Public cloud services were a key part of the operating environment for a software platform company that helps businesses analyze their security, service quality, operational efficiency and regulatory compliance. Like many of its customers, the company relied heavily on public cloud services — popular because they are perceived as less expensive than buying equipment and hiring staff to maintain it.

But that perception is not necessarily accurate. The cloud is easier. But it’s not always cheaper.

Sales teams relied on the company’s computing environment to demo its software, which scours logs from applications and network infrastructure, and then presents actionable data for customers’ IT staff and other personnel. But the effectiveness of those demos was undermined because sales teams had to use emulators and canned scenarios rather than live infrastructure and real-world data. The reason? The company’s cloud provider didn’t provide low-level access to the infrastructure running its applications.

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