Operating the Cloud: the people and process questions

Cloud computing is a popular topic right now. Some see it as a saviour technology for cost cutting but there is too much thought given to how you will connect at a technical level with a Cloud service provider. Just as important is how you will connect at a process level and at a business level. IT development and solutions staff are prone to waving these considerations away as an issue for the operations people and the “suits”, but the process and business considerations are more important than the technical ones.

It is all too easy for IT to see a technical solution as a solution. The process, business and cultural problems are generally larger than any technical ones. For a whole bunch of ugly questions around operating the Cloud, see my recent article on ITSWatch.

As well as the ongoing operational issues of a Cloud platform that concern an ITIL audience, there are all sorts of people and process issues around application code migration, implementation, data migration, staff redundancies, training, or resistance; and a raft of other hurdles to be overcome to get there.

Operations ought to be a stakeholder in any considerations of “going Cloud”. Try to raise these operational issues early and raise them high, because developers and ex-technical managers are apt to see them as administrative concerns to be resolved after the decision is taken. See my recent article on Dead Cat Syndrome for discussion of the wider problem of development-operations disconnect. Get your senior managers to raise the business issues. Once these factors are in the equation, the benefits of a Cloud infrastructure might not seem so attractive nor the business case so compelling.


Operating the Cloud: the people and process questions

Great post which I shouted out in my blog www.ciorant.com. Technology aside, this is one set of disruptive technologies that will need management discipline to keep from becoming a destructive technology!

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