Welcome back to the 2nd in our series of 6 Blogs exploring the people and process requirements of Cloud transformation. A quick recap and we’ll get right into it. If you’ve not read the first blog introducing the series you can do so here.
Cloud utilisation needs be the focus not just adoption if your aim is to acheive the needed benefits and competitive advantage. It is only when Technology, People and Process all come together that that is achieved.
This series of blogs explores four reasons why the process and people aspects all too easily get out of balance with tech-led transformation. As this is blog 2 we are exploring the 1st of our 4 reasons:
REASON 1: CLARITY OF WHY
The most important place to start when it comes to Cloud adoption & utilisation is to have total clarity across the organisation of the reason WHY you are utilising Cloud.
With Cloud being touted as the most transformative technology available (E&Y Feb 2020), it’s very easy for it to become the silver bullet for all your organisational constraints and challenges. Every organisation has a myriad of areas they need to address and if Cloud does them all then even better!
There are so many aspects of business that Cloud can help you achieve, and the internet is flooded with examples of benefit lists and how Cloud achieves these. Here is just a very short extracted list in a word cloud:
No two organisations are the same
The key here is that every organisation is starting from a different position, with a different need across many if not all of those areas, so it’s never a one size fits all solution. Knowing where you are starting from and what you want to go after is key.
Just like comparing ourselves to others at an individual level, comparing our organisation to any other doesn’t work as each one is unique, made from the sum of all the decisions previously made, each journey will therefore also need to be totally unique.
In addition not all drivers can be achieved in parallel, some are mutually exclusive, others are antagonistic to eachother, so this really requires a very clearly articulated balance to avoid the assumption that you can have both ends of the same scale at the same time.
Three simple examples that we’ve seen all too often:
Cost versus Agility
- The CTO and their teams are seeking to create optimal technology with solutions that will drive agility across their organisations but that can be expensive until it is well utilised and the CFO is expecting cost reduction in-year, not in 5yrs.
Revenue versus Efficiency
- The areas the business identify for Cloud are all about driving new revenue via speed to market and offering new digital services, whilst those running legacy systems are seeking efficiency gains through automation that will allow a reduction in resources (i.e. database or sys admins capacity increases 1000x with Cloud)
Innovation versus Productivity
- Architects and Engineers are excited about the innovative new tools and ways of working they can work within whilst the business requirements are more functional looking at being productive not technically-savvy or cutting-edge
All of the dimensions listed here are possible and desirable, just not all at the same time.
Based on the organisations current position – commercially, from a risk/control/security perspective, what it’s promised it’s consumers etc, means there will be different times for different drivers over the course of an adoption.
Being clear on what driver is primary at any given point is essential to allow decisions to be taken that will keep you on track for how you want to be positioned in the market.
Aligning technical drivers and business drivers is essential
Are you a cost driven organisation, aiming to differentiate yourself through price points. Or are you a premium organisation seeking to differentiate via service levels of product offerings. You cannot be both, and your overall strategy and technical strategy need to align or as in the first blog, that three legged stool is out of balance and you’re on your ass.