business’s cloud needs, look for a service company that enables you to delete or add services. Plus, look for a company that keeps overhead costs down and grows with its clients.
Check the Providers’ Trustworthiness
According to some analysts, 90% of IT experts use premises to store their sensitive data instead of the cloud. And other researchers say that unauthorized people can access, corrupt, or steal some of the cloud-hosted data.
In order to ascertain that your data is safe, find a trustworthy partner. Such partners have a firm framework around data sovereignty and security. It is also imperative to look for a provider with proven capability and deep domain expertise to execute.
Consider the Type of Cloud Service
The kind of cloud type should be among the first questions you must ask yourself when choosing a service provider. Most enterprise cloud solution companies provide three main types of cloud. These include hybrid, private, and public.
You may need a public cloud service if you own a big organization. Mostly, big companies need a hybrid and multi-cloud approach. But whichever type of cloud you choose, it may include services like the following:
Don’t Be Locked into Deceptive Contracts
Among the greatest things experts recommend watching out for is a cloud service company rushing you into signing a contract, which you need help to understand or are unsure of. Always find a solution provider who aims at making you understand contracts and set clearer guidelines on everything covered and what isn’t.
Experts have seen this countless times where clients have signed contracts with a company only to know later that they weren’t covered when things go wrong.
Good cloud service providers will ensure you know and understand your contract. Plus, they will never rush you into signing a contract you’re unsure of.
Look at the Customer Support
Irrespective of how great service providers are, issues and problems are inevitable. If something goes out of hand, you should immediately contact a customer support rep for timely assistance.
Technical support and customer service are crucial factors when choosing the right cloud service provider.
While customer support is a must when enlisting the services of a cloud solution provider, the quality of the customer service you get may vary.
A perfect way to determine the quality of customer service is to look at the reviews from previous clients to know the kind of support they got. In addition, look at how responsive a cloud service provider is.
Have a Look at the Standards, Certifications, and Licenses
You must emphasize the certifications and licenses a potential cloud service provider has. This often indicates that the provider complies with all the standards and industry practices. Cloud solutions providers are generally PCI DSS, RDS CAL, or DMTF certified.
A good cloud service provider must also comply with industry certifications. This may include 1SO 27001 as well as other regulations that various governments mandate.
Evaluate the Architecture
Determine whether a potential provider’s chosen technologies and platform can meet and align well with your business’s cloud needs.
The best way to determine this is to look at how architecture can be integrated into your business operations.
Every cloud solution company provides options for retrieving and storing data on an infrequent vs. frequent basis. So ensure you know how much customization or re-coding is needed to make workloads appropriate for the provider’s platform.
Finding the best cloud solution provider is the key to a business’s success and productivity. A wrong partner may mean squandering your money, resources, and time, making you repeat the cycle of looking for another provider. But testing a provider’s legitimacy and asking questions will help make the cloud transition more bearable.