Organisations should commit to a mature transformation of their governance, technology, applications and management processes in order to better adopt cloud services.
The first step for all organisations is to provide clear direction in a cloud strategy and link it to their digital, ICT and organisational strategies, vision and goals. The cloud strategy may include how to implement a cloud-first approach, to the sourcing of ICT as-a-service in order to enhance service delivery, and be responsive and agile when proven to deliver best business value.
A turning point for ICT
The implementation of a cloud strategy involves the development of a well-designed cloud adoption approach including clearly defined business drivers, comprehensive assessment criteria, mitigating of cloud issues and capturing key lessons from earlier cloud projects.
Cloud adoption can be a critical turning point for ICT in an agency and a vital step to enable digital transformation due to the significant improvement in availability, functionality, mobility, scalability and cost effectiveness from traditional ICT. However cloud adoption without proactive planning and comprehensive design and architecture documents that align to business goals, objectives and expectations may result in a failed cloud program and implementation.
Cloud Adoption Framework
The suggested stages for adoption of cloud in an organisation are shown below and they provide guidance in cloud migration. The stages are shown below in a linear fashion but several stages can be occurring at the one time and repeated at various stages while some stages are not required for small implementations.
The Cloud Adoption Framework should include clearly defined goals, defined perspectives (such as business and security) and a maturity model. To provide the high level implementation plan, a 3-5 year as-a-service roadmap is required with IaaS, PaaS, SaaS and XaaS (Anything as-a-service) mapping out the organisation’s planned transition to the cloud.
Moving application workloads to the cloud has many benefits but the right cloud migration plan for an application can depend on the application’s specific characteristics and the goals and priorities of the organisation. Moving applications to the cloud can range from the simplest, lowest cost option of rehosting to IaaS (lift and shift), refactoring to take advantage of cloud flexibility in PaaS, right through to replace with a SaaS application. It is important to not miss the associated step of decommissioning the legacy application(s), associated technologies and data migration when replacing as this will ensure unnecessary costs are avoided. SaaS applications may deliver new capabilities not available in the legacy applications that can in turn deliver new required business services across multiple channels.
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