Cloud continues to be the essential destination of modern workloads. 80%¹ of enterprises are already running workloads in the cloud. Executives have moved past the all-eggs-in-one-basket approach and embraced the best-2-of-the-top-4 strategy. This enables the flexibility to place the right workload on the right platform at a given moment in time. In other words, executives are embracing a hybrid-cloud configuration to get the best out of each platform.

Cloud adoption for advanced workloads, particularly data analytics and data science, increased 25%² over the last 12 months. Business benefits include enhanced analytics and reporting (54% of organizations), better data integration (44%) and expanding data science using AI/ML (44%). Interestingly, a mere 40% of organizations reported moving existing, on-premises workloads to the cloud.

The trend of cloud migration for new workloads is not surprising. Large organizations do have substantial value in legacy applications. But that value is trapped because those legacy applications were not designed and built for the cloud. To unlock the value of the cloud, you have to transform the applications to operate cloud natively. Here’s the catch. Your applications have numerous dependencies, points of integration and shared data sources. Transforming applications for the cloud is inherently complex, requiring re-architecting and re-engineering. The effort rapidly reaches a point of diminishing returns on investment without delivering any new business functionality. or fundamental architectural barriers. Plainly said, a forklift cloud migration of most existing applications will cost more than it’s worth. That’s why SaaS adoption is a far more popular approach for migrating existing workloads to the cloud.

The power of cloud platforms

Cloud-native platforms offer a number of attractive characteristics:

They are designed to be evergreen. Every part of the platform – from roadmaps to R&D budgets to the software engineering disciplines and tool chain – is designed to deliver a continuous wave of future upgrades and enhancements. They also address the evolving threat landscape.

They enable customization without manual effort. The term is Software Defined Infrastructure. Cloud technology stacks can be managed as code – with scripts and digital recipes – and through a wide range of configuration options and parameters. Even policy can be entered in machine-readable forms or rule sets for rapid implementation.

They are embedded in robust innovation networks. You get the benefit of participating as the larger ecosystem develops new best practices. When you work at scale, you learn at scale. Plus the sheer scale of consumption combines with market forces to drive rapid development of new services.

They enable you to short-cut the traditional IT development cycle. New capacity can be deployed in seconds rather than months.

They operationalize governance through automation, not approvals. Traditional approval processes revolve around periodic releases. Cloud-native platforms use automation instead: automation of testing; automated embedding of security controls; automation of infrastructure provisioning through templates.

They are self-configuring and self-healing, reducing the interruptions to data flows. Their machine learning also adapts internal workflows and external services to the experience of customers.

They include the latest techniques and technologies: APIs, analytics, AI, machine learning, cheaper processing, edge computing and self-service, and (critically) a switched-on platform team. Subscribing enables any organization to perform like a leading software company.

IT teams can invest their time in configuring cloud components, instead of stitching together the plumbing. Hybrid cloud adoption delivers the flexibility to experiment and scale in the back office, while offering citizens digital access to customized services in the front office. The result is solutions that deliver higher performance in mission support, and do it faster than forklift cloud migration.

ProTips

  1. invest in cloud training and certification so your tech staff recognizes that their professional future is tied to hybrid cloud
  2. adopt DevSecOps in the cloud to meet future high-value/high-risk requirements with cloud-native building blocks
  3. migrate core transaction processing systems by adopting SaaS, not through forklift moves
  4. dispose of your on-premise IT assets (hardware, data centers and investment in legacy applications); burning the boats makes it clear to everyone there is no turning back

To learn more about cloud migration, check out our blog: There is a right way to migrate to the cloud.

¹Denodo Global Cloud Survey 2021
²Ibid

Michael Conlin

Michael Conlin​

Chief Technology Officer​
Phone: (703) 216-5856​
michael.conlin@definitivelogic.com​