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Enterprise Cloud Maturity Model – How to Guide | @CloudExpo #Cloud

The ECMM provides an openly available tool set that exploits what is an already available goldmine of industry resources

Enterprise Cloud Maturity Model - How to Guide
By Neil McEvoy

Introducing the ECMM – Enterprise Cloud Maturity Model
Although we live in a new On Demand Economy defined by the likes of Uber, Airbnb, Facebook and Twitter among others, firms who clearly demonstrate that the strategic use of modern new technologies like Cloud and Mobile to generate huge increases in shareholder value, many still struggle with adoption and are failing to react to the competitive threat the trend represents.

As this IDC report shows only 25% of organizations have repeatable strategies for Cloud adoption, with 32% having no Cloud strategy at all.

Therefore the goal of our Enterprise Cloud Maturity Model (ECMM) is to address this market need through a best practice based repeatable framework for planning Cloud adoption that drives business transformation maturity, encompassing:

Digital Platforms – From a top define perspective we focus on the key relationship between the underlying technical architecture and innovative, revenue-generating business models. How can this capability be defined as a repeatable blueprint for driving new strategic initiatives?

Enterprise Cloud Transformation – From the bottom up we reference a number of Cloud adoption materials so that organizations can advance their enterprise-wide Cloud maturity.

The purpose of the ECMM is to provide an openly available tool set that simply exploits what is an already available goldmine of industry resources focused on the practices and goals of migrating to new Cloud services, mainly focused on the process of cataloguing them and defining their integrated synthesis.

Adoption Planning Framework
Overall the ECMM is intended as a planning tool, a document that can underpin a project led by external consultants, in-house teams or a combination thereof.

It is accessible as one document to support an overall adoption program like our TRANSFORM Lifecycle, as well as being organized by five distinct journey modules for organizations seeking those isolated benefits:

  • Digital CIO Industry Innovation Leadership
  • Organizational Transformation – From Silos to DevOps
  • DevOps Toolsets and Practices
  • Cloud Native Microservices Application Architecture
  • IaaS Cloud Management Platforms

Furthermore the Solution Guides then build on this platform to describe it applied to specific use case requirements, like DRaaS.

Best Practice Reference Models
Although it can seem the Cloud industry is guilty of buzzword bingo, proliferating the sector with confusing terminology like DRaaS, iPaaS and many other ‘aaS’ options that can just seem like “Cloud washing” of any and all IT products, these terms actually provide an ideal reference framework for an industry ecosystem, from product roadmapping through to adoption planning.

It’s a framework that leverages simple but powerful principles, most notably that ‘aaS’ denotes adherence to a core common model, that the application is virtualized and can run on public IaaS, and therefore the terms all represent solution packaging of complex IT scenarios into a standardized, service-centric approach that integrates with the existing environment of Cloud Management tools.

This means customers can approach their Cloud Solution Design process as a “lego brick assembly” process, where they can de-compose their business model goals, eg Launch New Mobile Banking Service, into a series of Cloud modules, like IDaaS and iPaaS, each adding critical application level functionality that’s common to any digital enablement scenario, and that can be provisioned into a pre-defined DevOps environment that operates from this common Cloud platform.

ECMM Solution Guides
The goal of the ECMM is to make this lego assembly process, through extending the maturity model into Solution Guides.

In this modular fashion they build atop the ECMM to describe its application to specific customer scenarios, such as DRaaS, as well as to define the individual building blocks, like IDaaS. Identity as a Service is a solution in its own right that can facilitate a variety of customer functions, and also it can act as a foundation higher level capabilities that leverage the integrated identify ecosystem that the technology makes possible.

Vendor Capability Maps
With this in mind and also the goal of being a practical resource, a key aspect of the guides is integration of vendor profiles and more specifically the capabilities that their products enable, in ECMM maturity terms.

Each guide is based around a common solution guide model, with ‘VCMs’ – Vendor Capability Maps, being one of the central foundations.

This is because typically to define a maturity journey, in Cloud service terms, there is usually a process of deploying vendor infrastructure (including VMs) that then results in new capabilities within the Cloud provider portfolio. A simple example being use of a vendor like Veeam to enable core DRaaS and Backup functions.

As we explore the different domains of the ECMM, from DevOps through portability, then so different permutations of vendors yield different service capabilities. These can build out common Cloud platform building blocks as well as enable scenario-specific features.

blueprint

Solution Blueprints
The combination of these principles enables the Solution Guides to act as implementable solution blueprints for the scenarios they address.

Guides are further augmented with industry reference documents that also work around these same Cloud service terms, such as Gartner Magic Quadrants. For exampe in their MQ Critical Capabilities for DRaaS they say the MQ “assists IT leaders in developing a list of DRaaS providers and evaulate each on critical capabilities to be considered when choosing a DRaaS provider in order to best meet the needs of an organization.”

Our goal is to use theirs and other similar recommendations to offer ready-to-implement solution programs built around these design themes.

For example for our Mobile Enterprise guide:

  1. A core technical design reference model is available, through the CSCC white paper ‘Customer Cloud Architecture for the Mobile Enterprise’. We analyze this document to form the case study that then primes the design goals of the solution guide.
  2. Vendors like Apprenda offer these capabilities, defined in these reference model terms. In their white paper (Download registration) they describe how their PaaS suite enables’Backend-as-a-Service’, a configuration of this suite being to connect mobile app clients with back-end data stores, described using the same Cloud reference terms as listed in the CSCC paper.

Mobile applications are demanding scenarios and these application components will need to be able to scale dynamically in response to fluctuating, high volume demand, as well as ensure security. Apprenda provides the core Cloud platform components that meet these needs, such as multi-tenancy scalability and security policy enforcement.

The Apprenda PaaS is a software layer that can stitch together any number of server OS instances and load balancers into a distributed, logical, single-instance, shared services and data container. Apprenda aggregates all CPU, memory and storage capacity across OS nodes into an aggregate resource pool where enterprises can publish their mobile back-end web services and data models as “guests” to the hosting platform.

Hybrid Cloud Outsourcing
A simple example that shows the specific required functionality of key digital strategy tools like mobile applications are pre-defined as available reference models, and that these models define functional requirements that can be mapped and compared to vendor capabilities.

As a PaaS layer solution it can therefore be layers across IaaS and delivered as a Cloud solution.

This deliver is contextualized within an overall trend of ‘Hybrid Cloud Outsourcing’, to reflect the best practice and practical needs of enterprise organizations. Hybrid Cloud simply means a combination of some public IaaS with on-premise IT, but in practical implementation terms the types of issue that need addressed can include simple co-location of existing servers and legacy IT, not yet ready for Cloud migration.

A full service solution provider is able to meet this spectrum of needs and leverage IaaS as a core solution building block to quickly assemble next generation digital solutions, via an outsourcing framework that also yields short term efficiencies and cost savings through outsourcing best practices.

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