When venturing into the brave new world ofcloud computing, small and medium sized businesses should consider working closely with an IT consulting firm during the drafting and revision of any contracts tying them to specific cloud services providers. IT consulting firms can help businesses avoid terms that would work to their disadvantage and can furthermore assist them to better understand the types of items that should be included in such a contract.
1. A thorough description of the services to be rendered
Any contract for services should describe those services in detail. Businesses should know going into a deal to what extent the cloud provider will be able to remove existing features from a cloud application. Contracts that grant providers an unqualified right to add features are just as problematic since such changes may cause unanticipated consequences that can cascade to affect a company's ability to progress through workflow.
2. Data considerations
A solid contract with a cloud provider will also protect the data that a business generates. Just because that data resides in the cloud does not make it subject to the whims of the cloud provider, but the contract should make it clear that data cannot be resold and in fact can only be used in ways that the business has approved in advance.
3. Security considerations
The contract should also specify the various means that will be employed to keep data stored in the cloud safe from both insider threats from the cloud provider itself and from hackers that may attempt intrusions into online resources.
With the help of an IT consulting firm, small businesses will be able to enter a cloud computing agreement with much more confidence in the terms of their contract.