INFORMATION INDEPTH NEWSLETTER
Oracle Cloud Services Edition
Oracle Corp
June 2012 Stay Connected: Mix TwitterFacebookYoutube
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Top 5 Questions CIOs Should Ask Before Selecting a Cloud Partner

The potential benefits of cloud computing are enormous, but to realize those benefits—and avoid potential pitfalls—CIOs must choose their cloud partners with great care.

To find out what key questions CIOs should ask as they choose a cloud partner, we turned to Tom Fisher, who is recognized worldwide as an IT thought leader. Before joining Oracle Cloud Services in 2011 as CIO of Commercial IT, Fisher served as CIO of leading cloud software provider SuccessFactors, as well as vice president of IT at Qualcomm. He identified the following as the top 5 questions to ask potential cloud partners.

Question 1: Are you able to act as an extension of my IT organization?
When you're evaluating a cloud partner, it is vital to know whether they can work to your schedule, or if you will have to work to theirs. For example, your partner is about to do a new code release. Do you have to scramble to make sure your organization will not feel any adverse affects? Or can you have control over when to implement the new code yourself?

Fisher notes, “At Oracle Cloud Service we strive to become intimate with your business. We adjust our calendars to yours so we don't interfere with any of your critical business processes."

Question 2: Are you able to understand my business and communicate in a timely and constructive way?
A wide range of people from your organization will be in direct contact with your cloud partner—not just the CIO, but also DBAs and even end users with little technical expertise. So you need a partner that can talk to anyone from your organizations in terms they can understand. "Believe me, a Website with your systems status just won't cut it," says Fisher.

Oracle Cloud Services has been around for more than a decade, bringing unmatched client management experience to customer interactions.

Question 3: Can you provide a flexible solution? Is there lock-in, or can I change my mind going forward?
Maybe you want your organization to go 100-percent cloud. Maybe you want a partner to manage solutions on your premises. Maybe you want a mixture of these—with the possibility to move specific hosted applications in-house quickly; for example, if compliance needs change or if you decided to move from an operational expense basis to a capital expense basis, or vice versa.

Unlike many cloud vendors, Oracle gives you true flexibility to choose any or all the above—then quickly change that mix as your business and operational needs change.

Question 4: How complete is your solution stack? Do you have expertise at every level of that stack?
Every CIO knows you resolve issues much faster when you have access to experts at every layer of the technology stack. The same principle applies to Oracle Cloud Services.

Says Fisher, “As CIO of commercial IT at Oracle Cloud Services, I have access to developers up and down the stack, from virtual machines to business applications. Oracle knows best how to run its own products. And since we process more than three billion transactions every day, we've really pushed the envelope in terms of scalability, performance, and resiliency.”

Question 5: Besides protecting data security, can you proactively demonstrate compliance?
Security used to be a major concern in adopting cloud solutions. But the right provider can bring to bear security resources that many individual organizations could never access on their own.

Besides embassy-grade security and the most advanced data security products, Oracle Cloud Services can proactively demonstrate compliance with standards such as PCI DSS, HIPAA, 21 CFR Part 11, SOC 1, DOD and NIST standards, and more.

Watch Tom Fisher's tour of Oracle's Austin data center.
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