It’s hard to not hear about the cloud these days. It seems like everywhere you turn, businesses are discussing cloud transformation strategy, or have already started their journeys. But is it just buzz(words), or something more that you need to know about?
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If you’re a business leader, technical decision maker, or generally interested in the opportunity for technology to enable business outcomes, then stick around. We’ll take a high-level look at what cloud transformation actually is, and what it can be when fully embraced.
What is cloud transformation, really?
Plainly put, cloud transformation is everybody’s business! This isn’t just a fad for those who are technically inclined. In fact, if your technology teams are telling the business how cloud will help technically, then you may need to reconsider how to turn that conversation around. Here are some questions you can ask yourself.
How can cloud help your business?
To achieve the most value from cloud transformation, this is one of the first questions to ask. And often the best way to phrase the conversation is with a business-centric focus.
Cloud isn’t just about technology for technology’s sake. Nor is it just shifting your digital estate from on-premises to the cloud. In fact, it doesn’t even have to be all-in-the-cloud, or even just one cloud provider. It can be whatever type of cloud deployment makes sense for the business to best achieve business outcomes.
Cloud transformation is an opportunity to realize greater business value.
READ: 7 Common Cloud Adoption Mistakes
Two-thirds of companies report not capturing expected cloud benefits. The 7 Common Cloud Adoption Mistakes eBook details the missteps businesses make that can keep their cloud efforts grounded.
What value can businesses achieve through cloud transformation?
Cloud has fundamentally changed how technology is now procured and managed. This technology revolution enables greater, simpler, on-demand access to technology in ways never before possible.
Businesses can now rapidly switch on or switch off a large variety of technical services and products all across the globe. And just with the click of a button.
This can lead to a variety of measurable outcomes for businesses across all industries. We’re talking faster store opening times, reduced manufacturing faults, improved customer satisfaction ratings, increased market gains, digital disruption, and much more!
So what does the cloud transformation journey look like?
Every cloud transformation strategy is different, but there are some common considerations you’ll want to take into account. Achieving business value requires business direction and sponsorship. Business should lead the discussion around drivers and desired outcomes. This isn’t just about technology.
As transformation is defined by business outcomes, it is important to ensure the business itself aligns around these goals. Transformation includes both greater cloud adoption, and greater organizational cloud maturity. Success is rarely achieved with one of these alone. You should take care to deliberately progress these together in a controlled way.
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How can your business leverage cloud?
Over time, businesses may need to modernize their usage of technology, but also people and processes. So, this might include:
- Organizational adjustments, such as shifting from functional silos to cross functional teams
- Changes to project management and culture, such as introducing agile practices
- Streamlined processes providing self-service access to cloud (within guardrails defined by the business. You’ll want to consider regulatory and business requirements)
- Greater cloud literacy across the business to allow ideas and innovations, which can then be broadly surfaced and rapidly experimented with
- Technical development and retention to support the business, both now and into the future.
Of course, these are just some examples of possible changes a business might undertake to better leverage the power of the cloud. All in support of business outcomes.
If you agree that cloud transformation can be much more than a buzzword, and much more than just technology for technology’s sake, then you might be interested in exploring the journey further!
To learn more about the benefits, challenges, and cloud transformation journey in general, check out my course, Cloud Transformation: The Big Picture. Or dig into some Cloud transformation FAQs: Culture, teams, and cloud fluency at scale for more blog post goodness.