Cloud Crunch
Cloud Crunch

Episode · 1 year ago

S2E08: CXO Considerations: Moving to the Cloud for the Right Reasons


When you’re considering moving to the cloud, it's important to take a personal examination of your goals for migrating, outside of the basic benefits achievable with the cloud. To maximize the value of the cloud, you have to make sure you’re moving for the right reasons. Today we discuss just that with our very own 2nd Watch CEO, Doug Schneider.

...involve Solve, evolve. Welcome to cloud Crunch The podcast for any large enterprise planning on moving to or is in the midst of moving to the cloud hosted by the cloud computing experts from Second Watch, Ian will be chief architect Cloud Solutions and Skip Very executive director of Cloud Enablement. And now, here are your hosts of Cloud Crunch. Welcome back to Clap Crunch. I'm joined today with my co host Skip. Very Welcome back, Skip. Hey, thanks for having me again. In excited. Yeah, absolutely. This is great. I gotta be honest with you. I'm very excited about this episode for many reasons, and you'll figure out why in a second, most people today are familiar with the basic benefit achievable by moving to the cloud. Of course we are. That's what we talk about all the time. Scalability to faster speed to market and cost savings to just some of the items that we talk about frequently. But when you're considering moving to the cloud, you should really take a personal examination of your goals for migrating. Are you trying to drive innovation, save money? Or is it something your boss just told you to dio? If that's the case. You should probably do it to maximize the value of the cloud. You have to make sure you're moving fast for the right reasons. Today we have our very own second Watch CEO, Doug Schneider, on the podcast with us to talk just about that. Welcome, Doug to our show. Thank you in. Hello, Skip. Hello. Nice to spend time. So if you guys and I will not pull the boss card on you and tell you what to dio e way were ready to migrate dog way, it Zaveri Valid point. We're going to get into that because often way joke about that the intro here. But we've heard that before. And, you know, it's and and we we try to challenge that thinking. So today, what we're gonna do is kind of get into a discussion about the things that Doug you're seeing out there. And then what kind of balance? That with Skip and I a little bit more of the tactical in the trenches, day to day type stuff. So, you know, we're excited about this, So maybe Yeah, I was gonna say in just a good way to start because Doug sees a lot of our customers again from the the sea level. What have you and Doug maybe share with our guests? What you see from the drivers, really where we are today in the state would be helpful for our listeners to hear your e. Appreciate that. I was actually speaking with CTO, one of our large clients a couple of weeks ago, and and it was interesting in the conversation because they've been a longstanding client for a couple years. And while we've helped them, you know, in things like migrations in their journey, there's a growing recognition that sometimes the word migration or the bird transformation seems like, you know, just to start in a stock point or destination. A lot of people are recognizing that it's actually you know more about getting into some different form of a continuous motion as a business. Um, that's really fueled by this new, you know, operating paradigm of digital transformation with the public. Cloud ultimately is really being the operating system to build your business on, you know, to get the outcomes that you're looking for. The other interesting thing about, you know, thinking about outcomes that folks are looking for, You know, you hear this more and more again, it's about speed and flexibility and agility. I like to use the word sometimes flexibility because you could go really fast down a one way street super fast. That's great. But you need to add into that the flexibility and the agility toe actually adapt with a lot of the risks that are occurring on in the world. And that's actually what people are starting to recognize. The pandemic kind of opened up that view where people are starting to appreciate that...

...they weren't necessarily prepared to deal with the unknowns, Okay, But those that had been further in their cloud journeys and we're already starting to get into this continuous motion in some senses transformation. They were actually able to adapt better and continued to run faster. The last thing I'll just kind of end on it was very interesting. If, you know, we just sort of reinvents going on right now. Obviously, the annual show with AWS and Andy Jassy always does a phenomenal job, this keynote and he spent a lot of time talking about kind of these core things that businesses, you know, these attributes that businesses really need to take on and the big big one. He talked about quite a bit, emphasized with speed and then need to go fast. And I think people are feeling that Mawr and Mawr now because of you know whether it's the competitive environment, whether it's a macro economic environment where it's a political environment or something completely out of your control. Yeah, very interesting. And it rings true. Even eso those of the conversations you're having at your level and I'll say Ian's level in the pretty little side and me and the delivery side It all rings true as's faras the transformation aspect of it. You know, what are some of the struggles, challenges, opportunities there that will say the C suite is dealing with. And how do we I guess, you know, help our listeners look at some of these things that are, you know, give him confidence that the day old problem that has always been there. Yeah, I think the C suite has a greater appreciation for both. Not just the imperative. Okay, Thio, start saying Hey, we got it. Go tell that guy to get us to the public cloud, right? I think there's, you know, there's that imperative that still there. But I think there's a greater appreciation about, you know, how do you think about being successful and that there is this aspect of, you know, the technology, Ultimately, in some ways is the easy part of the equation, and the people in the process is, as we all know, that's that's where a lot of your risk comes in the play, right? And if you think about you know what, How you think about both strategy and tactics, you may have a great strategy, right, and you may have that strategy, right? But if you're execution is poor, you know, then you still haven't succeeded. And I think there's a greater appreciation that when you think about you know, the execution side of it in the tactic sides, the process side and the people side people are recognizing arm or um or important. The other thing that I think is interesting too, is and this was just ah report came out from four or 51 research recently on this issue of skills and people, and and it was basically called out. I think the data point was, is that 85% of enterprises have deficits in cloud expertise. And if you looked at the top three years, where those deficits where it was, cloud platforms cloud native engineering, insecurity. And so you see that there's this understanding of how important those are in the execution. But there's also a recognition of the gap from the people's skill standpoint, right? So drilling into that further, you're talking to different executives out there. And obviously we're in the cloud. I would say we're cloud, so it's a little different for us. But the counterparts out there, how are they going about trying to evangelize or solve those people problems? Because often we see this right? It starts. It appears to be a technical challenge. Yeah, but when you dig into the why, why, why he find out it's people challenge. Yeah, well, it's interesting, I think, how some people have approached it. And some, I think that recognized this a couple years ago leaned into it in terms of saying, How do we actually, as an I T. Organization reinvent ourselves a little bit...

...culturally so we can attract the type of talent that maybe is, you know, hasn't lived in the traditional world as much, but it's been born in the cloud more, and it is really looking for certain things. You know, that they want to do in terms of how they operate outside of the company, because what we know is, you know, if you take someone who's been in a traditional I T business, you know for decades and someone who's just kind of arriving into the world coming out more from a born in the cloud, software oriented and services on demand mindset, the way they wanna work and the things they want to do are very different. And so some people have recognized that we actually have to just set ourselves up toe, almost look more like a start up in a way right and create some of that environment. And we've seen that some of our clients do some really great things to do that, to attract the right people. So that's one thing. But it's also then this notion where we see it today with our customers, where there often looking at someone like this, which is saying, Hey, don't come in here and just kind of do it for me I need you to do it with me, and you need to kind of work alongside my people so and that and And we embrace that because we're big believers, that our job is to empower our enterprises to help him adopt leverage and optimize the cloud. So we embrace that. That's another thing that we see going on. It's harder. Some do, obviously in that effort try to spend, you know, repurpose and invest in their employees, and that can be successful to a degree. But I don't think it's just one thing. It's a combination of things, e. I think reinvent this year had some very interesting business focused keynotes, I believe. And I just have a couple of points that they made up here in my notes talent that is hungry to invent. We think we definitely would agree with that. I love the one is acknowledgement that you can't fight gravity. Andi, I think the reality is this. This cloud or digital transformation is a freight train coming at a lot of people that probably terrified of it. And yeah, and I do like their model is Well, Skippy talked about doing it with him. Yeah, you know, I think we have to up skill, everybody, the whole workforce. You think this is an interesting point because I think there's also Here's where I think organizationally there's There's broader understanding to is. Often when people talk about the cloud, they just think about it from a technical dimension. We're operating dimension, and the reality is the cloud is a whole new kind of again consumption based model. And so there's this whole financial dimension to that people are trying to adapt to and figure out. And I think what we've all recognized in our business with our clients and the way we've approached it. We've always looked at those three things the financial, the technically operating dimension as highly dynamic and very interrelated. And you've got to kind of think about your transformation along those three dimensions to yeah, good, good drivers all around there. How about some of the problems that you mitigate once you get there? Let's talk about that right? So we're trying to give confidence to the C suite and, you know, down my level where I'm in the trenches every day with delivering this, you know it's a battle, but from your perspective, Doug. You know, what's the what's the convincing argument of the talk track around the problems, you know, migrating to the cloud once you're there that we solve. Really? At the end of the day, if you if you think about it from a executive level for C suite, Yeah, so a couple things one, You know, I'd say there's a broad category of just how are you helping me mitigate risk is I continue to kind of pursue these outcomes I'm looking for in my business and and some of that risk mitigation help start getting at solving problems that you used to have before eso. Some of those problems...

...could be things like, How are you? Quickly scaling your resource is to deal with increasing demand that might be unexpected if you start to have some success with a particular application or how you actually really dealing with Hey, my budget is fixed, but I need to, you know, invest in other areas. So what am I going to say no to or what am I going to gain some efficiencies from, and actually what the cloud can do for you is make you more efficient right. It can either decrease some of the inputs into the prior services you are doing or increase your outputs and effectiveness because you're just able to get better scalability with it with the cloud services that you have. So it does address this problem of how do I keep scaling without having to invest super heavily thio achieve that scale. Three other big one, too that you just can't underestimate. And it kind of goes back to what I was talking about earlier. Is this again this notion of innovation and how do we get into position so we can actually innovate faster? And that's something that a lot of businesses it's a problem that everybody has is how do we continue thio innovate faster and sometimes you don't know what that innovation should be. But if you've actually gotten into the public cloud and more of this continuous cadence in the digital transformation, you're then in position Thio adapt and deal with those s O. That solves that problem of kind of addressing the unknowns and the changes that you just don't know what's gonna happen on the road ahead. What about I know you well. You, Ian and I all talked yesterday separately, but just about data strategy, right is a thing. Talk about that a little bit from from your perspective. Yeah. I actually think we're getting into this next wave almost where ah lot of the digital transformation motion was. You know, a lot of it started with infrastructure modernization. I'll just saying, You know what? A base level and that's where you know, it started with infrastructure as a service and and now you're starting to see kind of these two other past start to accelerate. There's the application modernization because people are evolving. Hey, migration is about lift and shift. It's it's not its just lift, unevolved plus right, help me continue to kind of get even deeper with my applications and being more cloud native. And then that actually has this tangential relationship. Well, guess what? There's a lot of data tied to those applications. So if you push mawr on trying to say, How are we gonna modernizer applications you cannot avoid Theis, you of looking at your database architectures and how you're leveraging that data. And so in some sense, they're both interconnected. But they can also be on their own kind of separate transformation journey in a way. And I think what we're really starting to see, these people are recognizing the importance now saying, You know what? I have to actually start really getting more strategic and thoughtful around my cloud transformation with my whole data footprint, whether it's the underlying architectures or the top level analytics like, Yeah, this is the data side goes so broad and deep. It's a cornerstone of getting it right. You know, we're talking about database modernization, getting out from, you know, long term licensing agreements, getting some flexibility, but at the same time re engineering the whole data structure. Thio. Really? You know, we're starting to see customers monetize their data, which they've never considered doing before. So I'm very excited about that one. Yeah, it's kind of, uh not only can you save some money, but it looks like you can actually drive innovation and potentially customer value in revenue at the same time. Yeah, and I think people are really starting. Appreciate that. That you can actually unlock value in that data that was maybe just consumed internally in a very siloed way and particularly is people are starting to modernize your application footprint and decompose those applications with micro services. The...

...reality is data starts to become this backbone and glue that's kind of pulled from and fed into a lot of different applications. And that's how you start to monetize it, either directly or indirectly. Yeah, it's not easy. I know it's not. I wish I actually wish it was easier, but that's I guess it was easier. Maybe we wouldn't have as much business way E. Oh, yeah, you know. And that's and I think that's, you know, way were just kind of retrace what we're talking about. One of I think the challenges with the public cloud. I mean, it creates so much opportunity. But as we talked about those three dimensions, you know, the public cloud is constantly changing. I mean, just look at what happened at reinvent this past couple of weeks with all the new announcements, and I think that's just both. The dilemma and the opportunity for enterprises is you're not only trying to transform from where you were to kind of some other state, but that state is constantly changing on you. And so that's where it's this motion about It's not an event for you. It's really about getting to a continuous motion in a digital transformation. So we often run into a situation with some of the people that we deal with that customers, and they may be a director or senior level type person in engineering. What they struggle with is they know these things need to be done in the future, but they have a hard time articulating the value to the executives. Do you feel you know, what are the hot buttons that they should be drilling in? There is a cost savings, the innovation, new revenue, opportunities E. I'm going to say the cost savings is the least important one. And I'm going to say the cost savings and more about repurpose ing of dollars to help you achieve those other things. So you know what? All companies are starving for the end, not starving for But at the end of the day, ah, lot of companies air really focused on, you know, three things. How doe I get grow and keep my customers and ah, lot of that comes back down to you know how you innovating, um, to give them new experiences to sell them new products and services and also delight them with your services and products. So they stay. And so that ultimately is really the core folks. And that's really mawr being put on because I t is evolving from being thought of. It's a cost center to a business enabler. And so it is less about how are you going to save money here? You know, I t organization. It's really more about no hiding and empower the business. Thio get new customers to keep the customers we have and growing more. Yeah, I just want to repeat that one more time because that is a great way of framing that up. So it's to keep grow and obtain new customers. Yeah. Yeah, you're any bit. It's about getting customers, keeping them and growing them. Okay, so okay, s So it's a little tactical advice to some of our audiences struggle because I think that's putting together business case around those three elements is probably thio. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And then some of the way you may get at that is you're able to repurpose some of the where you are spending your money before you know, to help go achieve those things. So to me, the cost savings things is more of a tactic about how you achieve the strategic things, which is really about How do you get keep and grow your customers? So let's kind of go into an anti question about the cloud right now. It Z Is it always the right answer? You know? Not always. You know, we like to. Obviously, we're always biased ourselves is a born in the cloud solutions provider, so but I've even saved for us. Well, we sometimes no, it's not always the answer on git. Sometimes could be. It's not that the answer right now. And it could be that there's just some other things that you...

...know need to get addressed or dealt with first and sometimes those air people related things or process related things. But, you know, again, you can't think of it is the cloud is the answer because it's really again. It's the technology operating system platform that everyone's kind of going to. But even if you deploy it, I mean, it's an enabler to help you get the answers that you want. What about s so if you look at that just extended a little farther. The potential risks really of migrating there would have, you know, again from from your vantage, you know, I could get technical day, that ideo Yeah. Yeah, And you guys, you guys can address the technical things better than I could, but I do. You know what? I do believe in general? You know, the risk that used to be thought of in there years ago or different, right? There used to be greater concerns, you know, out of the gate around just so putting production workloads, you know, Are they going to really do what they need to do? So I think the risk in some ways get back to you have to think about day two. And I think that's what we all recognized as well is that some people, when they're kind of going through this stuff, you can kind of say, Hey, we've arrived. We've done this transformation. But we know Day two is always there, and it's kind of like how are you going to kind of continue to leverage and optimize what you're doing with the public cloud in a day to perspective, In the backdrop of having this constant change, the other risk that air really, really candidly, our security and compliance. All right. And that's where you know, people just have toe have Ah, this is where you know the skill set issue comes into play. And there's this aspect of people, existing associates and your company needing toe learn, but also kind of Sometimes they're learning by doing and learning by making mistakes, which is okay, right? But some of the learned by doing can create risk when you think about just your own security and compliance posture and the public cloud, and we see that often that it's not it's kind of something wasn't configured or architected the right way. It's not that the public cloud isn't secure or isn't compliant. It's the way it was configured are architected that has created the risk right, which is the you know, the adage I use a lot of times is it's not the panacea of all. Thank you would have had that on premise. Well, right. So again, it Z yeah, yeah. So Well, well stated, Doug. Thank you. Yeah. So one of the last things I'd like to ask you, Doug kind of put you on the spot here is 2021. Do you have any predictions about the state of digital transformations? Yeah. I mean, it's not necessarily, you know, earth shattering. But the more people I talked to there is this growing feeling that things were just gonna accelerate. Right. And I think, you know, people are now, you know, putting in. I think they'll probably accelerate more to once people sort out. Just, you know, kind of what the new normal is, Um, coming out of the pandemic. And they've kind of got different budgets kind of out there to deal with that. But by and far, there is a general feeling that, you know, people are going to accelerate their digital transformations. They're also going to think about risk differently. Okay. And what I mean by that, you know, before if you still had your own data center doing stuff, if anything, the pandemic has highlighted the question of why Why do we have that? People can't get into it. I can't, you know, maybe get the access that you know. So there's there's definitely, you know, the risk profile in terms of enterprises looking at what do we strategically keep doing ourselves versus what do we outsource? Because there's a different risk profile for us to think about that in source versus outsourced decision now.

So I think they're going to rely a bit mawr on others where they can and get very more focused on what's strategically core to the business. And at the end of day. A lot of that answer is in the application, and the data layer for the business makes sense. Makes sense. That's great. Well, thank you, everybody, Skip. Always good to see your smiling face. Hey, Likewise, Ian and Doug, thank you very very much for joining us. Yeah, skipped. Enjoyed it, and he and thank you to absolutely thank everybody for listening. We love to hear from you. Please email us at Cloud Crunch at second watch dot com with your comments, questions and ideas. Thank you. You've been listening to Cloud Crunch with Ian Willoughby and Skip Very. For more information, check out the blogged. Second watch dot com slash company slash block or reach out to second watch on Twitter.

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