The cloud enables companies to function on an operating expense (opex) budget rather than a capital expense (capex) budget. Cloud computing provides faster time to market, chargeback ability, and the capability to spin up and spin down virtual machines (VMs) to meet fluctuating requirements. The cloud is an infinitely-scalable environment, bursting with potential.

However, speed, scalability, and virtualisation do not — in and of themselves — guarantee a return on investment (ROI). All the benefits of the cloud remain potential instead of actual if the cloud is not managed for maximum efficiency and cost-effectiveness. That brings companies who are in the cloud or who are considering a move to the cloud to a very important point: You can't manage what you can't measure.