Choosing Between On-Premise and Cloud Enterprise Software Solutions

Doug Cox
Doug Cox

By Doug Cox, chief strategic officer, Elixir Technologies.

With the dramatic changes that have taken place in the U.S. healthcare landscape over the past several years, it’s not surprising that healthcare CIOs increasingly find leading transformation and delivering on the organization’s core strategies and objectives included in their responsibilities. (See SSi-SEARCH Research “Healthcare’s Million Dollar Man”) The CIOs for small to mid-sized payers and third party administrators are no exception.

When it comes to freeing up IT resources for mission-critical strategic tasks, decisions regarding enterprise software solutions should not be overlooked, as they can have a significant impact on success for healthcare organizations in the small to mid-sized range.

While historical experience in these IT organizations may create a bias toward choosing on-premise software solutions, one should give serious consideration to three major benefits that cloud-based solutions can deliver to the organization: speed to market, scalability and total cost of ownership. These potential—and sought after—benefits hold the promise to deliver critical return on investment and serve the critical goals of both the IT organization and the business users within the company. Let’s take a closer look at each.

Speed to Market

At first glance, the initial deployment time for cloud or desktop (on-premise) applications can appear similar. However, two areas that impact overall deployment time should not be overlooked: capabilities and accessibility.

Capabilities

One characteristic typical of cloud applications is that they generally have more robust capabilities than on-premise software. This makes them easier to use and manage by a broader group within the organization and readily delivers on the promise of fast deployment. Overall deployment of cloud applications often takes less time than desktop applications because so much of it can be performed by a wider range of (less technical) users, rather than being dependent on the schedule and resources of IT.

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