A bad cloud contract can devastate any business, and a recent article “8 sure-fire ways to screw up a cloud contract” should be a wake-up call, but unfortunately many businesses learn the hard way. By way of example, a recent cloud contract that I negotiated contained no provisions for Service Levels (SLA) or data backup.
Computerworld’s November 19, 2013 article included these 8 things business can do to guarantee bad cloud contracts:
- Pay for all of your cloud services up front
- Sign a long-term contract without negotiating service-level commitments and penalties for noncompliance
- Don’t vet the contract for hidden charges that might come back to bite you
- Sign off on the contract before shopping around for better terms
- Don’t worry about how multiple SLAs will affect the end-to-end performance of your business processes
- Let the salesperson talk you into adding services that you’re not ready to use
- Keep your on-premises systems running in parallel with the new cloud service
- Don’t negotiate a volume pricing agreement that accommodates the best- and worst-case changes in your seat count
Of course, using a lawyer who knows and understands cloud services is essential to any successful cloud contract.