How To Sell Your Colleagues on the Cloud


cloud-computing-conceptWhether you work in IT or marketing, you might have faced some resistance to the idea of cloud computing – maybe from coworkers or your boss. Some organizations are more resistant than others to the cloud transition, whether that means switching your entire contact center operation to the cloud or just buying a new cloud app to automate, manage and streamline your marketing efforts.

Often, but not always, larger and more established companies are the most resistant. If you’re convinced that a cloud solution is the way to go, there are some strategies you can use to get the rest of your team on board. There’s no guarantee that you’ll win them over, but these strategies don’t work, perhaps none will.

Gather The Data

When you’re trying to sell someone on a change – no matter what it is – you need to present them with the facts. Look to data from respected IT analysts like Gartner, Forrester, HfS, IDC, IHS and more on the rise and prevalence of cloud computing. The numbers clearly show that organizations are moving to the cloud en masse.

You can also turn to boutique analyst firms like 451 Research, which released a survey in 2014 showing that 65 percent of enterprises were deploying some form of cloud computing. More than 70 percent of the organizations surveyed said they planned to use cloud for external-facing operations by 2017, and cloud spending among respondents had increased 38 percent from the prior year.

Beyond just general data, however, you should find statistics on cloud adoption in your particular industry. Maybe your colleagues don’t care if other industries are finding success in the cloud – they want to know about competitors. Compile all the data into a clear and compelling report, ideally with visuals.

Address Myths and Fears

Within some organizations, there is still a lot of fear surrounding the cloud. Some are afraid it is not secure, while others fear transitioning to cloud software and applications will eliminate IT jobs. Others are just afraid of change. Don’t ignore these fears; address them. It’s better to have an honest conversation about the pros and cons of cloud computing than to let people make assumptions or buy into myths.

In truth: The cloud is not perfectly secure, but neither are in-house solutions. And in most cases, cloud solutions are just as secure if not better. If they weren’t, cloud vendors wouldn’t survive. If colleagues don’t believe you, present them with research articles on the topic. As for the threat to IT jobs, in most cases transitioning to the cloud simply frees up employee time to address bigger-picture IT issues and strategies, rather than focusing on day-to-day maintenance.

Outline The Benefits

Don’t assume that colleagues fully understand the benefits of cloud computing. Particularly if you work outside of IT, cloud computing may be just a buzz word that they don’t fully grasp. Come up with a complete list of the benefits of transitioning to the cloud, and support those claims with data. Some ideas: 1) Do a cost comparison that breaks down the annual expense of a cloud solution vs. an on-premise solution. Especially if you’re pitching to the boss, the bottom line is hard to ignore; and 2) Explain in detail the flexibility that cloud computing provides, including automatic upgrades, collaboration among remote sites, and the ability to easily switch vendors if desired.

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