There are some serious bucks going toward the cloud these days. The median enterprise cloud computing budget is $675,000, and the mean enterprise cloud computing budget is more than $8 million for both private and public cloud projects, according to 451 Research. Before opening the IT pocketbook though, CIOs and CFOs should spend ample time determining which cloud is optimal for the applications at hand.
Many companies are looking closely at cloud-based unified communications (UC) solutions today, since they offer numerous benefits, including lower total cost of ownership, scalability, and easier and faster access to new features and applications—which for some small businesses could be a significant competitive differentiator, making them look like bigger companies. Public cloud deployments and managed private cloud projects provide hassle-free upgrades and zero maintenance aside from the desktop IP phones.
Still, requirements are complex compared with other applications, since UC consists of many technologies bundled together. UC also requires a highly reliable infrastructure and high-speed networking to keep messages flowing and video streaming at acceptable rates. Organizations in government, law enforcement, financial services, and healthcare might prefer controlling the systems themselves through a private cloud or on-premises deployment.