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On Cloud Computing

Cloud Computing is to the internet, what a hard disk is to a computer. Cloud Computing simplifies data storage, whereby instead of data stored on a local server, a remote server network on the net is used to manage, store and process a large amount of data.  This practice is a huge boon in recent times, given the exponential rise of data that is passed back and forth over the net and the increased mobility that makes local data storage increasingly redundant.

 

  • Morgan Stanley predicts Microsoft cloud products will be 30% of revenue by 2018. 
  • In 2015, Amazon Web Services (AWS) generated $7.88B in revenue with Q4 2015, up 69% over last year.
  • Worldwide spending on public cloud services will grow at a 19.4% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from nearly $70B in 2015 to more than $141B in 2019.

Let us consider a scenario, in which as a company executive, one of your responsibilities includes, equipping each and every employee with the right software and hardware to do their jobs. In this case, buying computers for them may not suffice, since what is also required is giving them the right software for each computer, and which in turn will require valid licenses to be issued. Consider doing this for each and every system present in the company individually, and you can understand what a back breaking task it will be.

Cloud Computing simplifies this entire process very easily. It helps load a single application on the system, allowing workers to log onto a single internet provider, hosting all the programs needed by the employees. Remote access when considered in this example makes things so much more easier, and a possibility that only cloud computing can afford, whether for simple emails or even complex data analytics programs.           

All of us have probably used Cloud Computing in some form or the other; the most common one being email accounts using a web based email service such as Gmail or Yahoo.  Given its nature and scope, Cloud Computing is only set to grow and become more complex in the coming years.  The maturity of a new technology or functional model is almost always recognized by the different certifications related to that product or service that keep appearing. In this regard, Cloud Computing certification is of great significance.

 

Almost all major vendors today, including Microsoft, Amazon and Google are offering certification training for their own Cloud Computing products, whereas third party vendors such as CompTIA certifications are industry neutral credentials.

Given the way such certifications are flooding the market, the question does arise as to whether these are really relevant, or just part of the hype which will die down eventually.

Can mid-level management take a basic cloud computing course or sales and customer service personnel take a Cloud 101 course, and will these certifications benefit them and the company in the long run?  While the answer to the FORMER is NO, to the LATTER is a resounding YES!

Cloud Computing has enormous potential to transform businesses, organizations and even individuals. Business leaders in the days ahead, will understand its significant potential and the kind of impact such a service-oriented cloud computing infrastructure will have on their organization. The potential of cloud computing in integration and interoperability, the kind of mobility it provides, and in its practical execution within the ICT environment will make it a game changer for organizations in the years ahead.  A Cloud Computing certificate is not all about the test. These certifications are designed in such a way so as to leave an individual equipped with the basics of it, no matter which industry they come from.

Like most technology driven topics, cloud computing has different branches, including operations, technical and business utility. Therefore, the underlying technologies are easy to understand, and skills can be developed over time, with experience and operation.

What is perhaps a bigger challenge is understanding the impact of cloud computing on an organization and its business, both internally as well as on a global perspective. In fact it is a given, that any business-related discussion involving cloud computing cannot do without discussion on areas of service-oriented architectures, enterprise architectures, big data, interoperability, disaster management and operational continuity.

Both the basic, as well as high level understanding of Cloud Computing is important, and will ensure that businesses take informed and structured decisions on data center consolidation, and other aspects of current technologies. While news and self-study may help in understanding the basics, taking an introductory cloud computing course will help in leveraging the knowledge gained to add value at all levels of an organization, from the technical level to senior management.