Cloud Computing best practice: Use your Cloud SLA to get what you really need Posted on June 6, 2013 by Tim Burke Do not — I say again, do not give your Cloud service-level agreement (SLA) short shrift. Your Cloud SLA is how you make sure you get what you want and pay only for what you get. It’s not uncommon, however, to find yourself with an assortment of Cloud SLAs — one for each service your business subscribes to. Happily, the right Cloud SLA will enable you to bundle all your Cloud services into a single monthly OpEx payment. This not only shifts significant amounts of your IT costs from your capital budget into your operating budget and relieves you of constant IT asset upgrade and maintenance costs, it also makes it far easier to manage your services and ensure that you’ve established — and continue to achieve — appropriate service levels. You may be tempted to simply sign off on the SLA that many Cloud service providers shove in front of you — because often those providers’ SLAs are proffered on a take-it-or-leave-it basis. Tempted though you may be, read the fine print, asking all the way… Am I getting the security I need? Will I see the performance I need? Am I going to end up paying for resources I’ll probably never use? How many of these Cloud SLAs am I juggling — and what kind of service gaps are they leaving me to cope with? The right Cloud services provider will not only customize its Cloud services to fit your IT needs — they’ll also customize your SLA. That means various services SLAs can be bundled to eliminate gaps and save you from paying for what you’ll never use. Next time: When it comes to Cloud services, what should you monitor?