CEO’s are quick to compare and contrast, yet all are in agreement that taking your business to the cloud is a necessity. The end-to-end process from on premise infrastructures to cloud ecosystem is always an iterative process that cannot be approached as a quick journey. In fact, some would even argue that the “longer the migration journey, the bigger the benefits”, while we do not subscribe to such school of thought it does have merits since knowledge  iterations cannot be compressed. With decades of experience, at DFX5 we have found that firms tend to repeat the same common mistakes when migrating. Resources are over-provisioned and not used, processes are re-factored without taking into consideration cloud specific advantages, and costs are wasted in unnecessary or unplanned data movements. We understand the process of migrating to the cloud and we know the hidden costs involved with migrations.

As cloud migrations continue to expand around the world, the industry is maturing by implementing sound methodologies that uniformly improve all cloud migrations. At DFX5, we apply these industry standards by adopting the AWS Cloud Adoption Framework, which enforces a series of guidelines and processes for cloud migration. As we continue to assist clients in their migration, we have developed a series of proprietary solutions in an industry-agnostic format. Regardless of your industry, our cloud migration principles can assist by providing a comprehensive set of recipes that mitigate migration risks. The proprietary framework integrates best-practices, industry-compliance, and our experience into one easy to follow format for systematic approach. The high-level overview of our cloud journey methodology is depicted on the picture below.

We distinguish between the holistic Enterprise Journey to the Cloud and the Application Journey to the Cloud.

Enterprise Journey to the cloud

It focuses on enterprise as a whole and its approach is to start working, maintain and innovate in the cloud. It presents what should be the first steps within the overall process. The objective is to cover the principles of cloud governance as any other capability, taking into consideration the perspectives of the people (stakeholders), processes and services (cloud tools). The combination of perspectives defines a recipe for the organization that encompasses all points of view. The step is iterative, it is not a one-time process, but rather a cycle or a repeatable circle that never ends improving. The most important aspect of the Enterprise Journey to the Cloud is its focus on people above all else. Cloud activities should be developed based on how they will be used, thus stakeholder perspectives must drive designs. Business goals bring different added values for each stakeholders, some focus on cost reduction, agility, more innovation, while others on innovation, technology rationalization, shorter time to market, or many others. The goal is to take all perspectives into account and consideration before designing final solutions, and even middle iterative steps seek to ensure all perspectives have been resolved.

At DFX5 we start with a proper analysis of your current state to fully understand the business context and business potential of cloud adoption. Based on the findings, we prepare an indicative solution with an explanation of added value and business cases. During the phase, activities to be accomplished include TCO calculator, ROI calculations, SWOT analysis and other business management tools. All activities need to be done together with assistance of stakeholders from the organization.

After the full understanding of the business case has been completed, then we move to the process aspect. The process aspect describes which processes and activities should be established within each department of the organization. Roles and responsibilities are defined for every user and role, while a proper application portfolio management (APM) is formed. DFX5 supports the overall APM with processes that are candidates for migration to the cloud. The well-known industry standard is the Gartner Time analysis, which categorizes applications based on their business and technology value. Then it recognizes the best suited ones for cloud adoption. Finally, the overall digital transformation strategy is developed. The transformation strategy must mitigate risks and vulnerabilities in security and data recovery.

The Cloud Center of Excellence (CCoE) is to be established to support cloud initiatives. The CCoE becomes the starting point for all cloud matters within the organization. At first the CCoE is composed of documents and links, but as time progresses, webinars, interactive learning lessons, tests, and other cloud-native applications can be integrated to expand the footprint of impact of the CCoE.

Application Journey to the Cloud

The second aspect is the Application Journey to the Cloud which deals with managing the individual applications or processes within your organization. The Application Journey is typically a uniform process that categorizes each process into a bin or bucket based on its parameters and characteristics. Based on which bin or bucket the process is placed in, then additional actions are to be taken. For every candidate application there needs to be a decision made for which corresponding migration strategy would best suit and accomplish the greatest results. The migration strategies are called “The 7R’s” and reflect following approaches:

  • Relocate
  • Rehost (“lift & shift”)
  • Replatform (“lift-tinker-and-shift”)
  • Repurchase (“drop and shop”)
  • Refactor
  • Retain
  • Retire

DFX5 has helped companies to make hundreds of applications migration strategy decisions. Our certified AWS solutions architects will assist you to choose the best strategy for each application. We have developed and refactored many enterprise-grade systems and have supervised organizations while completing industry-grade migrations. For every application migrated, a plan, technology roadmap, and application runbook are developed for the proper sustainability of the migration. Factory approaches, which outline a series of predetermined blueprints and solution principles, accelerate current and future migration processes are used.

Our mission is to guide organizations within their journey to the cloud. We have escorted dozens of organizations during the last decade of our presence. Success story is the best satisfaction for everybody at DFX5.