In the past, businesses would have to invest heavily in their own hardware and software infrastructure. This inflexible approach made it difficult to respond quickly to changing market conditions. Cloud computing has changed all that by providing a more agile and flexible way to build and deploy applications.
Joe Atkinson, the Chief Products & Technology Officer at PwC wrote this cloud computing article for Fortune in which he identifies agility as the primary reason organizations should adopt the cloud. The article doesn’t provide much proof to support the thesis, which isn’t surprising in that calculating the value associated with agility is very difficult. As a result, most companies take the easy way and instead calculate potential savings possible when outsourcing the IT physical infrastructure. However, when making cost savings on infrastructure the primary driver, companies often fail to invest and encourage agility in software development. But adopting agility is far from free. Many software development shops continue to code relatively monolithic software. To become agile developers must embrace modularity, if not microservices, which are enabled using APIs. The cost associated with becoming agile was in the back third of the article, and I can only say this doesn’t really do justice to the costs associated with going agile:
“It’s vital to align the growth of cloud infrastructure with the growth of the larger business and manage the two similarly. What does that look like? Leaders need to embrace new mental models, expand digital upskilling for relevant employees, and invest in the headcount to engage the services they’ve bought. Firms need to innovate faster, deploy low-code/no-code solutions, and leverage the cloud to create better experiences for their employees and customers.
That creates value in cloud services, which tightening market conditions will make even more critical. Efficient cloud usage can make the difference in retaining the very jobs responsible for managing that usage.
Of course, businesses should absolutely manage their cloud services just as they do other variable utilities and put processes in place to ensure they turn off what’s not being used, even if it served a past purpose. Just like you wouldn’t blast the HVAC at home while you were on vacation, unused cloud capacity is running up a bill.”
Overview by Tim Sloane, VP, Payments Innovation at Mercator Advisory Group.