Data Culture in your cloud journey

Deon Thomas

What is your level of preparedness for the cloud, here are five approaches to get you started.

The ModelOps decision process
Five things to consider for success

Amazon Web Services announced that AWS Region is now available in Cape Town. They promise that customers can compute and store on-premise, with fully-managed and configurable, compute, and storage. The new region means that customers can service and run workloads with reduced latency. 

Since October 2018, when AWS CEO Andy Jassy first announced they would be opening a region in Cape Town, it finally arrived:

"Cape Town is unique because it's a long way to get to Europe, so the new region will be particularly meaningful in South Africa where the latencies are going to change fundamentally."

If you are on the cloud journey, this could mean a significant shift in your current plans to migrate your operations. The question you may ask is, what does a frictionless operating model look like to support your decision-making process? Here are a few guidelines we recommend you answer first.

Test your preparedness to respond to regulatory compliance? 

Automation is key to regulatory compliance. Many initiatives to migrate to the cloud are sensitive toward data leakage with security being top of mind, resulting in a data defense approach to minimize downside risk. Mostly due to ensuring compliance with regulations (such as rules governing data privacy and financial reports integrity). These efforts are primarily to provide comfort by ensuring the integrity of data passing through the company's internal systems to identifying, standardizing, and governing authoritative data sources, for this reason, cloud initiatives do not readily get embraced.

Assess the migration impact to lessen disruptions and improve your IT stability 

Invest in DataOps, DevOps, and MLOPs for a frictionless transition. Key to this is adopting Lean principles, and Agile methodologies are crucial to delivering in a highly productive, scalable, and efficient manner.

New skillset will need to be acquired on your cloud journey, invest, and prepare your teams for new technical capabilities, or partner with the right vendor, preferably to co-delivery and transformation, with clear accountability boundaries.

Focus on Data Literacy organization-wide

Key considerations must be made to understand the organization's data estate by democratizing data and insights. Data literacy is critical to facilitate conversations around data consumers, data producers, data sources, and ideas. According to Gartner:

"data literacy is ranked as the second-biggest internal roadblock to the success of the office of the chief data officer, by 2020, 80% of organizations will initiate deliberate competency development in the field of data literacy to overcome extreme deficiencies." - Gartner

Mitigate your risk

Work on a catalog of applications to modernize your legacy estate, be clear. Avoid large product roadmaps and strategies that go beyond three to four months. All data initiatives must adopt approaches to product thinking with a clear benefit to users.  

Your cloud strategy must include a multi-cloud response. The competition amongst cloud providers is becoming fierce. Ensure your cloud strategy and contractual obligations must have support for a reply to multi-cloud adoption.

Focus on security from the start

Work closely with the Chief Information Security office to modernize your security posture and controls. Essential to embed security as part of your delivery process.

When a response to critical business events is the highest priority, it is essential to engage in cloud implementation early, often parallel with strategy and planning efforts. Taking such an approach requires a growth mindset and a willingness to improve processes based on direct lessons learned iteratively.


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