As you advance on your digital transformation journey, you may want to adopt a “cloud-first” strategy that considers cloud solutions before any other for new or updated applications. Find out why.
In a digital business, a lot relies on IT. Having a robust, secure and reliable platform to build transformational services upon is essential to discovering new revenues streams and better meeting the needs of customers.

For many organizations, that means moving to the cloud. Cloud infrastructure and software provide robust and reliable platforms and tools that make digital transformation and innovation possible. As a result, you may want to adopt a “cloud-first” strategy that considers cloud solutions before any other for new or updated applications.
While cloud computing’s pay-per-use pricing model has considerable appeal, cost savings should not be the only factor in your decision. Look to cloud platforms for the business agility and reliability they provide. Among the most significant benefits are the following:

No additional fees for data access, egress, ingress or support requests, thereby saving customers thousands of dollars annually.
Most major cloud services have the technology and skills to mitigate outages and slowdowns because downtime can be a disaster for digital business.
Cloud infrastructure capabilities can adapt to processing needs, which, in turn, simplifies IT administration and reduces cost because organizations don’t have to pay for data, information and assets that sit idle during periods of lower demand.
Cloud-based object storage easily accommodates unstructured information like video and image files, making it possible to combine these non-traditional data types with mission-critical data to discover new insights about customers and markets.
Data stored in the cloud is protected against security breaches. As organizations face increasing threats from malware, the cloud aids in minimizing the risk of downtime. IT staff can work on other high-priority work with a back-up, security and data-resiliency plan in place.
Cloud services provide automated tools for managing data based on policies you define. This can greatly simplify data lifecycle management procedures.
Cloud helps organizations to respond to the business continuity best practice which dictates a 3-2-1-0 approach to backup management: three copies of the data, on two different media, one copy offsite and zero recorded failures.
As compelling as these benefits are, moving workloads to the cloud is not always the right decision. Some older applications may be impossible or impractical to move, and regulations may dictate that data remain in your direct control or in certain geographical jurisdictions.

Many organizations choose to adopt a hybrid strategy in which the cloud is part of the equation. For example, they may keep mission-critical data on-site and store backups in the cloud or move only historical data into the cloud for non-time-critical analysis.

Cloud is not an either-or decision. Rather, it’s best seen as an extension of your organization’s IT assets and skills to be used where most appropriate. By building cloud-native applications, customers can then deploy them to any compatible cloud infrastructure as well as inside their own data centers. This gives them the flexibility to shift workloads as needed to meet demands for capacity, response times and proximity to the customer.

As cloud providers increasingly adopt standardized platforms, it’s becoming easier for customers to deploy their digital innovations on whatever platforms provide the greatest value for customers.