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Cloud readiness assessment

OnX recently completed a Cloud Readiness Assessment for clients in both Eastern and Western Canada, and the similarities were striking. Both organizations had made the move several years ago to hosting equipment with a data center provider to save money, and both had realized some savings. They are also both nearing the end of equipment leases on this first generation investment, and are considering options for either extending leases and maintenance for another year to figure out their strategy, and/or doing a wholesale change-out of their environment. The most interesting piece, however, is that as both organizations are now trying to leverage the power of cloud computing to allow them to meet their growth objectives, and are trying to understand what the path to cloud looks like for them. In short, does moving to cloud mean a wholesale change in approach, or an incremental one?

After completing our Discovery Workshop, the answer is “yes”. The technology environments of both customers already have the baseline building blocks for developing a private cloud; virtualization and abstraction technologies in place to separate the Service of IT from traditional IT Services. As a result, the change to cloud is an incremental one from an infrastructure and applications perspective. However, the other two aspects of a truly virtualized environment, specifically the IT Business Processes and Financial Models to support IT are going to require a wholesale change in approach; moving to an organizational structure and services model which allows for charge-back or show-back of IT utilization, and a service availability focus instead of an application availability focus.

The single largest surprise for both customers is that they are already over half-way there, but while their questions have been focused on the technology, the real challenge is in the business side of the equation; how you structure the organization to support this new cloud model. The good news is that both organizations now have a road map in place to help them move forward to a true cloud-based service delivery model.

Do you know if you are ready for the Cloud?

Steve Harris, CTO-Canada, OnX