This post first appeared on Intel's IT Galaxy blog earlier this month. Check it out - lot's of good content there.

Cloud computing, data centre 3.0 - whatever you call it, the cloud is changing the way we do business, work, live our lives, and generally interact with data and services. But the weight of inertia is often on the first step - how can a company make the initial moves into the cloud? Here's 10 simple signs that could mean it's time you took a look at the cloud.

  1. Your software licensing is a mess. You don't know which PCs or users have licenses for which packages. And you are constantly having to delete licenses from user profiles in order to free up more versions of the software.
  2. Your server workload fluctuates wildly and sometimes unpredictably.
  3. Users are constantly reporting frustrations with a slow network, access to the database etc
  4. You are many iterations behind on the latest versions of crucial applications that underpin your business
  5. IT tells you that you need to take the server offline in order to install upgrades, but your business can't afford the downtime
  6. IT costs are spiraling
  7. Your workforce is frustrated - they want to have a more mobile productive working pattern but your IT constraints means their locked to your legacy desktops
  8. You're increasingly concerned about your server's green credentials
  9. Your business growth is unpredictable - you need flexibility but are worried fixed costs will constrain you
  10. You want more flexibility - in applications, storage and services

This next bit wasn't on Intel's orginial post, but I'm adding it here because if you're thinking about the cloud you need to learn what products and services are available. You can learn more about Microsoft's cloud services offerings on the mid-market website.