In my conversations with customers, partners, and peers, one topic seems to bubble to the surface more than any other: How do I financially justify the move to the cloud?

Initially, the notion of a business case for cloud computing seemed almost redundant. It seemed to me that the cost savings associated with cloud computing were self-evident and therefore no further explanation was needed. Based on my conversations with people in the industry—consumers, providers, and manufacturers of IT goods and services—cloud adoption appeared to be a foregone conclusion. Based on the data, cloud implementation was either already well under way or was on the near-term priority list of most IT leaders worldwide.

Yet the reality is otherwise. For ...

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