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Cloud Center of Excellence & Cloud adoption

Vikas Kumar
May 6, 2021

Are you facing challenges in increasing cloud adoption within the company? Are you satisfied with the cost & forecast of your cloud consumption? Find out how you can excel in managing Cloud to drive business efficiency!

A flexible, cost-effective, and innovative business is a common goal for  companies and organizations today & moving to the cloud is one of the concrete ways to achieve those goals. Often, organizations come up with a cloud strategy to align with organizational goals. However, with the availability of several providers and numerous solutions it often gets difficult for companies to decide on the “what & how” resulting in over proportioned cloud resources and financial spills.

This is where a Cloud Centre of Excellence (CoE) comes into play. Wondering what a Cloud CoEis & why  it should matter to you.

A Cloud CoE is your point of departure into the journey with Cloud!

Cloud center of Excellence, Cloud competence Center, Cloud office: you may give it any name but the expectation from it is the same towards the organization. It is the team responsible for developing a framework for cloud operations, governing the IT infrastructure, and building best practices throughout the business.

It is often confused with a set of cloud architects, commonly seen in many organizations. But in all honesty, it is a cross functional team governing and supporting cloud adoption in the organization.

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Why Cloud CoE?

Have you ever driven in an unknown terrain without a navigator? You might not get lost but reaching the destination would never be easy.

The Cloud Office is your navigator who can help you achieve the business aligned goals defined in your Cloud strategy. In other words, it’s the “torch bearer” or “the light house” of your organization’s cloud adoption journey.

Still unsure where you stand in terms of Cloud adoption? Try answering the questions below, which are quite valuable for your business.

  • How to govern the cost in cloud and handle forecast?
  • How to increase cloud adoption within the organization?
  • How to keep up with the rate of change being introduced by the cloud providers?
  • How to drive transformation for the business and reap the possibilities enabled by cloud?
  • How do we manage & mitigate security and compliance needs while ensuring agility?

If you’re looking for answers to any of the above questions, Cloud CoE is your answer.

So, what all can a Cloud CoE help you do? It can

  • Promote and structure ways of working and standardized processes to enable repeatable success in cloud adoption
  • Create a focal point of the company responsible for investigating and understanding new and emerging technologies and to solve non-project specific challenges that other operations can benefit from
  • Provide access to your structural capital, tools, processes, and expertise to make your Cloud projects successful
  • Provide your teams with the knowledge and expertise to solve specific problems related to development and deployment
  • Govern and monitor the cloud consumption for financial and security related requirements.

Implementing Cloud CoE

The rule of one size doesn’t fit all is what truly applies when defining how to implement CoE. There could be several approaches to take the path, however the underlying basis for taking those paths are driven by:

  1. Ideation: Based on your cloud strategy, the first step should be to assess the current state and build the gap analysis of where you want to be. This shall further help define roles / skills currently available within your organization and further required to achieve those strategic goals. The planning should be able to answer the following:
    • Who should be involved in the CCoE?
    • What are the strategic outcomes we’re trying to achieve with our CoE?
    • Where are we today from a maturity perspective, and where do we want to be?
  2. Realization: Once you have answers to the above questions, the next obvious step is to define responsibilities. The build should revolve around:-
    • Governance: Defining & implementing the policies
    • Security: Defining & implementing the legal and organizational compliance requirements
    • Platform: covering the Architectural design and adapting new emerging services
    • People:Ensuring ways of working and emphasizing of increased adoption through cultural change

     All the above should be driven by the cloud strategy of the organization

  1. The journey: The last but not the least factor is how you operate. With newer ways of working, Cloud CoE needs to ensure different methodology to operate emphasizing on: –
    • Collaborate: Cloud adoption needs to be cross organizational effort involving different streams like finance, business, security hence the Cloud CoE needs to act as a bridge connecting all the dots.
    • Define KPI’s: Each company might implement different KPI’s but in principle it should be able to answer one question. “how can we measure the outcome of this transformation and how can we measure the efficiency in the way we utilize cloud?”
    • Monitor: Is it even possible to achieve the goals without having adequate visibility is what you are operating?
    • Empower: The Cloud CoE shall have executive sponsorship to bring in new & innovative ideas without the fear of anything. This disruptive approach can spearhead the road of success

Common pitfalls

While we have understood the benefits and how to implement Cloud CoE, it shall be of interest to go through the darker side of coin.

It’s often seen that without understanding the deeper and wider role of a CoE in cloud adoption, organizations often hire a team of cloud architects and name it the cloud office. It is of extreme essence that this should be a cross functional unit that collaborates across all others streams within the organization with the single motive of increasing cloud adoption. It should cater to the different requirements from different organizational units with skills, process, ideas, tools, and lead by joining hands in their initial steps of cloud adoption.

Your technology leadership can be defined through the journey: right from the vision to adopt cloud to how you help the people of your organization embark on that vision.

We can help you in your journey!

Today, Cloud is the foundation for agility, which enables to accelerate the pace of innovation and opens new avenues of optimizing the organizational value chain in order to generate profit and growth. An efficient Cloud center of excellence is, therefore, the backbone for succeeding in the digital transformation journey and achieve business goals in order to win the race.

We, at Capgemini, understand the needs and challenges you face during your Cloud Journey. Our deep expertise and experience in cloud is designed to fit all your needs and helps you take this leap of faith with us.

Are you looking for assistance to enhance your cloud adoption? Get in touch with me and we can take the discussion forward.

Published by: Vikas Kumar
Cloud Advisor, Capgemini Sweden
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