Blog: Cloud

Cloud Maturity Assessments: How to Know Where You Stand

July 5, 2021 - by Synoptek

Adopting cloud technology has become an indispensable part of modern organizations, which solution best suits your environment depends on your enterprise – factors such as industry, risk tolerance, and preparedness greatly influence cloud deployment and the technologies you need. This blog will discuss how you can determine where your company stands in terms of cloud adoption using Forrester’s cloud maturity assessment.

Your infrastructure and operations (I&O) experts can then use the insights from this assessment to determine the fundamental competencies they need to build to make cloud adoption successful. Keep reading to learn more about how to determine where you stand on the cloud maturity ladder.

Questions to Ask Yourself Around Cloud Maturity

A cloud maturity assessment can help you focus on understanding your current gaps and developing technologies and skill sets for better outcomes. Here are some questions you need to ask yourself against three critical cloud ecosystem skills:

1. People

  • Are business technologies a top priority for the executive team across the corporation, especially when supporting new initiatives like cloud computing?
  • Do you have a world-class cloud technology training and career development program in place?
  • Do you have significant cloud experience and cloud-related capabilities?
  • Is the focus of your IT leaders moving away from cost-cutting and towards innovation, improved customer experience, and faster time to market?
  • Are you able to adapt goals to encourage change and embrace customer experience and corporate communication?
  • Are there initiatives to transform the development process to solve problems to boost productivity, improve performance, and reduce error or redundant labor?

2. Process

  • Do you have a thorough knowledge of cloud platforms and apps?
  • Do you have a process in place that’s standardized, mechanized, and structured in such a way that bandwidth is not a constraint?
  • Do you have prior vendor management experience in the IT industry?
  • Have your processes and policies been standardized and simplified to the point that they are virtually completed efficiently and consistently?

3. Technology

  • Have you upgraded networking architecture to boost capacity and implement new technologies such as software-defined networking (SDN)?
  • Have your DevOps and digital transformation journeys started, and where do you currently stand on these paths?
  • Have you completed an application portfolio assessment for your ecosystem?
  • Have you taken note of the architectural details of all the applications in your portfolio?
  • Are your systems for version control, dev/prod consistency, immutability, automation, autoscaling, and declarative configuration management emphasized in the team’s cloud-native application architecture plan?

The Different Levels of Cloud Maturity

Asking the questions above will help you determine where you are now, and the different levels of cloud maturity will help you understand where you need to go. Let’s look at the various levels:

Beginner Level

If you are at the beginner level, consider partnering with a consulting or managed services provider to help you accelerate your cloud journey. Remember that some aspects of organizational change are more difficult to outsource when choosing between services and technological automation.

Intermediate Level

If you determine that you’ve progressed but need to put a more holistic effort before launching a successful cloud strategy, you should commit more time and resources to help improve maturity across people, processes, and technology. You could choose to add or remove agenda items that have an influence on the budget rather than on the employee or customer experience.

Advanced Level

If you have answered most questions in a ‘yes,’ you need to move to the next phase of maturity – ‘continuous improvement’. Continuous Improvement entails a thorough revaluation to cut costs, scale-up high-value initiatives, and examine current assumptions regularly. You might be able to start a conversation with technological peers outside your field that will push you beyond the general market.

So, What’s Your Next Step Now?

Now that you know where you stand, before going on to various steps toward better cloud success, you should consider these three points before coming up with any strategy:

1. Understand why you’re interested in cloud computing

Start by creating attainable targets for your cloud strategy, build consensus, and figure out how you’ll know if you’re on track. Vague assertions about industry direction or disruption aren’t enough to overcome investment barriers, and they won’t assure an agreed roadmap and execution plan among the many stakeholders.

2. Maintain a cautious and measured approach

Individual career paths may benefit from an excessively enthusiastic approach to the cloud, but it isn’t necessarily the ideal solution for a company. When pushing for a measured approach, be careful not to come across as defensive, risk-averse, or behind the times to your stakeholders.

3. Recognize that the cloud isn’t a single technology and prepare for the differences

Ensure you constantly consider this diversity and use the appropriate cloud model for the job. It’s possible that the best ‘cloud’ model isn’t even a cloud at all. Avoid cloud stereotypes by being precise about technological categories.

Final Thoughts

With every organization today looking to invest in cloud technology, there is sufficient mayhem in the adoption world. But cloud adoption isn’t just about moving a few workloads into the cloud or investing in cloud-enabled applications. For a successful journey, organizations must take time to understand the different cloud maturity levels, where they currently lie in the cloud maturity model, what their challenges are, and what steps they need to take to advance to the next level.

Following these steps can help you assess your current cloud maturity level and ensure you drive efforts in the right direction for optimum results.

Cloud Computing: One Size Does Not Fit All

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