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Wednesday, 6 July 2016

48 Hours To Better Manage Cloud For Your Business - Part 3

Welcome to our 3rd blog post within our six part series on "48 Hours To Better Manage Cloud For Your Business" from!

We will outline an approach for Business leaders to follow so that they can better leverage cloud computing and maximize their investment.

The series of blog posts will discuss the following topics:

Part 4 - Pizza As A Service Cloud Analogy.

Part 5 - When is Cloud Computing Not A Fit For Your Business?

Part 6 - What is a Cloud Architect?

In this post we will discuss 9 common pitfalls, or problems, to avoid with cloud computing. Properly planning for cloud computing within your business requires that you do analysis before you even start to actively use any cloud services.  "What is the problem that we are trying to solve?" is the fundamental question that you need to ask within your business and if you are not prepared for that discussion then we recommend that you revisit your strategy toward cloud computing. 

  1. Acquiring cloud technology without understanding what business problem it will solve
    1. This is the most important question that you must be prepared to answer in order to maximize the benefits of cloud computing within your business.  You do not want cloud computing to simply be another technology within the ever growing toolbox of tools and business expenses.
  2. Popularity often determines a cloud solution choice, and runs the risk of the wrong cloud technology being applied
    1. Being able to communicate the problem and requirements that you are seeking to fulfil will enable you to have information to help compare comparable cloud service providers and their solutions. 
  3. Letting cloud computing create more silos and complexity
    1. Cloud computing is another capability for your business to use towards solving its business problems.  Every cloud service can be categorized into a specific need or a capability that it provides.  Make sure that your business does not create duplication within either the cloud services that it creates or consumes.
  4. Inability to create metrics to define the success of the cloud project
    1. Being able to measure the performance of your business is a key enabler for a mature business organization.  Identify what are the key success factors or key performance indicators that you want your business to achieve and then track therir progress.  When the metrics are showing that the performance is not as expected as set intervals then examine possible reasons why this may be true.
  5. Inability to locate the right cloud computing talent
    1. Expertise in cloud computing is a growing skill from both a Business and Technical skill set.  Make sure that you are able to actually manage your investments within cloud computing by either training your existing staff or having a sufficient pool of resources that can support your cloud service selection.
  6. Too much focus on the technology, and not enough on requirements
    1. Never pick the solution first before identifying the problem that your business is trying to solve.  Selecting the technology first can quickly turn into a problematic series of comprimises and skipping valid business requirements.  The analogy of a placing a square in a round peg hole holds true for cloud computing.
  7. Goals like improving business agility, scalability, and productivity are well-meaning but too vague to be measured in any meaningful way
    1. If you are having a challenge with identifying key business focused metrics to measure your progress with cloud computing and its benefits to your business then you should take a pause and revisit the objectives that you want to achieve.  Most teams want to track metrics related only to technology focused service level agreements, however you want to ensure that your business has its cloud planning and strategy rooted in business focused benefits.
  8. Another pitfall that cloud projects fall into is trying to go too big too fast instead of breaking the project into bite-sized pieces with realistic milestones
    1. Approaching your projects with an Agile methodology and continuous deployments anchored in DevOps provides your business with the continous monitoring of its progress toward realizing project requirements.  Cloud computing will transform all aspects of your business so it is recommended to phase in the changes that are required and the new capabilities that it will introduce.
  9. Without a clear understanding of how IT services are currently being utilized (how much, how often, and by whom), it’s almost impossible to plan a proper cloud strategy
    1. Cloud computing services can be seen as an additional service line that must be managed within your business.  Cloud services transform the view of traditional IT services management because of the greater involvement of business stakeholders.  It is important to have an understanding of your business demand for cloud services from a volume and utilization consideration, and it is also important to know what service types and capabilities are required.  Having your business understand these elements will only further the level of depth and maturity that can be applied within your cloud strategy.

If you would like to learn more then register for our upcoming online course "48 Hours To Better Manage Cloud For Your Business" from!

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