A couple of days ago The Open Group, a key standards body for enterprise architecture, has just published a new book, Cloud Computing for Business, which explores the business case for cloud computing and when to stay away. The book offers a good overview of the definition, benefits and practical use of cloud services.

Being written by The Open Group, it has been audited and reviewed by a wide audience of cloud specialists from IBM and other large IT firms. In my humble opinion a must read for all Cloud Services professionals as it offers a unified language in communication towards cloud clients. The book is free to download for all Open Group members, like IBM.

An interesting review by Forbes of this book summarizes 9 questions from the book to consider, as a client, before jumping into a cloud initiative. These questions offer early insight into how much of ´a fit´ transition to cloud services will be given the current coupling of business processes to technology implementations.

  1. Is Your Business Situation “Vertical”?
  2. Is There Competitive Differentiation in Your Processes?
  3. Is the Differentiation IT Based?
  4. Are There Any Impediments to Outsourcing?
  5. Are There Impediments to Cloud Adoption?
  6. Is the Primary Business Driver “Cloud Compatible”?
  7. Is the Application Insulated from Changes to the Business Process?
  8. Will the Cloud Solution Be a Platform? 
  9. Are the Hardware, Operating System and Application Custom-Made or Specialized?

The Open Group also supports other Cloud centric initiatives like the “Cloud Manifesto” and “Cloud Security Alliance”, all can be found at http://www.opengroup.org/cloudcomputing/

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