8 key building blocks to create a robust cloud strategy
The majority of CIO’s agree that cloud is the foundation of their digital transformation and yet, many are struggling to navigate the complexities of cloud to drive business innovation. Having a cloud strategy is not only necessary but also big help on the cloud transformation journey. So how to build a robust cloud strategy? Here are Sogeti Sweden Cloud expert Vikas Kumar's five cents on the subject.
According to a recent survey by Gartner*1 less than 33% of enterprises have a documented cloud strategy and even less have a strategy that is relevant for underpinning their business growth. This highlights the need of a robust cloud strategy that can drive business growth with agility and innovative technologies at a justifiable investment.
Why do I need a cloud strategy?
A robust cloud strategy not only defines the path which unifies the IT strategy with business goals, but also helps the organization to optimize the existing IT landscape for a maximized ROI. An effective cloud strategy helps to:
- Build a business-centric technology in order to achieve business goals
- Speed up business outcomes by enabling quick application of cloud tenets
- Find a balance between IT & business to achieve benefits of cloud
The adoption of cloud is becoming a business requirement, but organizations are facing significant challenges ahead of them when it comes to adopting cloud. As I work with clients across all sectors the most common complexities faced by organizations on the IT and business front include:
- Cloud adoption, migration, and integration
- Data security
- Cost management
- Compliance and governance
- Availability of skilled resources and expertise
What is a good cloud strategy?
The art of designing a robust cloud strategy lies in orchestrating the challenges and converting them into the milestones of your digital transformation journey leveraging cloud. The most important point to remember with this vision is that cloud is not about the “Where” but rather about the “How.”
The magic of a good cloud strategy lies in the making. Your technology leadership can be defined through the flow of this strategy: right from the vision to adopt cloud and leverage it as a business enhancer, drive innovation, maximize the ROI, and make your operations more pragmatic.
It is of utmost importance that the vision of initiating the cloud journey is in accordance to the business goals. This is necessary in order to ensure that the focus can be accordingly brought in the cloud strategy. This would include answering to the question on whether the key focus of business is on driving innovation, bringing agility in the business, or ensuring cost optimization.
How to implement a robust cloud strategy?
A good cloud strategy should be focused on the business goals while leveraging other important areas like design architecture, automation, integration levers to bring in optimization at various levels.
The building blocks of a robust cloud strategy must include:
- Business goals: Aligning IT to business has been a long journey and with cloud we have an opportunity to make it happen. A clear business vision can be translated into requirements with respect to cloud capabilities.
- Journey & Adoption: With requirements defined, the obvious next step is to conduct a gap analysis on the current environment so that a roadmap meeting the requirements can be charted out.
- Target Operating Model: It is a given that ways of working will not remain the same with cloud, and so a revamped organization with new roles and ways of working will need to be set up.
- Process & Governance: With new ways of working, the processes need to be cloud-ified, so to say; and taming the new beast will require new chains (newer policies and checkpoints, such as a governing body) in order to provide your business all the flexibility it needs to transform.
- Cloud design framework: You need an abstract of various cloud design architecture that perfectly matches the requirements, in order to transform the business drivers to the required cloud capabilities. From IaaS, PaaS, SaaS to multi-hybrid cloud or the micro services; a layered design architecture becomes the blueprint of success for your business.
- Financials: Joe Davila, KPMG’s CIO Advisory Director points out “Companies are spending, on average, 36% more on cloud than they actually need.” A strong financial metrics integrated with governance ensures proper analysis & assessment of the resources within cloud. Any organization should also establish metrics to identify & harvest cost saving opportunities.
- Security & Compliance: A cloud strategy should also emphasize on the selection & implementation of controls that is needed to satisfy industry and regulatory requirements faster, achieve data privacy and confidentiality goals, and move ahead with strategic initiative confidently with minimal overhead expenses.
- Organizational change management: Any organization is made up of people and drifting away from traditional ways of working to cloud requires a thoughtful methodology on increasing skills and awareness on cloud within the company. To succeed in cloud adoption, a strategy must have ways to tackle through the culture. Some of the commonly used methods are using evangelists/ cloud champions within teams, exercising authorities, redefining cultural values, etcetera.
Heading for cloud nine?
As you may have understood by now I am passionate about the possibilities of cloud and most of all creating concrete value in the cloud – fast. Moving forward I will successively dive deeper into each of the 8 key building blocks for cloud strategies, one by one. So, moving towards cloud nine and want a hand? Stay tuned for upcoming blogposts or feel free to reach out to me directly.
- Vikas KumarCloud Practice Head, Branch Stockholm
073-023 53 17
Vikas KumarCloud Practice Head, Branch Stockholm
073-023 53 17