PWC recently looked at chief financial officers and the opportunities and roles for their profession in the cloud.
And, although the company did mention the risks associated with cloud technology, it also stated that “momentum is building for cloud, and if you are not a user today, you likely will be within a few years.”
PWC recommends that CFOs engage their chief information officers about cloud technology and how it could help their business, either through cost savings or growth. It highlighted five questions CFOs should ask their CIOs.
1. How do the organization’s short- and long-term cloud computing strategies reduce IT and business costs while helping drive new opportunities?
2. How does the cost structure of a full IT department compare with that of public clouds and have you analyzed the two approaches?
3. How is our security group approaching the use of both private and public cloud models?
4. If we have started implementing cloud, what are the detailed plans for migration and implementation? Is internal audit involved?
5. What is the strategy to prevent proliferation of shadow IT among business units? How are we monitoring acquisition of technology?
The report also mentioned that CFOs must vet the viability of cloud providers, which is what Catching Clouds, as your virtual accounting provider, has done. When searching for a cloud host, we looked at cloud providers that didn’t just provide raw storage and generic services. We conducted due diligence on them, reviewing their security assessments, searching out Internet reviews, looking to see if they had ever been hacked and much more.
We also made sure they had easy interfaces so our clients could easily access data from a mobile phone, tablet, PC or Mac.
Catching Clouds also asked if they integrate and add value. Do they extend the platform to make it easier for you to get data and share data with other people in a secure manner? Do they integrate with other programs, like QuickBooks? Can you have a single cloud provider that works with the other products you work with?
Catching Clouds’ approach is to make sure we look at those integrations as well as look at the ability to make a change if needed. We also looked to see if there was a better solution that offered more value, if the provider had more than one data center and where that data ended up.
It’s always a good idea to do your homework, no matter when or if you decide to catch a cloud.