Hybrid Cloud Journey Success
Be patient, stay the course and you and your enterprise will reap benefits over time.
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While attending DataStax Accelerate 2019, I had the opportunity to hear Chelsea Navo, Global Vanguard Lead Engineer at DataStax, share her thoughts on what companies need to think about when making the journey to the hybrid cloud.
Three keys to consider when beginning the journey:
Learn from others
Ensure cross-functional teams that encompass development, operations, and security are in close communication and collaboration throughout the process from strategy to execution.
Develop your data management strategy in conjunction with your cloud strategy to avoid the accumulation of technical debt over time.
For the purpose of this discussion, the hybrid cloud is defined as a computing environment that incorporates infrastructure from multiple platforms and data centers.
To increase the opportunity for success, ensure you are pursuing integrated strategies that are aligned with the business initiatives. Understand the priorities of the business and the vision for transforming the business. A consistent desire for modernization and improving user experience are key drivers. Regardless, it will take teams working together toward a shared vision and goals. As you progress, identify storyteller champions who will cascade learning throughout the organization.
When moving to a hybrid cloud, here are the things you need to keep in mind regarding the data:
Portability across data centers and clouds is key.
Reduce data silos by integrating databases to enhance access.
Keep the system up and running 24/7 — resilience and availability is key, especially the more geographically distributed the enterprise is.
- Provide a 360-degree view of the application collaborate across development, operations, and security.
- Plan for capacity and growth, and prepare to be able to scale to meet demand.
Chelsea laid out a four-step journey and provided a large retail use case in which the client had evolved through the four phases over four years. Each phase comes with its own risks and rewards as outlined below:
Phase 1: Opportunistic
Companies looking to take advantage of the cloud will be rewarded with low costs; however, it will take a while to get there as they are just beginning to see how to move from projects to lines of business, to enterprise-wide initiatives. As you roll out to progressively larger groups, you will need to think about how this transition affects people and teams, app and data, as well as processes and governance.
Phase 2: Standardize
Progress will result in rapid application development but you will also the data silos creeping in. Focus on reducing ecosystem clutter, the number of apps you have, source of truth data integrations, and processes. Look at simplifying workflows and data flows, as well as your architecture. Start somewhere and iterate over time.
Phase 3: Rationalize
If you've been conscientious in phase 2, your reward will be fewer apps with more valuable data. However, more valuable data will create more data demands as the enterprise sees the results of your efforts. This is where you're beginning a never-ending loop of identifying needs, maintaining what you've built, iterating and innovating, evaluating > sharing knowledge. It's a virtuous cycle as you see “idea to production” speed increase, along with iterative delivery and learning. Communications, especially about new requirements is critically important.
Phase 4: Optimize
Once you're here, you'll be rewarded with both application and data agility with the risk, and benefit, of innovation pace, increasing by an order of magnitude. However, just because you're here, don't think the journey is over because it never is.
Hybrid Cloud Success Patterns
Integrated cloud + data management
Innovation to standard
Reduce ecosystem clutter
Communicate to eliminate the unnecessary
Be proactive and responsive
Start the journey and learn as you go through each step to get bigger rewards.
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