In times of turbulence and economic instability it becomes increasingly important to do the right thing at the right time. This especially holds true in the cloud.
With some wave splashes during and after the corona pandemic we have in general experienced a long period of time with optimism and a growth agenda. That’s not the top priority in many organizations right now. As a recent Gartner study showed, CIOs are primarily focused on operational excellence and how you, for instance, lower operational risk and operating costs enabled by the cloud.
A lot of businesses transitioned into the cloud looking for business benefits – taking advantage of new services, easier scalability, leveraging technologies such as AI, speeding up the innovation process and so on. In their eager to do so some have neglected two important issues. The first is centered around external factors – how do you utilize the cloud to create a resilient and futureproof business without overpaying the cloud vendors? The second is centered around internal factors – how do you use the cloud for cost optimization and automation to slim down your current operating model, right-size internal IT resources and redefine their role?
Instead of reaping the expected benefits many businesses have actually spend additional resources on operating their new cloud model. The CEOs of these companies are turning to their CIOs saying, we accelerated our investments in the cloud, and you promised to deliver digital dividends. How is this reflected in our enterprise financials?
The good answer to the CEO right now is to focus your cloud efforts on targeted business use cases creating business resilience and operational excellence while ensuring that both external and internal factors are executed with a strategic mindset on balancing cost reductions and exploring business needs. We call it recession-proofing your cloud operation.
1) Rearchitect your cloud strategy for the future
A lot have happened in the last six months. There is a war going on in Ukraine, and consequently an energy crisis has emerged, global supply chains are being affected, cyber risk levels have increased, inflation is stressing economies all over, and so on. Therefore, revisit and redesign your cloud strategy, and make sure that your business objectives driving your cloud initiatives are still the same. If not, adjust accordingly on both the business side and the technology side.
2) Reduce complexity in your cloud operating model
Enterprise IT complexity is inescapable for most companies. However, it is crucial to understand which key factors are driving your IT complexity in order set up standards and processes that reduce the inherent complexity of hybrid cloud and multi-cloud environments. Utilizing build-in automation and abstraction are key factors if you want to avoid hitting the cloud complexity wall.
3) Eliminate cloud technology redundancy
Today, we see companies using different tools for handling business processes such as security, governance, configurations and management in different clouds. Redundant tooling across the cloud estate is a waste of resources and only add complexity to your cloud operation. Use common cloud tools for multiple business processes where it’s possible. It simplifies your operation and reduces costs.
4) Optimize your cloud spend
Do a broad analysis of your actual business needs in the cloud. Are you for example paying for unused resources? Are there workloads you can turn off? Would lower-cost disaster recovery solutions suffice? Do you need to put all your data in “hot storage” where you can access data immediately, or can some of your data be put in “cold storage” where it can take hours before data are accessible? Price – of course – differs dramatically between hot and cold storage.
When you start recession-proofing your cloud, you target your cloud business use cases towards growth and resilient business objectives, you reduce complexity in your cloud operating model, you remove unused and overlapping services, and you optimize the way you consume cloud resources. With the obvious and profitable side benefit that it will be actual business needs and not the lack of cloud management that steer your digital transformation process.
Halvor er Partner og leder for skytransformasjon i Norge og Norden. Han er også COO for Deloitte Consulting Norge, og leder bransjegruppen Retail and Consumer Products i Norge. Halvor hjelper klienter med å løse komplekse strategi- og prosessrelaterte problemstillinger, og teknologiorienterte utfordringer. Han har særlig fokus på å hjelpe kunder med å dra nytte av fordeler ved riktig bruk av skyteknologi, både i forretningsutvikling, kundeinteraksjon og effektivisering av IT-prosesser. I sitt arbeid, jobber Halvor interaktivt med kunden med å utvikle nye forretningsmodeller, organisasjonsstrukturer og for å støtte teknologiløsninger som sammen leder til nye forretningsmuligheter. Han er ekspert på å identifisere forretningsfordelene ved prosjektene han jobber på, og hvordan disse best kan realiseres.