As the world evolves to deal with the changes brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, existing business operating models – from supply chains to distribution – are being redesigned to attain new levels of resilience, agility and productivity, as well as to secure end-user reach.
Underpinning this transition is cloud technology, which has become the critical enabler in reshaping the business ecosystem. This has been even more so in recent years, following the technology’s rapid evolution that has seen it becoming more reliable, scalable and flexible.
While cloud-based solutions were already in play before COVID-19, pandemic-induced acceleration has now also brought over the slow adopters and fence-sitters. Notably, Forrester Research expects the global cloud computing market size to grow from USD 371.4 billion in 2020 to USD 832.1 billion by 2025. Moreover, in 2021 alone, the global public cloud infrastructure market is estimated to grow by 35% to USD 120 billion.
Amdocs' 2020 Cloud Migration Trends Report offers a deep understanding of how enterprises have adjusted their cloud migration plans and investments in response to the pandemic’s impact on their businesses. It shows that 73% of India’s IT leaders plan to significantly increase their 2021 cloud budgets to make remote working more manageable and potentially permanent. Additionally, it shared that accelerated cloud migration plans have driven enterprises to focus on solving security (60%) and data (64%+) challenges.
Below is a simple cloud migration framework that can aid customers in systematically formulating their cloud migration plans.
Lift and shift
Using this approach, an organization can transition its entire legacy software from its data center into the cloud. This reduces the IT team’s concerns to a large extent in areas such as choosing which software or app to transform before the cloud migration, how it will be done, and whether the updated software will integrate into the cloud effectively.
Most legacy apps consume many computing resources and need to be replaced with a cloud-oriented version. Once this is done, it is essential to optimize cloud usage and increase cost-effectiveness. Cloud service providers offer services to update or transform these apps in bits and pieces, helping the businesses maintain costs and gain the flexibility to scale up or down based on their requirements.
Effectively operating in the cloud
One of the most fundamental elements of effectively working in the cloud space is FinOps, which refers to managing the financing elements of cloud consumption. FinOps entails ensuring the customer is using the optimum cloud level at any given time. For instance, during the holiday season, such as Diwali or Christmas, the company can scale up cloud usage by augmenting requisite resources and then releasing them when the peak is over. This is applicable even on a daily or weekly basis. Apps such as Amdocs’ Cloud FinOps – a real-time dashboard that provides information on the peaks and lows of cloud consumption –enables organizations to control their finances accordingly.
Upskilling and reskilling talent for cloud
With the fast adoption of cloud, upskilling and reskilling the organizational workforce to become cloud specialists is imperative. Organizations need to lay down well-planned strategies that offer a clear path to enhancing and developing their employees’ skillsets – whether to build cloud-native applications, test them in a cloud environment, operate them or maintain them. In this area, our survey revealed that 69% of Indian enterprises are already training employees on cloud-based data and analytics skills, while 77% of IT leaders based in the country say their organizations have plans to reskill employees on cloud services.
While these strategies offer an overall cloud migration action plan that can be adopted by most organizations, it’s important for CTOs and other decision-makers to evaluate their first steps based on their internal workings and the business’ IT requirements.
The numerous benefits of cloud migration can create a strong foundation for the organization’s agility and resiliency in the long run. These include enhanced data security, optimized scalability, reduced costs, smarter integrations, and easier access to business-critical functionality. It can be safely said that the cloud is indeed the future.