It’s time to Think Cloud

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It’s time to Think Cloud

Having helped many customers make the journey to the public cloud over the last few years, it still surprises me how organisations treat the cloud like a place to put their “stuff”. Most customers are quite content moving their applications, infrastructure or data as-is and make that decision based on price and quality-of-service. A smaller set will embark on some refactoring and move their applications and services into the PaaS, SaaS or FaaS (Function-as-a-Service) layers. Cloud vendors can provide an incredible service for the price so there is nothing wrong with that approach. But surely, we can do better.

Most people think of the public cloud as renting vs buying. Minimal cost upfront without having the hassle of managing the property. Sounds like a great proposition. I however take the view that it is like living in a large resort and deciding “Where would I like to live next week?” Perhaps I need to throw a party or have the in-laws staying for 5 weeks or go on a holiday. My needs would be quite different. I may need a large house, or two houses or no house at all.

Perhaps the biggest opportunity is around how we innovate. Cloud vendors are continually updating their services (some weekly) with particularly amazing work being done recently around Machine Learning and Intelligence. A great example is the Microsoft Dynamics product suite which has – just within a couple of years – moved from being a set of related, but independent, products to a set of workloads built upon a shared, intelligent platform which unlocks immense opportunities for innovation and allows customers to differentiate their offerings and experiences. Unfortunately, many customers don’t take advantage of these innovations and their solutions either get dated quite quickly or are expensive to grow as much of the innovation is coming from within, not the service.

 Going back to my earlier point, we can do so much more and here are some ideas on how:

  1. Get operationally comfortable consuming what you need, when you need it.
  2. Understand the roadmap of the applications and services you are considering and build accordingly.
  3. Dedicate budget for periodic (quarterly or half-yearly) reviews and adoption of new functionality.
  4. Convince yourself that there is no such thing as ‘done’. New requirements do not stop just because the project has.
  5. Be bold. Capabilities like Machine Learning and IoT which were previously reserved for organisations with deep pockets have been democratised and, in case of many customers we have worked it, have been able to fundamentally transform their set of offerings.

Hope this gives you some ideas on how truly embrace the cloud in your organisation and go from just being in the cloud to thinking cloud.

We will be exploring each of these areas further in a series of blogs and would love your thoughts at

Amir Jafri

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