Cloud center of excellence

The fast track to becoming a cloud company.

With the introduction of the digital workplace (DWP), many companies have already taken the first step. But how should they proceed in order to truly leverage the great potential of the cloud?  

Many working methods have already been modernized in a sustainable way. At the same time, however, employees expect more and more from the applications they use. For companies to reap the benefits of the cloud transformation, such as greater flexibility and efficiency, the next step must now follow: making business and professional applications usable via the cloud in order to prevent delays in work processes. To name one example: It must be possible to send finalized contracts or offers that are crucial to business to customers from the home office immediately and without any problems. Who can afford to, or would want to, put off their customers until the next day just because a template is not available remotely? This is where a comprehensive cloud transformation creates lean processes, high availability, and applications that are up to date at all times.  

For IT departments, the transformation into the cloud company of the future entails a number of challenges that demand competent solutions. After all, they not only have to deal with migration and the management of cloud services and new developments: Someone also has to keep existing applications and the existing infrastructure running. 

Professional external management and technology consultants are there to support IT departments with their expertise in every phase of the cloud transformation. An important milestone is the early development of the necessary core competencies for the later operation of the infrastructure, ideally in a cloud center of excellence (CCoE).  


Competently mastering the challenges of IT departments

The transformation to the cloud is changing IT departments because it’s not just about running an infrastructure. 

  • Running a legacy infrastructure and applications while managing cloud services  

IT departments are now faced with the challenge of continuing to operate legacy applications and the corresponding infrastructure while simultaneously managing modern cloud services. 

  • Offering in-house cloud computing capacity and cloud-native apps 

Companies frequently also seek to migrate their own computing capacities to the cloud as a short-term solution so that they can close their own data centers, for example. In some cases, servers are migrated for this purpose; in other cases, applications are redesigned to be cloud-native or purchased as a service. 

  • Making business and professional applications usable via the cloud 

In addition, IT departments are confronted with requests from specialist departments to provide more and more applications in the modern digital workplace. Parallel to regular operations, IT departments must therefore evaluate a large number of new and existing applications, design and develop the new apps, and run them all. 

Beyond its tasks as an organizational unit, IT must position itself as a center of competence and a business enabler of the digital transformation in order to be acknowledged as a partner of the specialist departments and to help shape a company’s business success in the long term.  

Cloud based applications

What a cloud center of excellence (CCoE) can do

How can these tasks be solved while providing applications at the desired speed and quality? Regular structures and processes often fail to do this – so an alternative is needed. 

In a cloud center of excellence (CCoE), experts from different areas can work together to get around existing line-of-business assignments, thereby significantly accelerating coordination processes. The goal is to achieve business and technological agility. This applies to all phases: during the cloud roll-out, in the period of increasing cloud automation, and for the time following the cloud transformation. Evaluation criteria such as cost, flexibility, complexity, and speed are at the heart of both operational and development-related issues.  

A CCoE makes a significant contribution to overcoming existing structures and pigeonholes and taking an interdisciplinary approach to collaboration in order to integrate as many areas of the company as possible in the paradigm shift towards cloud-based architectures. The working method here is comparable with the DevOps approach.  

Experts for cloud application development are bundled together in the CCoE, and requirements engineers can use available technologies to elicit and specify requirements with the specialist departments. Technology experts from the CCoE can be integrated and provide support for the required release processes, and experts for operation and support also find their place in a well-functioning CCoE, ensuring the reliable operation of the solutions it provides. These profiles primarily address the demand to position IT as a partner of the business that provides state-of-the-art solutions. The CCoE is further reinforced by experts for the basic implementation, governance, and operation of required basic platforms (e.g., Azure) that ensure sustained use. 

External partners can help companies pool the knowledge required for this and build up cloud competencies for long-term, continuous improvement and future changes. As has been shown in practice, companies can quickly develop this knowledge in mixed teams composed of external partners and their own resources and then appropriate it for themselves. 

A major advantage of the CCoE: Cloud centers of excellence enable IT managers to scale much faster. This way, companies can quickly build up expertise in cloud technologies in the framework of a team before taking the next step of transferring the established processes to the line organization. 


From cloud strategy to successful implementation

Cloud strategy
A customer example from practice

What form can such a project take? A high-tech customer in the energy industry has already rolled out Microsoft 365. Now he wants to migrate the on-premise data center to the cloud so that all data is available at the digital workstations.  

In addition to M365, the customer has launched Azure and Power Platform as basic technologies. These technologies make it possible to develop the right strategy for the migration of legacy applications and development of new requirements from the specialist departments. The focus here is on the question: Where are the different enterprise applications best mapped? 

In a cloud center of excellence (CCoE) that Campana & Schott is setting up together with the experts from the company, everyone in one organizational unit is working together and responsible for the entire cloud migration. For this purpose, the CCoE manages the transition of applications to cloud-native applications in an agile lifecycle: from requirements elicitation to development to operation and agile further development, also with the use of existing building blocks.  

In the absence of internal expertise, Campana & Schott can assume multiple specialist roles in the CCoE, for example in application development or requirements elicitation. The CCoE enables the company to quickly build up cloud expertise and create new structures for cross-departmental collaboration. In the CCoE, the requirements of the different specialist departments are optimized, and cloud-native applications are implemented much more quickly. 


The transfer of business processes and applications to the cloud offers numerous advantages for companies: It can reduce costs, accelerate development times and times-to-market, and render business processes more efficient. In order for companies to reap the full scope of the advantages of cloud transformation, they should combine their competencies in a CCoE, where they can build up cloud expertise and promote agile, interdisciplinary collaboration. This way, the company can achieve cloud excellence through continuous improvements. In addition, the cloud should not only be the concern of experts; an awareness and sense of fascination for the cloud should be cultivated among all employees.  


Bastian Emondts

Bastian Emondts

Senior Manager | Head of Cloud Application Development

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