The Cloud Paradigm — Renting Vs Owning

It is a dream of middle class people in USA to own a house by investing their hard-earned money so that they can get shelter and value for their money by the time they retire to relax (hopefully !!). The point here is how much it is true that all home owners are thinking the same thing (except those who already paid off their bank loan or bought it by paying cash). Are they happy? If they were given a second chance would they buy a house or rent an apartment?


It is the same dilemma with IT infrastructure for a company. All companies want to have their own IT department and own infrastructure. They spend money to build, manage and hire professionals to take care of them 24/7.  I know that is obvious for many companies. But what if your company has a problem dealing with your enterprise content management. For some companies it would be more appealing to spend money on product development instead of spending on IT infrastructure and management. There you go.. That means they need to rent instead of owning IT.

I know it is simple to say that right? Let’s stop there for a minute and list all the questions one will ask when looking for an apartment/office to rent.

  1. Why should I go and live in an apartment? (either you have a house that is on short sale list or you don’t own a home)
  2. Which city I am going to live? (Most probably either closer to your office or if you have kids you choose a city where schools are rated high).
  3. How many bedrooms and bathrooms I need? (figure it out, if you are married you will have kids.. plan , plan..)
  4. Do I need a special parking lot? (Unless you have a serious problem with parking in randomly available parking lot… better prepare to pay more )
  5. Do I have to sign a lease? (yes of course, but you may get some options..)
  6. Do I need a furnished home, so that I can just come in start living my life and do my work? (By the way, that includes internet , just to make your life easy!)
  7. How much it cost per month? (Well I think it should be listed as a first item, but thought that would drive your other options, so kept it in the last so that you decide how much money you can afford to spend on home rent)
  8. What about the community? Is it Safe and secure? How the building is protected? (Good questions, you should ask)

Well, that is not too bad isn’t it? I think this is a typical list of questions any body would ask who rent an apartment, independent home or for that matter an office space. This list applies to all scenarios, who wants to rent.

This week EMC announced EMC onDemand , a managed service to run enterprise content management system. I am more than thrilled to hear the news and thought things are looking good for Documentum platform. Working with Documentum platform for almost 11 years, I know first hand how difficult it is to enable the content management system as a service to users internal or external. It has been a challenge for IT to come up with a platform to provide ECM as a service. This new managed service from EMC now change the whole game in the market. So far we have seen some cloud based public CMS offerings (Google docs,, Sharepoint). However, they could not offer enterprise scale solutions, which could deal with millions of documents, approvals, workflows and archiving processes with much-needed data and network security.

If we take a step back and review those eight items I listed out for the apartment rental planning and replace them with ECM requirements, we see how simple it is to derive the value proposition to move to a cloud based , Platform-as-a-Service (PAAS) for ECM for a big company.

Now, you can ask why? and say I can have my own IT in my own shop? Ok…let me tell you few things before you decide on the best thing for your ECM deployment…
What if you get the following benefits without the hassle of owning your equipment and still achieve your business goals to manage ever-growing content under the hood..

1. Require zero Installation of EMC technology (Documentum, RSA, VMware and so on so forth)
2. Provide highest level of security
3. Ensure that everything was pre-installed and optimally configured for instant startup
4. Integrate with existing filing and collaboration products
5. freedom of use

Does it sound like a list of questions you asked before your rent a home/apt. I bet they did!!!

The cloud. Do you know what it is? More importantly, do you know how you can profit from it? Motley Fool analyst Rex Moore is here to explain both.