Deconstructing Cloud Contracts for Optimized Outcomes and Maximized ROI

Unum’s Gautam Roy on How to Navigate the Ambiguities in Cloud Contracts
Gautam Roy, senior vice president and CTO, Unum

Whether it is maximizing return on investment (ROI), mitigating security risk or avoiding vendor lock-in, when it’s time to move out/on, the key to optimizing the cloud outcomes for a CIO lies in getting the contract right.

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Cloud contracts can, at best, be described as ambiguous and can become the undoing of organizations’ cloud projects. The complexities surrounding SLAs and pricing models are not only a way for overshooting the planned costs dramatically but also for data disasters. Therefore, spotting any hidden costs and potential risks in the contract right at the start can save the business a risky and costly failure.

Gautam Roy, senior vice president and CTO, Unum, shares key learnings from his experience and suggests bringing in internal stakeholders - including procurement, contract management, supply chain, pricing legal and other teams - on board early on in the process. It should not be something where technology and IT are leading the discussion and then pulling in other functions toward the end.

"Contract discussions need to be a collaborative process. To do this right, CIOs need to first ensure they have a fairly good understanding of what they are trying to do from an architecture design and business perspective," Roy says. "Once that is done, invite all the relevant corporate functions and share with them what they are trying to do, why and when, and then work together on drawing up the contract for a better outcome."

In this video interview with Information Security Media Group, Roy discusses:

  • Key tenets of cloud contracts and effective negotiations for optimized outcomes and maximized ROI;
  • Checklist for CIOs before signing up with a cloud service provider to avoid lock-ins and bad experiences;
  • Why cloud costs exceed the planned expenditures and how to keep them down.

Roy has led all aspects of strategic, tactical and operational IT management across industries, including financial services, manufacturing, consumer product group, customer services, logistics and utility services. He has expertise in the areas of digital re-imagination, product development, application development, infrastructure, software quality testing, technology rationalization, business process re-engineering and customer service.

About the Author

Shipra Malhotra

Shipra Malhotra

Managing Editor, ISMG

Malhotra has more than two decades of experience in technology journalism and public relations. She writes about enterprise technology and security-related issues and has worked at, Dataquest and The Indian Express.

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