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Cloud Readiness Assessment: An Essential Part Of Cloud Adoption

21 Apr 2020

By Paul Riddle

cloud-readiness-assessment-an-essential-part-of-cloud-adoption

Successful cloud adoption starts with the right foundation. In this series of blogs we look at why having a solid foundation is paramount for a successful cloud adoption.

Driven by the need for greater productivity and lower costs, organisations around the world are moving their workloads to the cloud. Pre-migration planning can be as important as the implementation work itself. A cloud readiness assessment can transform your rough idea of moving to the cloud into a detailed plan that explains how to make it happen and in what order events should occur.

Some of the common challenges that organisations hit when looking at Cloud Migration include:

  • A lack of understanding and clarity of cloud security and compliance best practices
  • A lack of a clearly defined business case for cloud migration
  • Insufficient planning and operational readiness

By undertaking a Cloud Readiness assessment there will be three outcomes that address these common challenges:

  • An understanding of where your organisation is in its cloud journey
  • Identified areas of strength and weakness from a cloud-readiness perspective
  • An action plan to resolve the identified gaps, so you can migrate at scale without having to pause to solve foundational issues.

In addition there are often these additional outcomes:

  • Alignment and consensus building within the team
  • Identification of best practices within the organisation that can be leveraged and scaled
  • A reduction in roadblocks that can disrupt progress.

So how should you look at Cloud Readiness and what are the steps to achieve this?

Understanding the Current State of the Cloud Journey

When organisations contemplate a migration to Cloud, they generally fall somewhere along the path of what is called the stages of adoption. The four stages — project, foundation, migration, and reinvention — are discussed in the blog post The Journey Toward Cloud-First & the Stages of Adoption on the AWS Cloud Enterprise Strategy blog. The purpose of a readiness assessment is to determine how far along in the stages of adoption your organisation is currently at, and which parts of your environment are sufficiently mature to move to the next stage.

Identifying Areas of Strength and Weakness

Identifying areas of strength and weakness is the second main outcome of a Cloud Readiness assessment. Strengths determine the teams and practices that are ready for broad adoption across your organisation. These are areas that don’t require further work to enable successful cloud migrations at scale. Weaknesses are areas where actions need to be taken to improve the practices or capabilities to enable cloud migrations.

Solving gaps early ensures a smooth migration process and eliminates the risk of project delays in building out foundational capabilities.

Creating an Action Plan to Enable Scale and Speed

After you identify strengths and weaknesses, you will need to put an action plan in place to close the gaps and scale identified areas of strength within your organisation. The plan should have assigned owners and due dates to ensure that the project drives forward. We recommend that you engage your internal process improvement and organisational change teams to help drive the cloud initiative forward. These teams usually have toolkits for baselining current capabilities, establishing communications, handling buy-in planning, and similar processes, which will be useful.

Summary

A Cloud Readiness assessment involves working through each of the common challenges whilst collecting the basic information required for each area. The final part of the assessment is to make some judgement calls by adding a time element to the analysis of the information collected. The time element will provide the ultimate answer about when you will be ready to continue with your cloud journey.

Some organisations will be ready to move on immediately, while others might need to spend a little more time on changes. A side benefit of performing a cloud readiness assessment comes from the exposure to the whole organisation that you are considering the move to cloud.

The time spent performing a cloud readiness assessment at the front of your cloud journey will be some of the most valuable time spent on your journey.

AltoStack can help with your cloud readiness assessment and provide objective clarity of the steps required to securely architect, migrate, deploy and budget for your IT workloads. Please contact us here.

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