How to start your Public Cloud Journey?

In the digitalisation era cloud technologies are great business enablers for the organisations to accelerate innovation, time to market and create competitive advantages. At the same time, using the cloud can help avoid the large capex investments that are typical for hardware renewal cycles, freeing up cash for business initiatives, and allowing for more business agility in a changing economy.

Irina Neagu Muceli, Head of Sales, Marketing & Communication – Elgon

Over the last few years, Elgon has become a leader in the Luxembourg market in helping customers adopt a cloud strategy.

In February 2021 Gartner said that the “deployments to the cloud are accelerating; almost all of the respondents to the 2020 Gartner Cloud End-User Buying Behavior Survey indicated that their organization plans to maintain or increase IT spending on cloud computing in the next 12 months.”

During our daily conversations with our customers, the first question we get is: “How should we start our Public Cloud Journey?” The answer is different for every organization and the most exciting part is to map the cloud initiatives to our customers’ business strategy.

In a “Mobile First – Cloud First” world, SaaS is the first choice; whenever possible, the use of mature SaaS solutions for collaboration, CRM, ERP, HR systems is the way forward to take benefit of the short time to market, spend less, and avoid becoming a software factory when this is not the main purpose of the organization’s business model.

The workloads that are “born in the Cloud” are the ones that cannot be created on-premises without big efforts and huge investments: high performance computing for big calculations in areas like finance, industry, self-driving cars, as well as Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain and genomics … These services are often available as PaaS solutions within the public cloud. Trying to build them on premises might be a waste of time and valuable resources. The “fail fast, learn fast” concept is applicable with these type of solutions as the pay-as-you-go model allows you to consume and pay only for the cloud services that bring value and purpose to your business.

But the most challenging area from the perspective of the operating model transformation comes with the data center migrations and transformations of our customers.

The methodology used by Elgon to identify workloads to be migrated from an on-premises data center to the public cloud starts with an assessment to separate the perfect cloud candidates from the legacy environment that cannot be migrated or needs more effort to be transformed.

“The Five Rs” rationalization methodology is supporting the consultative approach to analyze and build migration strategies:

  • Rehost: Known as a lift and shift migration that helps customers to reduce capital expenses, freeing up datacenter space and usually achieving rapid return on investment in the cloud. Customers like this choice for the easiness of their internal IT to adopt the changes.
  • Refactor: It is a good idea to slightly refactor an application to fit a PaaS-based model; common drivers might include code portability, faster and shorter updates, greater cloud efficiency.
  • Rearchitect: Some aging applications need to be rearchitected before transformation, as they might not be compatible with the cloud providers because of architectural decisions made before. Other applications that are cloud-compatible but not cloud-native need to be rearchitected into cloud-native applications to win cost and operational efficiencies.
  • Rebuild: In some scenarios where we need to accelerate innovation, build applications faster and reduce operational costs, the cloud-native approach is the right choice.
  • Replace: SaaS first as mentioned at the beginning of this article is the way forward while standardizing around industry best practices, accelerating adoption of business-process-driven approaches, and reallocating development investments into applications that create competitive differentiation advantages on the market.

Every organization has its own business and technical challenges; therefore, the recipes are different from a customer to another one. The parameters that need to be taken into consideration while defining the strategy are related to the customer cloud maturity, organization adoption to change, financial perspectives regarding the existing hardware, software, and data center contracts, as well as the CxO level engagement to support the operational teams whenever needed.

At every step of the cloud journey, the people are the key!  

At Elgon we care about every customer and we built personalized cloud journeys allowing them to achieve their goals.

This working methodology is the first step within the Secure Cloud Adoption Framework that we will cover in another article…