Microsoft came to the rescue of companies both big and small last week with the release of its Cloud Services Due Diligence Checklist.
While companies have become more aware of the benefits of cloud, fully implementing these services are often still difficult to accomplish. A recent Forrester Study, commissioned by Microsoft, attributed this ongoing struggle to overly complicated cloud agreements in which key considerations important to an organization were often forgotten. In fact, of those businesses surveyed by Forrester, “94 percent said they’d change some element of their cloud agreement.” The primary goal for this checklist is to help avoid any future confusion by helping to “facilitate a common understanding between cloud service providers and cloud service customers.”
With this new checklist, Microsoft hopes to simplify the process of cloud adoption by creating a standard template for the creation of cloud agreements. According to its official overview, the Cloud Services Due Diligence Checklist “offers a unified set of considerations for organizations to help them make decisions about cloud adoption.”
Microsoft has also aligned the checklist with the key components of the recently released Cloud Services Agreement Framework, or ISO/IEC 19086-1, created by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
Produced entirely around the guidelines of ISO/IEC 19086-1, Microsoft has created a checklist it describes as “service-and-provider neutral.” In other words, the checklist is applicable for any type of organization in need of cloud services, regardless of their chosen provider. Microsoft notes that it has condensed the ISO-approved cloud services vetting process down from a whopping “37 pages into a simpler, two-page document that organizations can use to negotiate a cloud service agreement that meets their business objectives.”
By highlighting key topics to review, this new checklist helps guide decision-makers step-by-step through the complicated cloud adoption process. It should also help to answer many frequently asked questions and “increase the efficiency of the decision-making process and ground decisions in sound reasoning, thereby reducing the likelihood of unforeseen roadblocks to adoption.”
This generic approach may help provide MSPs with a clearer path to profitability, to make sure everyone, customers included, is asking the right questions about cloud procurement.