How CIOs bring structure to the cloud

Cloud IT decision-makers will let off steam afterwards.
CIOs bring structure to the cloud

The advantage of the cloud - easier and faster roll-out - can be to the disadvantage if the solution is to go into regular operation. A webcast of the Computerwoche explains what IT decision-makers can do. Frank Beckereit, Senior Manager Consulting Services at NTT Germany, shows how Cios develop a comprehensive cloud management strategy.

How CIOs can maintain cloud control

Specialist journalist Simone Ciganek from Computerwoche moderates the webcast."How did you experience this time of crisis at NTT?" Beckereit smiles: "We had a very challenging time!" In concrete terms, this means that many companies had a "Nucleus" at home office places, but were not able to provide for the entire workforce. "Solutions relating to collaboration, video, or document sharing had to be introduced as quickly as possible, something that overwhelmed some decision-makers." "Many companies didn’t even have enough laptops," says Beckereit. With all the on-premise hosted applications, awareness of the lack of bandwidths and firewalls grew rapidly." "So we went into the cloud on an ad hoc basis - but this also means an increase in costs and risks," the expert says. Some decision-makers have followed the motto: "It has to work! We will take care of the dangers later."

Cloud Considerations: What CIOs Need to Know - Health

What Beckereit has now seen on the market is confirmed by a survey of webcast viewers. In the first days of the shut-down, they experienced the following difficulties: uncertainty about concrete needs and bottlenecks in the infrastructure (50 percent of the entries each), no concept for homework and uncertainty about the best collaboration solution (29 percent each) and the absence of an emergency plan (14 percent). With one thing added: in the case of an "emergency", companies have usually thought of a fire or failures, but not of a pandemic.

Proceed in six steps

What is the best way to continue from here? Beckereit sees a parallel to the time after the year 2000. "Technicians usually know what to do," he says, "The management doesn’t necessarily work!" Planning, documenting, making things properly sustainable - all this must now be made up for. Because one thing is emerging: knowledge workers in particular have learned to appreciate the home office and will demand it even after the crisis.

Beckereit recommends the following six steps: First, decision-makers need a "clear picture of the situation". Secondly, they must observe how the employees work with the tools and thirdly check whether they can get more out of the tools - that is, use more functionalities - and whether the built-in security works. The fourth step is analysis, result and decision, followed by the transformation (step five). The result is a new strategic operating model (step six).

This new operating model revolves around a core: "Services that just work", which again comprises six elements, first of all architect.ure/security. Those who want to create secure architectures should ask themselves the following questions: What was good before the crisis, what was bad? What has changed? What went well during the crisis, what did go badly? What insights do we come to? What strategic changes are derived from this?

The second element is Operations 

Management."I also need monitoring tools, "emphasises Beckereit." "Skills is a huge topic," says the expert, who believes it is inevitable to introduce automation." "See that you consolidate platforms and make the integration aspect the central aspect," he advises. The fourth element revolves around integration, and new services must be added to the service catalog. This also includes understanding the functionalities, some of which are updated daily.

Point five is the sensitive issue of spend management. Decision-makers must really understand the pricing models and bring IT budget and cost allocation up to date. Network traffic can turn out to be "huge amount of the bill"." "At variable costs, the CFO has a heart attack," sighs Beckereit. Ideally, everyone gets the job they need in their role."And that often didn’t happen in the crisis, "the expert warns.

Lack of time and uncertainty about further development

Another survey shows that the need for support is high: 75 percent of webcast viewers currently complain "too little time". Almost as many (67 percent) are not clear at the moment how the development will continue. In addition, 42 percent each speak of both budget difficulties and too little knowledge about the new solutions.

Beckeready’s most important messages in this situation are: "Take the chance! What else should you do?" "Decision-makers must now prepare their company for the future - and work with experts, where a spectator speaks up." "How do I find the right partner?" he wants to know. Beckereit recommends identifying your strengths and wondering whether you can cover what is new. But above all, the decision-maker must know what he wants to do beforehand.Beckereit: "Planning properly beforehand helps to save money afterwards!"

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