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Cloud Computing Workshop

Purpose

The purpose of this workshop is to identify applications best suited for moving to the cloud. There are multiple cloud delivery models, from the most mature Software as a Service model to Platform as a Service, which are still in their infancy.

The cloud business model benefits include; pay as you go, no upfront costs, and quick vendor response.
Additional business drivers for enterprises to consider cloud computing may include time to market and business agility. Selecting applications for cloud computing is less of a technical decision and more of a business decision. Below are couple steps of workshop process.

Process

Step 1: Identify best application to migrate by reviewing the types of applications in your enterprise. From the perspective of the enterprise business owner, applications could fall under:

  • Business infrastructure applications (generic): Email, VOIP, Instant Messaging, and Productivity applications. These are applications that every company needs and expect to work.
  • Business or “back-office” applications: ERP, CRM, Content and Knowledge management etc. These are key IT capabilities on which core business processes are built. These capabilities need to evolve with the business process, as enterprises identify and target new market opportunities.
  • Business “vertical” applications, supporting specific business processes for your industry type. For example, online stores, Catalogs, Back-end services, Product life-cycle support services.

The best candidates for migration are generic business infrastructure applications, which can be delivered via SaaS model. Cloud computing disciplines from least time to implement application to most time intensive are listed below.

  • SaaS
  • PaaS
  • IaaS
  • Private/Public Cloud

It is important to note that time to implement these disciplines are inversely proportional to flexibility.

Step 2: Identify SaaS delivery options and go to vendors for input.
Some challenges to investigate include:

  • Security - data encryption, digital signatures, and SLA’s?
  • Licensing - how does software vendor monitor number of licenses?
  • Manageability?

Deliverable

Build business justification. The long-term goal is enable organizations to focus on innovation and delivering value added business applications.