CFO Crunch: Your CIO wants Enterprise Cloud, and You Should Care

Succeeding in today’s business environment is all about closing gaps…

Gaps between business and IT…

Gaps between compute output and power input…

Gaps between the CIO and CFO…

Gaps between the CEO and everyone…

Success is about incentives and objectives. This post focuses on the gap between the CIO interested in expanding capacity, and the CFO interested in tightening budgets.

The premise: If CFOs are all about margins, they should care about Enterprise Cloud…because when Enterprise Cloud is built on a software-defined data center, data becomes available up and down the stack.Enterprise Cloud—done right—is a Numbers Game

The equation goes like this:

Software Defined Data Center + Open Architecture IT  =  Cloud that enterprises can trust and afford (what IO calls Enterprise Cloud) + Actionable Intelligence

What do you mean by “actionable intelligence?”

We’ve talked in the past about the difference between numbers and intelligence (see CIO Insights: Analytics as a Strategic Advantage by Patrick Flynn). The true work of data science is to know what numbers to mine, how to crunch them, and which outcomes matter.

Data is raw, while intelligence is knowing how to improve resiliency, uptime and energy efficiency.

The fact is, intelligence that is both reliable and valid (not a stats nerd? click here) requires standard, mass-produced hardware (reliable) that is existentially converged with software (valid). IO has over 1.5 million operating hours logged for our software-defined data center platform, and we are actively applying our insights to digital infrastructure.


This endeavor has major implications for the CFO: When the data center is transformed into a strategic asset, Enterprise Cloud—with all of its bottom line benefits —becomes a viable option for risk-averse organizations.

• Enterprise Cloud reduces premiums by eliminating technology lock-in (which we addressed in CIO Insights: 5 Things You Need to Know About the Open Enterprise Cloud.)

• Enterprise Cloud minimizes unpredicted expenses related to logical, physical or custodial issues (as I addressed in the Cloud Security: 7 Dealbreakers for the Enterprise CSO.)

• Enterprise Cloud speeds time-to-revenue by providing right-sized capacity just when you need it.

• When Enterprise Cloud is properly deployed, CapEx and OpEx are reduced.

The Enterprise Cloud in Practice

There are a number of common use cases for Enterprise Cloud, including application development and testing, data archiving, temporary processing and storage needs, and disaster recovery/ business continuity. Obviously, these are all driven by business need, which in turn drives IT decision-making. Traditionally, the next step has involved a tug-o-war between the CIO and the CFO. Such in-fighting is simply untenable in today’s non-stop business environment.

There is a bridge…a translator…that aligns the goals of finance and IT. That translator is the Intelligence of Enterprise Cloud.