Integrating Enterprise Architectures with Cloud Computing

Cloud computing solutions can provide easy adoption for most organizations.  Quick implementation and low costs offer simple opportunities to handle business functions that can be done on the web.  Unfortunately, the ease of the solution can often make it just as easy to forget about the technologies behind cloud services.

Essentially the difference between cloud computing and traditional enterprise architecture is how IT components are used.  The components are the same:  programming languages, databases, web services, operating systems, protocols, and APIs.  Ensuring which cloud services can fit with an organization’s systems, applications, and knowledge is a crucial step in choosing the right provider.

Many cloud services are limited in their support of programming languages, database frameworks, even operating systems.  Quick implementation without long term planning can restrict the future improvements to the environment.  A driving force behind IT Service Management initiatives is the interoperability of several business applications to tie in workflow or shared data.  This raises the possibility of multiple cloud solutions from different vendors.  Use standards and similar specifications, like REST or SOAP, in all the solutions, to make integration easier.

Before stepping into the next cloud solution, focus on understanding the long-term aspects of including particular solutions into the already existing enterprise architecture.  Taking this small step in planning will go a long way in ensuring that  your choice is not limiting.