7 Points to Ponder When You Develop Your Cloud Strategy
Cloud is no longer an experiment. It’s now a core element of most business’s information technology architecture. That means you can’t focus on single deployments anymore; you need to develop a strategy that makes your clouds consistent and aligned with corporate strategy. Know your cloud objectives, whether competitive advantage or reduced costs, and then consider these issues as you design a strategic approach to cloud:
1. Cloud application architecture
For many businesses, the need to get to cloud meant taking a lift and shift approach to speed cloud deployments. However, lift and shift doesn’t always allow workloads to take full advantage of cloud capabilities. Conduct a strategic review of your deployed applications to determine where redesigning to cloud native makes sense, and make a plan for how you’ll make that decision for all future cloud development and deployment.
2. Cloud location (part one)
Cloud isn’t a single place. Cloud can mean public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud; new technology makes it simpler to build cloud-like infrastructure in your data center. Even the success of cloud deployments can mean rethinking cloud location—a small prototype that was cost-effective to trial in the cloud may become expensive as it grows in capacity. Repatriating applications from public cloud to the data center should be an option in your strategy.
3. Cloud location (part two)
Cloud isn’t a single place. Many businesses end up using more than one cloud vendor, either through choice or through shadow IT. Use tools to identify those shadow clouds to bring them under control. When you’re using multicloud as a strategy, you need to consider whether the benefits of getting the best technology each provider offers is outweighed by the difficulty of integrating and managing services in different locations.
4. Cloud isn’t for every application
It’s going to be a long time before every legacy application migrates to a cloud-based version. Some applications may never make that transition. Your strategy needs to include an approach for simultaneously managing both legacy on premises infrastructure and the modern cloud.
5. Cloud cost management
Cloud is cheap, but only if you take steps to manage it. Otherwise, unused cloud resources add up to ongoing expenses. Implementing tools that help you monitor and manage your cloud utilization and cloud expenditures is key.
6. Cloud security
Security considerations don’t go away with cloud, and your cloud strategy needs to incorporate a security strategy to protect your data, applications, and users wherever they reside.
7. Risk management
Cloud risks come in a number of forms, including cloud security breaches and cloud outages. In addition, cloud creates the risk of vendor lock-in, so make sure your cloud strategy includes developing methods to escape the cloud if necessary.