Once you have decided to move your infrastructure on cloud computing, your next step should be selecting a cloud service provider to manage your infrastructure.
When choosing a cloud computing service provider, it necessary that you assess reliability and capability of the service provider so that you can plan to entrust with organizations applications and data.
Here are some pointers that can help you select the best cloud computing service provider for your business:
• The service provider should have a stable and a healthy financial position to operate and maintain your infrastructure successfully over the long term.
• The service provider should have risk management policies in place and a formal process to assess third party vendors.
• Check the cloud service provider’s partners in order to know its reputation. The level of cloud experience and their technical expertise should matchup.
• A cloud computing service should be able to provide you the basic level of service called service level agreements that you are comfortable with. It should have a formal system for event management integrated with its monitoring or management system.
• The service provider should be able to provide you performance reports. You should have sufficient controls to track and monitor services. You should also be able to track any changes made by them in the services such as bandwidth and storage allocation.
• Billing and accounting should be automated, so that you can monitor your resource usage and the costs being incurred against it, so that you don’t receive unexpected bills. There should also a separate team to support your billing issues.
• Speaking of technical capabilities, make sure that the cloud computing service provider has mechanisms that let you deploy, manage and upgrade your software and applications.
• They should use standard Application Program Interface (API’s) and data transforms that lets your organization build connections easily.
• The service providers should have a documented and formal process for requesting, logging and approving and testing and accepting changes in connections.
• The cloud computing services should have a comprehensive security infrastructure and should be able to use all the security protocols on the cloud services.
• Policies and procedures should be in place to ensure integrity of customer data. It should be in place and operational.
• Physical security including access to co-located hardware should be in place. The data centers should have environmental safeguards that can protect both data and equipment from disruptive events. For a business continuity plan, the cloud computing service should have a redundant networking and power recovery system.