Cloud, Cloud, Cloud! It’s everywhere and everyone wants to get to it. But where is it? What is it? And why does everyone want to get there so fast?
Frequently, I have heard the cloud referenced simply as “somebody else’s data center.” On the surface, it seems to fit. But it is not quite that simple. The thought of leveraging infrastructure that somebody else manages is appealing to some degree, but it comes at a cost.
Of late, I have had many conversations on this topic with technology professionals and organizational leaders. When I ask them, “what is making your organization want to make the move to the cloud?” Many of the answers start with, “Well, my CFO/CIO/CTO read this article in a magazine about how the cloud can _________!” Let your imagination run wild as you fill in the blank.
The reality is, organizations want to make the shift to the cloud for any number of reasons. One of the most compelling arguments is to make workloads portable and enable the consumption of infrastructure based on need and availability. However, if the shift is not managed correctly, many organizations are making an abrupt U-Turn and that is coming at a significant cost and impact to the business; not to mention the credibility of the individuals who pushed for the shift in the first place.
The journey to the cloud starts with good purpose, measurement, design, and constraints.
PURPOSE: What is the compelling business driver for moving to the cloud?
MEASUREMENT: How will you know if you have recognized the desired business value?
DESIGN: How do you design your applications, infrastructure, and security to properly leverage the cloud to meet your purpose and recognize your measurable outcomes?
CONSTRAINTS: What are the non-negotiables for your organization and can they be properly addressed?
If done properly, the journey to the cloud can be a compelling strategy to deliver value. Also, if done properly, you may be surprised where you end up!
I have been working with customers, user, employees, etc. to address a need that generally starts as a conversation about moving to the cloud. As I work with them to implement a cloud strategy that meets their needs, we are being faced with all of the expected challenges and opportunities; cloud-native application refactoring, infrastructure as code, automation, CI/CD pipelines, resource and configuration management, security by design, Agile, and the list goes on. There are a number of industry buzzwords around this; DevOps, Shift Left, Microservices Architecture, etc. Regardless of the terms organizations adopt, the simple truth is that good inputs yield good outputs.
Through this journey, we are helping our customers change how they think about and place value on the way applications are developed, delivered and evolve. It is enabling organizations to scale their offerings in ways they had never considered and recognize new value that was not previously possible, regardless of where it ends-up being hosted. Some land in the cloud, some find more value in remaining on-premise, and other have found hybrid to be the right fit. Regardless of locale, the journey is what enabled them to have these options and change the value proposition of their offerings, not the arrival in the cloud.
Obviously, the journey must be properly planned and has complexity. However, the opportunities it provides are very real and compelling differentiators for organizations. Our unique approach enables us to fully understand your team, culture and capabilities resulting in solutions that meet you regardless of where you are on the journey. There is a lot to consider on this journey and I am excited to embark with you!
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