It's Time. Get in the Cloud Now!
"Not now," Kelly, the CIO of PetJoy, told the new programmer analyst sitting next to her at the pet product company’s 25th anniversary party. "The CEO does not want to discuss transitioning our systems to the cloud during a dinner party at the posh Peninsula Club."
"But we're going to have to talk about it some time," Mike, the programmer analyst, insisted. "Our systems integration firm just informed us they'll no longer supply software upgrades or security patches. For heaven's sake, it's past time we got into the cloud as it is. We bought our current software back in early 2000. I was still in kindergarten!"
Kelly was about to shush him again when the CEO, Jennifer, interrupted, having overheard.
"No, wait. I don't mind talking business. That's how we can afford this fancy dinner, after all." She turned to Mike. "I know I've been postponing a move from our legacy software, which has been working just fine. I suspect transitioning to the cloud is going to cost an arm and a leg." She gave Mike a hard look. "Isn't it?"
Mike got a little red in the face. "Yes, it will be expensive, but it will also be worth it."
Jennifer got a suspicious look on her face. "Really?" she asked. "What would make it worthwhile?"
"Here," Mike said, pulling a folded paper from his jacket pocket as the waiters came by with dinner salads. So far, he'd only dreamed of being able to hand it to the CEO, but now he did so in reality. "I made a list of the pros and cons of upgrading our current in-house software versus transitioning to the cloud."
Jennifer looked over Mike's document and tilted her head. "'More secure?'" she queried. "How could having our data out in cyberspace be more secure than having it safe in our own servers?"
Mike nodded. "Yes, it would seem that way, but it turns out cybercrooks can hack you more easily in your office than they can when you're using a server managed by pros. These big data centers have far more robust security infrastructure than you could ever hope to own."
Jennifer pursed her lips. She hadn't thought of the security issue from this point of view.
"We already have some of our software on the cloud," Mike pointed out as the salads were whisked away and a pale soup put in their place. "We’re using G Suite for email, aren’t we?"
"Oh, that’s true," Jennifer said. "So we're already part of the way to being in the cloud?"
"That's right," Mike replied. "In fact, we could transition our various systems to the cloud in phases. For example, we already have our email servers on the cloud. Next, we might decide to store our data there, keeping it safe from getting corrupted by storing it on our on-premise servers."
"That sounds...good," Jennifer admitted. There was also a delicious smell from the fusion teriyaki salmon the waiter had just put on her plate, replacing the soup she'd barely touched. "Do you have another folded paper in your jacket describing how we could phase onto the cloud?"
Mike smiled. "How did you know?"
By the time Jennifer finished reading Mike's plan to phase the company’s systems into the cloud, the main course of the meal had been finished and the waiters were bringing out tiramisu and fruit platters. Jennifer looked up as one sharp-eyed waiter poured her a much-needed cup of coffee.
"I see," she said. "Your plan is a lot like this meal. It starts out small, with the tiny quiche hors d'oeuvres, but keeps building and building until you end up having eaten quite a lot."
"And in the same way that we're going to go home feeling satisfied and happy tonight, the company will end up functioning with optimized efficiency on state-of-the art technology." Mike paused. "So, what do you think?"
But Jennifer had been distracted by the maitre d' handing her the bill for the evening. “Oh, my,” she breathed at her first glance at the total. Then she shook her head. “All the same, it was worth it.
She’d not only enjoyed a delicious meal in celebration of PetJoy’s anniversary, but she’d also received a viable plan for solving the company’s systems dilemma.
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