As students and administrators seek anytime, anywhere access to the cloud, higher ed IT teams must face their fears and get to work.
While the public cloud or, at least, hybrid model is the most likely endpoint for many colleges, a realistic look at the industry today reveals that we have further to go before we achieve it. It is not uncommon today to find small startups fully committed to cloud computing for all service requirements. Large organizations like universities, on the other hand, have been cautious, even if they recognize the values cloud computing can bring. For them, the logical starting point is a private cloud.
Reluctance comes as no surprise to anyone who has followed the adoption path of emerging technologies over the past few years. Legacy applications, infrastructural investment, regulatory concerns and rigid business processes represent tremendous obstacles to change.
That doesn’t mean that enterprises are completely stationary. In their own way, most of them began the journey to a private cloud years ago. We can break down the path by identifying three steps, each associated with an increasing level of efficiency.
At this point, the majority of colleges are still working on the first step, but many have at least started analysis, and some pilot programs are tackling the second. It will take some time before the third step sees widespread adoption, but it, too, is inevitable.
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