Large Corporations Beginning to Embrace Cloud Computing

March 1, 2013

Cloud computing has taken off in recent years as individuals and small businesses have been quick to embrace the new technology, but for the most part, larger corporations have lagged behind. Now that trend is beginning to change, and big business is finding its way to the cloud as well, the Wall Street Journal reports.

For large corporations, cloud technology can have its pros and cons. Cost is generally a plus, as companies appreciate the flexibility of picking and choosing which features to implement. "Cost" can be tricky to compute, though, as companies must also consider additional expenses such as upgrading their purchased technology and paying engineers to maintain their cloud services.

Additionally, renting cloud applications, even for a long period of time, may be cheaper than buying them outright.

Another consideration, especially for big businesses, is security.

"For every application, we look at whether the cloud can be used, and at that moment we look at all aspects, including security," Shell IT architect Johan Krebber said. "When all criteria are met, we will launch on the cloud, and therefore we believe that the cloud is secure enough for a number of scenarios."

While security is an issue for large corporations, executives are taking measures to limit the vulnerability of their networks. For one thing, they can work only with reputable vendors in their industries, and for another, they'll use cloud services only in a single, federated system.

Another problem is the fine print in end user licenses – for those with poorly-worded licenses, minor details could lead to major unforeseen costs, according to Gartner research director Darryl Carlton. But businesses have become more savvy in their deal-making to avoid these pitfalls, and it now appears that the benefits of the cloud outweigh the challenges.

All of the above are reasons for caution, but ultimately the trend continues, and more big businesses get behind the cloud movement each day.