Our three core pillars are application managed services, cloud strategy and technology projects. Last week we dove into the first of those to explain what the term ‘application managed services’ actually means. Here we do the same for theICEway’s second pillar, with 'cloud strategy explained'.
What Is A Cloud Strategy?
Before we can define what a cloud strategy is, we must first understand what we mean by ‘cloud’. Otherwise known as ‘cloud computing’, it is a technology that allows users to access computing resources via the internet. In other words, the cloud is a network of remote servers and data centres that provide computing services on-demand. Users do not need to own or maintain physical hardware, instead accessing the services in return for a fee.
In business, the cloud has become essential to modern organisations. This is because it offers them numerous benefits. These include scalability, flexibility and better security and backup capabilities. The cloud allows organisations to generate improved collaboration and leads to more efficiency. In contrast to more traditional IT models, it also enables them to leverage the latest technology without the need for infrastructure investments or large upfront costs. The cloud offers organisations the ability to adopt ‘pay-as-you-go’ models, only paying for resources used. With all this in mind, it is no wonder then that a robust cloud strategy is a must when looking to transition to the cloud.
A cloud strategy is essentially a plan defining how organisations will use cloud computing to achieve business objectives. The strategy must align with the overall business strategy. Factors such as budget, security requirements, compliance and data governance should be taken into consideration. Any long-term goals an organisation has in place should also be kept in mind, as cloud computing needs to support them.
Forming A Cloud Strategy
A cloud strategy typically involves the following steps:- Assessing the current IT infrastructure
- Then identifying workloads which are suitable for cloud migration
- Choosing the appropriate cloud service models (i.e., SaaS, PaaS, IaaS*)
- Selecting deployment models for each workload (i.e., Public, private, hybrid)
- Establishing governance and compliance policies for cloud usage (including security, privacy and regulatory requirements)
- Developing a roadmap for cloud migration (including timelines, budget and the resources required)
- Building and implementing the cloud infrastructure (this includes selecting the appropriate cloud service providers and vendors)
- Monitoring and optimising the cloud environment (this is on going)
*Saas = Software as a Service; PaaS = Platform as a Service; IaaS = Infrastructure as a Service.
In ‘Cloud strategy explained’, we have attempted to simplify what this type of strategy is whilst pointing out why you need one. Leveraging cloud computing can seriously improve an organisation’s efficiency, scalability and innovation. Perhaps more importantly, it can also reduce costs and enhance security.
Do you need help with the cloud? Our IT experts are ready to help, simply contact us with your requirements today.