Overcoming the crucial blockers during the move to the Cloud

By Dob Todorov, CEO & Chief Cloud Officer, HeleCloud

Last month, I had the honour of taking part in an AWS advisory video series, alongside the CEOs of Advice Cloud and Not Binary, entitled AWS Partners: Why Customers are Adopting the Cloud.

There were many great takeaways for UK businesses that came out of this discussion, particularly around the benefits of navigating the AWS Cloud Platform with a partner and why we are currently seeing an evolution in Cloud adoption. In this blog, I will summarise what I believe where the top three key learnings to overcoming crucial blockers during the move to the cloud.

1. Finding the right partners for Cloud adoption

The reality is digital transformation is now a matter of existence for all UK businesses. Those that transform today can become tomorrow’s leaders. Those that do not risk fading into the background as newer, more agile players enter the market with popular digital propositions. Most commonly this challenge rests firmly on the shoulders of two business leaders – the CEO and the CIO. The CEO needs to meet ambitious business objectives, which increasingly rely on the capabilities of digital technologies. The CIO is tasked with introducing those digital technologies and the environment, including skills, needed to make the most of them. This is no easy task.

Cloud computing is one of the core pillars of digital transformation. However, Cloud adoption continues to be both a priority and major challenge for UK businesses – particularly when it comes to selecting the right approach and ensuring data governance. To make things worse, Cloud skills are limited in the UK forcing CIOs to either hire mediocre talent now or wait twelve months until the right person is found. To overcome this, UK businesses are being forced to seek out specialist partners to become a business that delivers.

Thankfully, Public Cloud platforms like AWS have global partner programmes, which exist to help businesses leverage AWS to build the right solutions and services for their needs. Having programmes like this is a great help for the many business leaders still struggling to identify the right technology partners for Cloud adoption or even digital growth. With a programme like AWS Partner Network (APN), these same business leaders can easily select a partner with deep AWS expertise to support them at any and every stage of their Cloud adoption journey.

Of course, there are thousands of APN Partners across the globe, which can make selecting the ‘right’ partner a little more complex. Fortunately, AWS helps with “matchmaking” – advising businesses to seek support or work with certain partners to strengthen their businesses. HeleCloud, an advanced AWS partner, was fortunate to enough to go through this process and find a perfect match with OlinData. By acquiring OlinData, HeleCloud are able to establish a strong presence in the Benelux and further fuel our ambitions to be at the forefront of the Cloud services business in Europe.

2. Why security is becoming the reason to move to Cloud

In 2011, when I was working at AWS, the conversations with customers often revolved around Cloud security: “Is it really secure to move my applications to the Cloud?”. I also spent many hours discussing how a business could move its storage to the Cloud and the cost of running workloads in the Cloud. I am happy to say that this has all changed, other than the well-known benefits like cost efficiency, agility and scalability, security and compliance is one of the main reasons encouraging Cloud adoption.

This is also a priority for Cloud providers like AWS. Whilst they allow businesses to scale and innovate, this must be done within a secure environment. What is often forgotten amid tales of data breaches and leaks, is that AWS offers an unrivalled level of security for businesses – a level that can only be afforded by a much larger organisation with combined resources. This allows businesses that are not of this scale or revenue-driving ability to take advantage of AWS’ vast investment in security at a fraction of the price. AWS ensures the integration of emerging technologies such as AI to help with effective risk mitigation and automated incident response, through to complete transparency in access monitoring. This is certainly more rigorous than any business can setup alone.

3. Allowing for innovation without the cost

We speak a lot about the digital transformation of businesses. However, Cloud adoption doesn’t necessarily translate into radical ‘transformation’. Instead, it tends to lead businesses to a point where they are doing better business on a better platform for better results. Yet, as touched on above, what Cloud providers like AWS can enable is innovation through experimentation without the associated costs or risk, or at a much lower cost.

AWS invests vast amounts into the development of technologies such as voice recognition and artificial intelligence. The fact is today AI can be used anywhere large amounts of data are present for better decision making. This includes in central and local governments, enterprise to SMEs, healthcare to retail. UK businesses and organisations should be taking advantage of the benefits that AWS can provide. Moving past Cloud migration into true transformation.

Watch the full video with HeleCloud, Advice Cloud and Not Binary here: