Cloud is a smart way to go for most companies, at least in a number of their everyday office procedures.
It’s generally cheaper than buying per-desktop licenses for proprietary on-premises software.
You can leverage brilliant economies of scale offered by jumping on some standard internet-delivered software, if your needs are generic.
And yet, some promises of Cloud Computing are not 100% true yet. The famous ‘sneaker net’ example shows that (until 2040 at least) it is far cheaper and quicker to send a Terabyte of data via Fedex.
The CFO loves adopting the cloud, because it shifts CAPEX to OPEX (bespoke software is a Capital Expense, while Software as a Service [SaaS] from the cloud is a much more appealing Operating Expense).
Your CTO probably loves the idea as well, because it means there is less work for her to do, fewer staff to wrangle, there are less opportunities for [in-house] failures. And if there is a failure, then it’s the vendor’s fault, not hers.
There are almost no upfront costs in adopting cloud services, and there’s no time delay. Cloud services are, by definition, on-demand.
Since networks have become ubiquitous enough, and fast enough, adopting Cloud Computing just makes a lot of sense financially, technically, and enables your company to implement new systems immediately.
You can now buy Applications (SaaS), Platform (PaaS – Platform as a Service), and Infrastructure (IaaS – yep, you guessed it, Infrastructure as a Service) from a number of Cloud vendors.
In some cases, it’s becoming inevitable… Photoshop is definitely moving towards ONLY offering their software as a Cloud-based service.
The reasons are often simply ROI.
If you sell software as a transaction, then you get a single glob of money.
And then you have to mess about putting out fires when your users share their licenses.
Far simpler to enter into a “subscription model” and have an ongoing relationship (little drip feeds of money, as long as you deliver quality software, services, updates, and extras) with loyal customers.