Posted: 03 Aug. 2023 8 min. read

Modern delivery and cloud computing

Benefits and challenges of modern software delivery

A blog post by Tim Potter, Principal, Deloitte Consulting LLP; Swa De, Specialist Leader, Deloitte Consulting LLP and Anjan Ghosh, Manager, Deloitte Consulting LLP


Cloud computing has grown exponentially in the past decade, with organizations across all industries adopting cloud to power innovation, provide more flexibility, and ultimately accelerate their speed to market. However, not all organizations have achieved anticipated returns on their cloud investments. Often, the cause is that these organizations have not transformed the way they deliver software-based solutions to conform with cloud-based delivery methods.

Conversely, many enterprises that are realizing their anticipated return on cloud investments have engaged a modern-delivery-based transformation journey by shifting to cloud-based platforms—meaning these organizations can deliver solutions via cross-functional, empowered teams that are able to pivot quickly and take full advantage of modern technology platforms that are elastic and rapidly deployable.

Modern delivery and its benefits

Simply migrating workloads to cloud or developing cloud-native applications is not modern delivery. These activities will likely not enable organizations to harness the full potential of cloud to reach a development and innovation velocity that provides competitive differentiation. This is because traditional methods and manual processes, testing, configurations, and deployments lack the scalability required to meet rapidly evolving customer demands.

True modern delivery focuses on Agile and iterative development, continuous feedback, and close collaboration between business and technology teams. These elements can help organizations to be more responsive to market demands, deliver enhancements or new services and products more rapidly, and—ultimately—gain a competitive edge.

Modern approaches necessitate the elasticity and flexibility to scale computing resources and the ability to leverage out-of-the-box services for rapid experimentation in a secure and automation-enabled infrastructure—both of which are facilitated by cloud. But beware, solely embracing modern delivery approaches without employing the self-service, efficiency, and automation capabilities of cloud computing will impede productivity and the ability for teams to pivot.

Also, Agile methodologies and the automation of delivery processes, such as automated test cases, configuration management, deployments, and adopting a product-based mindset, were in practice before the emergence of cloud computing. Many organizations have already achieved a level of maturity in these areas, making it comparatively easier for them to benefit from the advantages automated DevOps pipelines provide.

Case Study | Global Fortune 500 Company

The following case study shows how one Global Fortune 500 enterprise achieved material benefits by adoption of cloud and transitioning to modern delivery methods and an Agile approach simultaneously.

With the goal of being more responsive to market needs and increasing its competitiveness, a Global Fortune 500 company wanted to modernize its infrastructure and platforms and increase collaboration between its technology and business teams. The organization started small with Agile pilots and application modernization initiatives in a couple of business areas, while putting the foundational components of a cloud and modern delivery transformation in place: a secure cloud landing zone, automated DevOps tooling, defined Agile methodology, experienced coaching, and change management capabilities.

However, the organization quickly noticed that without development tooling that automated testing and controls, the agility and speed with which its Agile teams could operate was severely impacted. Similarly, in areas where applications were modernized, but the application team (or underlying platform teams) had not shifted the way they worked, the organization wasn’t capturing the value of its investment in cloud. For example, releases still only occurred once a quarter, despite the application and infrastructure being able to support more frequent releases.

However, once these issues were addressed and a strong foundation was laid, success stories from pilot projects echoed across the organization, which resulted in increased momentum and leadership support. Over the next two years, the organization was successful in extending its approach to more than a dozen global business units. Ultimately, more than 500 business and technology teams transitioned to modern delivery and Agile methods, the teams modernized dozens of legacy applications to cloud architectures, and they developed and deployed many new cloud-native solutions.

As a result of the shift to modern delivery, the client was able to:

  • Launch new digital products in a fraction of time it took with traditional methods. One product was launched in less than three months and delivered a full investment payback within the first six months of being launched.
  • Increase productivity of product development teams by as much as 66% by eliminating manual testing, control evidencing, environment build activities, and other process inefficiencies.
  • Reduce rework by 30% by improving collaboration between business and technology teams, while engaging digital solutions customers in new ways.
  • Deliver over $150 million in annual cost savings to the company’s bottom line.

Potential challenges

Despite the numerous benefits, shifting to a modern delivery method and mindset can present challenges that organizational leaders must navigate. Typically, there is resistance to change as people can be hesitant to adopt new practices. Moreover, many organizations attempt to drive an Agile or modern delivery shift from the technology organization without having gained the necessary buy-in from their business partners. Successful modern delivery transformations are championed at the executive level and supported by an organization-wide change management function.

Truly adopting modern delivery methods and transforming the way an organization operates is also a multiyear journey—one that should be guided by a central team that objectively monitors progress against transformation key performance indicators, maintains alignment across the enterprise, and can position resources (training, tooling enhancements, coaching, etc.) to parts of the organization that require them the most.


Achieving the maximum benefits from an investment in cloud or Agile requires dedicated focus—modernizing the technology environment while shifting the way the organization works. Together, cloud and modern delivery enable organizations to achieve productivity, speed, and responsiveness that are necessary to compete effectively in the marketplace—now and in the future. 


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David Linthicum

David Linthicum

Managing Director | Chief Cloud Strategy Officer

As the chief cloud strategy officer for Deloitte Consulting LLP, David is responsible for building innovative technologies that help clients operate more efficiently while delivering strategies that enable them to disrupt their markets. David is widely respected as a visionary in cloud computing—he was recently named the number one cloud influencer in a report by Apollo Research. For more than 20 years, he has inspired corporations and start-ups to innovate and use resources more productively. As the author of more than 13 books and 5,000 articles, David’s thought leadership has appeared in InfoWorld, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, NPR, Gigaom, and Prior to joining Deloitte, David served as senior vice president at Cloud Technology Partners, where he grew the practice into a major force in the cloud computing market. Previously, he led Blue Mountain Labs, helping organizations find value in cloud and other emerging technologies. He is a graduate of George Mason University.

Tim Potter

Tim Potter

Principal | Deloitte Consulting LLP

Tim is a principal in Deloitte Consulting LLP’s Technology Strategy and Engineering practice and serves as Deloitte’s US Engineering Leader for Insurance, Investment Management, and Real Estate sectors. He has more than 20 years of strategy consulting and technology transformation experience and has worked with Fortune 500 organizations around the world. Tim has extensive experience partnering with senior executives to define business-led technology transformation strategies, establish executable implementation roadmaps, and shift an organization's operating model to capture the full benefits of a transformation. In partnership with his clients, Tim has scaled agile delivery practices to thousands of professionals across the globe, modernized legacy applications, built new solutions on cloud-native platforms, and launched modern data and analytics solutions. Tim has helped his clients to expand into new markets, capitalize on growth opportunities, accelerate speed to market with new products and services, improve bottom line performance, and minimize operational risk. Tim holds an MBA from the University of California, Berkeley and a BS in Information Systems from the University of Maryland, College Park.