We can think of the “cloud journey” as taking place in five phases, with organizations moving through these phases both iteratively and in parallel.
The start comes with formulation of a vision, which hones the understanding of the value of using cloud services for the company.
The roadmap is created through analysis of the existing infrastructure and of the requirements for future operation that arise from the vision. A cost-effectiveness study considers qualitative and quantitative factors alike in order to counter incorrect expectations of cost savings through the public cloud.
The platform setup and operation phase is all about building an environment in the public cloud. It is during this phase that the benefit of a transparent vision becomes apparent, as it allows the organization to formulate principles that serve as guidance for central architecture decisions during subsequent phases.
This is followed by migration of on-premises services and the development of cloud applications as part of cloud adoption. This is accompanied by the development of an organization with associated processes and skills that integrates the use of public cloud and on-premises services. The cloud target operating model (TOM) strives for continuous evolution and refinement guided by the company’s goals.
Experience has shown that there are four elements to any successful cloud journey:
- adjustment of the organization and skills to reflect the new circumstances,
- a strategy and, based on that strategy, a catalog of the services to be performed in the future,
- a technical implementation that is scalable, and
- active management of the transformation project so that when the new services are in use, the old systems can be dismantled effectively.
Each of these success factors is also reflected in the phases of the cloud journey. This project, too, is a major challenge, like any transformation. For this reason, companies should look to standards and proven methods for guidance. We will be presenting these here in later posts.