Transforming the IT Department to be Cloud Ready

We started off this 3-part blog series by asking ourselves– what’s the reason(s) why we’re moving to the cloud? Basically, arguing that each business should determine, as a first step, whether it’s being motivated by a business driver (growth, efficiency and customer experience) and/or technology driver (agility, cost and assurance) in its move to the cloud. For more please refer to the full blog post here.

This past week we sort to ask ourselves—what are the strategies and approaches one can take towards adopting a cloud first strategy. And here I defined what cloud first strategy is and outlined the 4 steps to take towards a cloud first strategy. Again, I’ll indulge you to revisit last week’s blog post for more information.

In this 3rd and final post of this blog series I’ll seek to answer the question—how can we transform the current IT department to be cloud ready? What skills/competencies, roles and teams are needed to best support the business in the move to the cloud?

Cloud Computing presents both challenges and opportunities. To effectively address these challenges and take advantage of the opportunities we need to examine how the IT department is currently structured and resourced.

For IT to evolve and transform to be an enabler, simplifying and accelerating the business’ adoption of cloud based solutions, it needs to acquire new skills and define new roles. As outlined in the 2015 EDUCASE study these new roles can be roughly organized into 4 categories: Business, Vendor-Management, Technical and Data Functions. This includes:

Business Roles

  1. Business Analyst
  2. IT Liaison
  3. Product Manager
  4. Project Manager

Vendor- Management Roles

  1. IT Strategic Sourcing Manager
  2. Vendor Manager

Technical Roles

  1. Application Administrator
  2. Cloud Architect
  3. Emerging Technologies Analyst
  4. Integration Specialist

Data Roles

  1. Data Custodian
  2. Information Security Analyst

The above can be adapted to suit your own unique environment, for example, by having one person taking up multiple roles and in some cases either outsourcing the roles or eliminating them altogether. You’ll need to examine what make sense to you.

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