As we navigate a third national lockdown, remote working has become the norm for many. This has been the ultimate test for companies’ IT infrastructure, and cloud technology has played a central role in keeping businesses running smoothly.
For some companies, cloud-based video conferencing and collaboration tools and services have been key to ensuring as little disruption as possible. But for companies relying on infrastructure that was suddenly stuck in offices or data centres they couldn’t access, moving to remote-working caused major upheaval.
In the midst of massive economic disruption, companies that haven’t yet embraced cloud-based services have a choice: do they do so now, or do they delay? At Claranet we know that although digital transformation can feel like a risky step to take, failing to transform is far riskier. Agility and flexibility are crucial for survival in a world of flux.
Embracing the cloud quickly: the move to cloud doesn’t have to be daunting
Cloud technology is a massive enabler; it can impact the way your end-to-end business works and can give you a significant competitive advantage. But it is important that companies understand that going “Cloud Native” does not have to mean rebuilding their business IT from the ground up in one go.
As well as fears that they won’t be able to manage the costs of an IT rescope, many companies face a capability gap, lacking the technological skills, design capabilities and understanding to carry out this process. For these reasons, many businesses are putting this strategy on hold whilst others are finding their projects taking years of time and investment with little or no progress.
But rather than painstakingly recreating their whole IT landscape before moving it over to the cloud piece by piece, companies can move at pace, taking some of that legacy forward with them to the cloud.
The “Lift and Shift” strategy has established a bad name as it can often mean businesses shift limitations and bad behaviours from one platform to another rather than resolve them. But there is a middle ground, the “Cloud Optimisation” approach. By taking this pragmatic approach, companies can make a significant change in a reasonable time frame. Cloud Optimisation allows businesses to take their legacy — optimised where it makes sense, adjusted where it’s easy to do — and, with a partner of experience, move to a cloud-based infrastructure. Then they can start modernising and optimising, equipped with the toolkit of services and skills available on the cloud — this is how you move fast and avoid getting stuck in failing multi-year IT projects.
Don’t rebuild your IT for the cloud, but take your legacy, optimised where it makes sense, adjusted where its easy to do, and with a partner of experience and scale move to a cloud based infrastructure first – and then take the advantage of cloud as you move forward in modernising and replacing your applications with true cloud native strategy – this is how you move fast and change and avoid getting stuck in failing multi-year IT projects.
Innovate and disrupt: companies that play it safe risk falling behind
In order to compete in such a turbulent environment, every business should be looking to disrupt within their industry, and this starts with the technology they use. In times of flux and rapid change, agility and flexibility are critical. The companies that thrive are those that are quick to embrace new technologies and offerings, execute ideas seamlessly and win the race to market. Cloud-based tech enables organisations to move, adapt and evolve so much faster.
As the “Cloud War” rages on, new capabilities and services are constantly being released to help businesses to get the ultimate value from the cloud platform. This rate of development cannot be matched by the internal IT function, and the longer companies wait to make the move, the more they are going to fall behind.
The future is uncertain, but in order to emerge from this period of adversity in as strong a position as possible, businesses must embrace disruptive technology and go cloud-native. Start how you mean to go on and be bold: find a good partner, build a compelling business case and use cloud as a launchpad for innovation.