Welcome!

Cognitive Computing Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Shelly Palmer

Related Topics: @CloudExpo

@CloudExpo: Blog Feed Post

Ten Steps to Successful Cloud Adoption

Adopting Your Very Own Cloud

A Journey of False Starts

This is not the first time you’ve had your heart set on revolutionizing your information systems:

  • One year, you rolled out a big Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) initiative, but it was too brittle and carried high maintenance costs.
  • For a while you experimented with Web Services, but found that while they were easy to work with, they were largely insufficient to meet your broader needs due to a lack of architectural design guidelines.
  • Out-sourcing, in-sourcing, up-sourcing, down-sourcing, and cross-sourcing just seemed to shuffle the work around and tended to result in the blame-game.
  • You’ve bought every pill and tonic you could find (ESBs, network appliances, UDDI registries, load balancers, etc.), each with varying degrees of success.
  • One crazy weekend you deployed a full-scale dynamic rules engine to fully automate decision logic, but this carried hidden costs and fell short of your expectations.
  • Then you stumbled across this witch doctor who could abstract data, memory, processing power, and bandwidth through some wizardy known as ‘virtualization’.  While initially very promising, the startup costs and expertise required were obstacles that you simply could not overcome.

On the verge of losing all hope, you hear that this virtualization thingy might not have to be so expensive after all thanks to Cloud Computing.  Could it be?  Could you actually achieve your dreams of scalability, availability, and reliability, without giving your CFO a heart attack??  Could you actually adopt a Cloud of your very own?

Adopting Your Very Own Cloud

Adoption can be a scary process.  In your fear of doing something wrong, you may be tempted to buy a big, expensive consulting package and just have someone else handle everything.  You don’t need to do that.  Simply find a subject matter expert to serve as a mentor that can guide you through the process of pragmatically evaluating and possibly even adopting Cloud.  Along the way, make sure that this mentor is educating you and your team so that you are able to function effectively once this person has left the building.

Ten Steps to Successful Cloud Adoption

  1. Identify your business drivers — What are you actually trying to accomplish from a business perspective? What are your enterprise initiatives, key objectives, and targets?  Look for growth drivers as well as risk mitigation drivers.
  2. Get educated — What business opportunities does Cloud Computing present?  What are the advantages, disadvantages, and key factors that Cloud brings to the table? What cost models, value models, solution architecture, and infrastructure design changes are required in order to take advantage of Cloud Computing?  What impacts does cloud have at the enterprise, division, and individual project basis?  Throughout the adoption process, your mentor should provide education around Cloud, but at this stage you need focused attention upon the subject.
  3. Articulate a value proposition — How do you see Cloud Computing supporting one or more of the drivers identified in the first step?  There are a variety of reasons that an organization might choose to adopt Cloud (reduce maintenance costs, scale support costs during peak system usage, support after-hours service requests, business continuity, operational risks, reduce capital expenditures, accelerate growth into new markets, improve business agility, and etc.).  Identify and clearly articulate the Cloud value proposition(s) for your enterprise that are applicable given your business drivers.
  4. Define one or more scenarios — With an understanding of the value propositions that you are targeting, it is now time to get specific and define scenarios or use cases for applying Cloud Computing to address one or more of the business drivers previously identified.  These scenarios will serve as candidates for the initial Cloud adoption effort that your team will embark upon later in this process.
  5. Produce a roadmap – Using an “as-is” and “to-be” modeling technique, identify the gaps that exist between the current state of your enterprise and the desired future state for capitalizing upon Cloud.  Next, define a roadmap that shows how to move toward that cloud-enabled future state.  It is critical that this roadmap include objective and measurable milestones for your organization to work toward.
  6. Gain stakeholder buy-in — Throughout the adoption process, you will need to gain buy-in from various groups regarding this initiative.  It is particularly important to do-so after defining the roadmap and prior to actually moving forward with it.  From this point on your team will be drawing upon enterprise resources to establish governance, infrastructure, project personnel, and then deploying real solutions into production.  It is crucial that all impacted parties are on-board and ready to go.
  7. Establish governance — Oh great!  Here we go again!  Why does everyone insist that we need to govern our business initiatives?  The answer is simple - people screw things up. Governance ensures that we are all playing from the same playbook (vocabulary, portfolio, models, architecture, standards, metrics, etc.) and that the enterprise’s target objectives and risk factors are duly consider and investments are protected.  Governance should be lean, focused, and ever-present.
  8. Invest in infrastructure — Depending upon your adoption strategy, this may be very significant (server farm, policy manager and enforcement mechanism, load balancer, ESB, cloud gateway, etc.) if you are going to develop your own internal cloud or relatively simple (content-based routing proxy and possibly a service registry) if you intend to leverage an external cloud vendor.
  9. Cloud pilot — The metaphor of a test pilot has been used consistently used for years to describe initial work done in a new area.  The fact that we’re now piloting through clouds opens up a whole new set of possible puns to play around with.  Setting those aside, the importance of proving out a single, definable test case that can prove out tangible value for your enterprise is essential.  As with other pilot initiatives, it is important that you carefully select from a candidate set of possible projects.  You need something big enough to count, but small enough to be successful. Your cloud mentor should assist in this process.
  10. Enterprise roll-out — Provided that the pilot was successful, it is now time to move foward with the roadmap and look for additional opportunities to apply cloud solutions.  This may involve moving existing solutions to the cloud, consuming cloud services, or delivering brand new capabilities that have never existed.  Continue to expand the use of cloud within the enterprise so long as your solutions adhere to the governance guidelines that have been established, and they are consistent with your overall business drivers for the enterprise.

Cloud computing holds tremendous potential for both small and large organizations.  Adopting your very own cloud solution may seem daunting, but the maturing of service oriented patterns, practices, methodologies, and tools has brought cloud well within reach.  With proper guidance, your organization can evaluate the potential for cloud and pragmatically adopt it without breaking the bank.

More Stories By Kyle Gabhart

Kyle Gabhart is a subject matter expert specializing in strategic planning and tactical delivery of enterprise technology solutions, blending EA, BPM, SOA, Cloud Computing, and other emerging technologies. Kyle currently serves as a director for Web Age Solutions, a premier provider of technology education and mentoring. Since 2001 he has contributed extensively to the IT community as an author, speaker, consultant, and open source contributor.

@ThingsExpo Stories
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo have announced the conference tracks for Cloud Expo 2018. Cloud Expo will be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, and November 6-8, 2018, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DX Expo within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive ov...
Product connectivity goes hand and hand these days with increased use of personal data. New IoT devices are becoming more personalized than ever before. In his session at 22nd Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, Nicolas Fierro, CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions, will discuss how in order to protect your data and privacy, IoT applications need to embrace Blockchain technology for a new level of product security never before seen - or needed.
Smart cities have the potential to change our lives at so many levels for citizens: less pollution, reduced parking obstacles, better health, education and more energy savings. Real-time data streaming and the Internet of Things (IoT) possess the power to turn this vision into a reality. However, most organizations today are building their data infrastructure to focus solely on addressing immediate business needs vs. a platform capable of quickly adapting emerging technologies to address future ...
With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, examined the regulations and provided insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence arou...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Evatronix will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Evatronix SA offers comprehensive solutions in the design and implementation of electronic systems, in CAD / CAM deployment, and also is a designer and manufacturer of advanced 3D scanners for professional applications.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Synametrics Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Synametrics Technologies is a privately held company based in Plainsboro, New Jersey that has been providing solutions for the developer community since 1997. Based on the success of its initial product offerings such as WinSQL, Xeams, SynaMan and Syncrify, Synametrics continues to create and hone inn...
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Raju Shreewastava, founder of Big Data Trunk, provided a fun and simple way to introduce Machine Leaning to anyone and everyone. He solved a machine learning problem and demonstrated an easy way to be able to do machine learning without even coding. Raju Shreewastava is the founder of Big Data Trunk (www.BigDataTrunk.com), a Big Data Training and consulting firm with offices in the United States. He previously led the data warehouse/business intelligence and B...
"Digital transformation - what we knew about it in the past has been redefined. Automation is going to play such a huge role in that because the culture, the technology, and the business operations are being shifted now," stated Brian Boeggeman, VP of Alliances & Partnerships at Ayehu, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"Evatronix provides design services to companies that need to integrate the IoT technology in their products but they don't necessarily have the expertise, knowledge and design team to do so," explained Adam Morawiec, VP of Business Development at Evatronix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The 22nd International Cloud Expo | 1st DXWorld Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, to be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY, brings together Cloud Computing, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding busin...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
Nordstrom is transforming the way that they do business and the cloud is the key to enabling speed and hyper personalized customer experiences. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ken Schow, VP of Engineering at Nordstrom, discussed some of the key learnings and common pitfalls of large enterprises moving to the cloud. This includes strategies around choosing a cloud provider(s), architecture, and lessons learned. In addition, he covered some of the best practices for structured team migration an...
No hype cycles or predictions of a gazillion things here. IoT is here. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, an Associate Partner of Analytics, IoT & Cybersecurity at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He also discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data...
Recently, REAN Cloud built a digital concierge for a North Carolina hospital that had observed that most patient call button questions were repetitive. In addition, the paper-based process used to measure patient health metrics was laborious, not in real-time and sometimes error-prone. In their session at 21st Cloud Expo, Sean Finnerty, Executive Director, Practice Lead, Health Care & Life Science at REAN Cloud, and Dr. S.P.T. Krishnan, Principal Architect at REAN Cloud, discussed how they built...
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
DevOps at Cloud Expo – being held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's largest enterprises – and delivering real results. Among the proven benefits,...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd Cloud Expo | 1st DXWorld Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait...