Today Forrester Analyst Vanessa Alvarez made a tweet that got me thinking about the state of public cloud marketplace.
Even though I have been hearing the same about SLAs from people I am talking to, this tweet by Vanessa confirms that it is a broader trend in the enterprise IT as they plot their move to cloud computing.
Right now, the public cloud providers take no responsibility for the security or reliability of the service. They are being let to have a free rein with any loss due to outage or security being the responsibility of the users. I thought this will change as more and more enterprises adopt to public clouds. Looks like it is not the case till now. I am a bit surprised at this trend because the biggest enterprise concern towards cloud computing is the lack of control and the associated issues.
Yes, in many cases, SLAs are just papers without any tooth to it. Yes, the compensation offered through SLAs are peanuts compared to the loss incurred by the customers. Yes, public cloud providers cannot offer great SLAs while also offering the services at such low costs. I full understand and appreciate that. However, I cannot fathom the fact that public cloud providers take no responsibility for the loss incurred by the customers in the event of an outage or security breach. When I outsource my IT, I would expect the service provider to take up the same responsibility I would have had while keeping IT in-house. If SLAs are the not the tools to enforce it, then what is the tool that is going to protect the rights of cloud customers?
My views on this topic is evolving and I expect SLAs to become important in the federated cloud ecosystem I am expecting to see in the coming years. I even think that SLAs might turn out to be a differentiating factor in the federated marketplace. The SLAs as we know it today may be just papers worth nothing but I expect an evolution in our thinking on SLAs in the coming years. I would love to hear your opinion (especially, from the enterprise buyers) on this topic.
- Tough Questions To Ask Cloud Service Providers (informationweek.com)
- Amazon EC2 Failures Are a Wakeup Call for Cloud Customers (aujasus.com)
- Choosing the Right Cloud Vendor as an SMB (businessinsider.com)
- Be happy in the cloud with the right SLA (go.theregister.com)
- Amazon SLAs Didn’t Cover Major Outage (informationweek.com)
- Cloud Customers Must Understand Weak Points (informationweek.com)
- Cloud Computing For SMBs: 3 Questions, 3 Requirements (informationweek.com)