Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of AWS is critical for any potential and existing customers. With its growing offerings and expanding "marketplace" of additional resources, customers must understand where and how to engage to ensure they are procuring the right resources within their budgets.
Corporate IT departments have always established computing, IT brand and standards for business units to follow. As computing prices continue to fall and more computing resources are available through monthly (or recurring) fees, more and more business units have the flexibility to procure IT solutions within discretionary spending limits and leave corporate IT departments to focus on the integration of solutions. Corporate IT departments must set up "standards" requirements to govern business unit purchasing to ensure that corporate governance and regulatory and compliance requirements are maintained in this new IT procurement environment.
Business unit or LOB purchasing of IT products, solutions and services is exploding as IT pricing continues to fall and solutions are available at low monthly rates. Business units want and are embracing self-service procurement with applications, but generally lack knowledge and experience with selecting and integrating cloud applications, which could impact business units, corporate IT and overall corporate requirements, goals and success.
Accurate forecasting and cost controls with AWS can be challenging as pricing is not guaranteed in the AWS consumption-based computing model.
Established and knowledgeable partners have historically been held with corporate IT and focused on transactional relationships. As computing is morphing into recurring revenue based pricing, some partners may struggle to adapt or fail to successfully transition to this new pricing environment, which could leave corporate customers with fewer partner choices in the future.
Many startups are challenged with finding a flexible computing platform with rich resources, services and like-minded people to help accelerate success. AWS is positioning itself as the most startup friendly resource and providing startups with two initial leverage points in its AWS Activate program: