The power of choice in cloud means greater agililty, efficiency

By Guy Currier, Director, Global Cloud Solutions Marketing, Dell

The first day of Cloud World Forum just finished, and I find myself reflecting on the critical importance of choice.

Cloud is a model for IT use that, in essence, speeds up the productive deployment of IT resources—not just speed to value, but speed to respond to business needs. Because the needs that benefit most from speedy response are those arising from changes in the business or market environment, choice is essential. Your approach to cloud today cannot constrain your ability to make decisions tomorrow.

But the value that a number of vendors exhibiting and speaking at the show bring to their customers actually comes from limiting choice. This, actually, is completely understandable: as a vendor, the most straightforward way to engineer value is to control the whole environment. You build a beautiful palace, and then you can show customers the many facets of its beauty.

“There is great and growing demand from cloud adopters … to be able to use the low deployment barriers of the cloud model to full advantage by using multiple clouds for a given application.” – GUY CURRIER

But in meeting customers’ needs, this is a stumble, because customers seek beautiful results, not just beautiful structures. The growing cloud management space—Dell is a lead player here, by the way, with Dell Cloud Manager —should put pause to the closed-system mentality. There is great and growing demand from cloud adopters, especially those who are developer- and innovation-focused, to be able to use the low deployment barriers of the cloud model to full advantage by using multiple clouds for a given application. They, and we as an industry, need to be able to use the best available environment, off premises or on, at any one time for any purpose … at least eventually. So all these new management technologies that enable diversity and platform agnosticism are a tonic to the more traditional, palace-building approach.

At Dell, we don’t want to build so many palaces. As a colleague of mine likes to put it, we like to show you model homes.

We have architectures and solutions for the three leading cloud platforms, as well as a managed cloud services offering that works with a kaleidoscope of cloud providers globally as well as our private cloud portfolio to ensure in as simple a way as possible that you can use the right cloud in the right place. These are the model homes we display for you, in the sense that you understand what it will be like to “live in” them—but that also comprehend that your wants and needs are special to you, and that you will adapt and customize the actual home you buy.

Then, you are happier and more satisfied, or in business terms, you are more agile, productive, and efficient. This is the power of choice. It’s why Dell is so committed to open architectures while also partnering strongly with industry standard-bearers. And it’s what you’ll see in every corner of our cloud portfolio, on display at the  Cloud World Forum or anywhere else you encounter us.

Where is your organization in the cloud adoption journey? What choices are you weighing in this process? Send your comments to me on Twitter @GuyCresearchIT.

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