“As its technologies and processes mature, the cloud is being increasingly relied on as a vehicle for agile, scalable and elastic solutions. To build competitive advantage and cut costs, CIOs and other IT leaders need to constantly adapt their strategies to leverage cloud capabilities.” So says Gartner in its Predicts 2016: Cloud Computing to Drive Digital Business report.

The Cloud terminology has become ingrained in business vocabulary and represents what many businesses see as the next evolution of IT: the ability to source the required IT resources – be it computing resources, storage capacity, network connectivity, mobile application or secured services. However, despite the acceptance of cloud, public or private or hybrid, as an acceptable strategy that delivers on the promise of utility-like services the use of public cloud to host critical business applications at scale remains limited, much to the puzzlement of cloud service providers.

Henk ten Bos, chief information officer at Ageas Insurance Company (Asia) Limited in Hong Kong, feels the cloud has changed IT’s view of technology and implementations over the course of the last five years. He shares some of his earlier experiences, including attempts to integrate cloud-like services in upcoming projects. These recollections include objections raised by members of the IT team with regard to the use of cloud for a CRM project. Eventually, a successful pilot of a cloud project led to less objection and more appreciation of the cloud’s value to both IT and the business.

These days ten Bos and his team view the cloud as a viable platform for projects where it makes sense. He says any IT project where cloud is an option to be considered will follow the same scrutiny that is applied to other IT projects including business case, controls and security among others. Today cloud is a serious option the IT team at Ageas would consider as part of current and future projects.

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