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    Implementing Cloud-based Programs Should be a Calculated Process

    As the need for cloud-based programs and infrastructures grows, both the public and private cloud sectors will likely see increased business, according to Vijay Sethi, vice president and CIO of Information Systems. However, as Sethi pointed out in a recent blog for InformationWeek, selecting a cloud computing model is not something IT decision-makers should rush into.

    Sethi highlighted several considerations CIOs should keep in mind during the process, beginning with understanding exactly what services each cloud vendor offers. That includes both immediate functions of the cloud-computing model – initial costs, uptime guarantee and security – as well as the ability to scale up storage space in the future.

    Company and IT leaders should also project the time it will take to achieve a return on investment, which requires an understanding of each cloud environment’s capabilities. A recent blog for Digital Trends outlined the differences among Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) models:

    - SaaS: The “top layer” involves moving specific applications to the cloud and are typically contracted on a monthly or yearly fee.

    - PaaS: With the “middle layer” approach, IT service companies provide organizations with an operating system to develop their own applications.

    - IaaS: In this environment, every aspect of corporate networks is based in the cloud and typically includes a pay-as-you-go contract.