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Enterprises addressing leveraging cloud must look at capability

When cloud computing was first introduced to the private sector, it was seen as an important tool that small and medium-sized businesses could use to deliver cost-effective and flexible IT. As the technology becomes more widely understood, however, it is also being adopted by enterprises in their attempt to gain a competitive advantage and lower costs.

"The cloud services model is shifting from just the delivery of capacity to the delivery of improved business results - or capability," JDA Software senior vice president Joe King said. "This shift is due to the cloud customer's demands for more than just technology to solve business challenges but rather a desire to improve their business results - all delivered via the cloud."

Still, decision-makers should find the right services before jumping headfirst into the cloud. For example, companies need to ensure that the cloud server environment is secure and stable, allowing individuals to access mission-critical applications and data anytime, anywhere.

Businesses also need to make a robust service-level agreement with the vendor that will determine what the provider will offer, according to a Smart Business Network Online report. SLAs should cover topics such as availability, accountability and reliability.

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