5 Steps to Maximize the Results You Receive From Cloud Vendors

You wouldn’t take your car for a tune-up and refuse to let your mechanic change the oil because that would leave your vehicle without the comprehensive service it needs. Likewise, you shouldn’t fail to maximize the services your cloud vendors provide because you would be leaving money and opportunity on the table.

Use these five steps to get the best results from your cloud vendor and to help them deliver the best service to you.

1. Decide Which Cloud Services You Need

Today’s cloud vendors provide a staggering array of services, but not all of them are suitable for your business. When you’re going through your cloud vendors, you need to decide between a single comprehensive package that offers a number of services or an a la carte pricing model so you can hand pick the services you need.

No matter which option you choose, make sure the services will scale as your needs change to accommodate situations like growth or seasonal staffing. A great example of this is Florida-based Orange Business Services. The company uses BMC Cloud Lifecycle Management to quickly onboard new customers because the platform grows with the company and can easily accommodate thousands of VM environments on an as-needed basis.

2. Run Through Your Known Performance Issues With Vendors

Cloud providers can’t do their best for you if they don’t know your pain points. Offering solutions to your problems is what vendors do best, so don’t hesitate to let them know what you need.

“One of the main concerns for enterprises that are considering cloud computing is performance,” explains a TechTarget article about evaluating cloud computing services. “Achieving high-speed delivery of applications in the cloud is a multifaceted challenge that requires a holistic approach and an end-to-end view of the application request-response path.”

If you’re worried about your vendor’s performance or possible performance issues in the future, discuss it with them to see what can be done to reassure you. See if there are any preventative steps you or your vendor can take and if there are resolutions to problems you may be experiencing.

3. Tell Vendors Your Short- and Long-Term Business Strategies

When cloud providers understand the goals that drive your business strategies, they can make product and service recommendations to help you reach them. For example, many businesses are working to find new ways to enable their employees to work remotely. With millennials demanding more flexibility from their employers, business owners have to find new ways for their companies to function through the cloud, explains Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, in an interview.

When commercial trucking manufacturer Navistar wanted to improve the efficiency and uptime of its truck drivers, the company turned to BMC Control-M for Hadoop, to manage its complex business processes. The platform’s automated task features freed up two full-time engineers to work on other projects and saved the engineering department 20 percent of their work time.

4. Drill Down Into Your Specific Business Objectives

Once you’ve addressed your overall strategies, take a deep dive into your organization’s smaller goals and objectives. Weigh the vendor’s capabilities and strengths to determine which services are the best fit for your most important tasks.

China Pacific Insurance realized its system monitoring and management approach was falling short and affecting the company’s ability to meet customer expectations. Using BMC’s analytics-driven performance management system TrueSight Operations Management, the organization increased its efficiency and consolidated its management platforms from six to one. It also reduced the number of IT incidents and mean-time-to-repair by a whopping 50 percent.

5. Ask Tough Security Questions

Data breaches are still on the rise and cloud security is uppermost in the minds of IT professionals across the globe, according to Identity Theft Resource Center. Don’t be afraid to ask your cloud provider tough security questions. A good vendor won’t be afraid to answer.

According to Entrepreneur, some security measures to look for include:

  • Firewalls
  • Antivirus detection
  • Multi-factor user authentication
  • Data encryption
  • Routine security audits

The article also suggests that you should ask who has access to your data in the cloud and whether they conduct employee background checks.

The key to building a lasting relationship with your vendor is to thoroughly assess what your company needs to help your provider maximize the results you receive.