Making Cloud SLAs readily usable in the EU private sector
SLA-Ready workshop in Madrid, Spain; Takeaways 1
15th November was the day that SLA-Ready co-hosted a workshop with CONETIC to help Spanish SMEs gain a deep understanding of Cloud Service Level Agreements through a practical hands-on approach.
1. Business Benefits of Cloud Computing in today's Digital Economy
Cloud services give access to sophisticated computing resources without requiring SMEs to make up-front investments, thus lowering the entry barrier to almost any sector. As more and more businesses become digital, cloud computing will be a fundamental part of the business process.
In his opening talk, Jorge Pérez, Director of Digital Economy, Red.es. Ministry of Industry, Energy and Tourism, highlighted the benefits of cloud services for SMEs, offering insights on the future directions of the Spanish digital economy based on three pillars: transformation, education and innovation.
2. SLA-Ready Benefits for Cloud Service Providers
The SLA-Ready Common Reference Model is a tool to help service providers implement Cloud SLA best practices to make their contracts more understandable and attractive to the large SME market. Ruben Trapero (TU Darmstadt) explained the SLA-Ready approach to defining the Reference Model and how providers can measure their readiness in terms of SME requirements.
The value of the SLA-Ready Reference Model was reflected by the participation of global service providers, such as Microsoft and a service provider from Chile, thanks to CONETIC's connections with the country.
3. Role of National Trade Associations in supporting cloud service uptake
Project partner Janneke Breeuwsma (Arthur’s Legal) highlighted the benefits of SMEs coming together through NTA support to clarify their needs and increase negotiation power with providers. This approach could also be used across different market sectors to negotiate on their sector-specific requirements, and mapping them against relevant services.
4. Need for greater transparency in Cloud SLAs
The workshop played a crucial role in underscoring greater transparency in Cloud SLAs to unleash the innovation potential of SMEs as the backbone of the European economy. Cloud service providers looking to capture this large market should therefore make Cloud SLA transparency their unique selling point.
Lack of knowledge and clarity in cloud service contracts are two major roadblocks for SMEs and critical for building trust in the cloud.
To help increase SME adoption, SLA-Ready offers free tools like the Common Reference Model offering a common understanding of SLAs and the SLA-AID tool helping SMEs make informed decisions about which service to use and what to expect.
Held in Madrid at the International Business School of Francisco de Vitoria University, this was the third workshop of our European tour: the first one was held in Madrid on the 19th October in collaboration with CloudForward, and the second one in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, held on 3rd November in collaboration with Cluj IT.