Pitching costs savings alone is rarely enough to get cloud development initiatives funded. Instead, focus on the strategic benefits of cloud software modernization and development including improved agility, increased performance and faster time to market.
Here are 7 types of cloud development projects that we’ve seen consistently receive funding and move forward successfully.
1) Quick wins to show it can be done
Proof of concepts and quick wins involve minimal risk while showing clear business value. For example, an electronics provider wanted to combine billions of data points with Google Cloud and BigQuery to create a clear picture of their worldwide device manufacturing. We built a working prototype in 3 weeks to demonstrate the viability and business value of handling Big Data analytics on Google. Once executives saw the prototype, they funded and implemented a full project.
2) Applications supporting global business growth
Public clouds are great for global deployments of applications with modern, mostly cloud-ready architectures. These applications gain significant improvements in both performance and uptime when properly deployed on the cloud. For global customer facing applications, even modest performance improvements deliver far-reaching downstream benefits.
3) Security, monitoring and management solutions
Legacy security monitoring and management solutions are being replaced by a new breed of SaaS offerings that are globally scalable, high speed, and provide near-real-time analytics. Plus, these leading-edge solutions integrate data from multiple systems to reduce business and operational risk. They are very good candidates to get the green light for funding.
4) Key applications with frequent unplanned outages
Mission-critical applications that suffer from frequent outages and poor SLA compliance are major blockers to business growth and therefore prime candidates for modernization. We worked with a Fortune 100 insurance provider to assess a list of their 50 most troubled applications. The assessment produced very good candidates for modernization which aligned business with IT in the justification to move forward.
5) Software handling large user bases with little automation
This type of application modernization project focuses on DevOps, automation and streamlined user onboarding. Assessing applications with large user bases, high usage rates, and low user satisfaction frequently uncovers valuable opportunities for business process automation. One client’s legacy application used to take 85 days to onboard new customers. After automation, we reduced onboarding time to 20 days, cutting the number of required resources in half.
6) High business value applications with spiky traffic
Traditionally, applications that deal with highly variable traffic required business workarounds to throttle incoming requests to what systems can handle. Modernizing applications to run on the cloud removes these throughput barriers. Facing huge spikes in traffic during the holiday shopping season, one client was limited to 20 transactions per second on their ecommerce website. We re-architected their application to handle 2,000 transactions per second, enabling an additional $5,000,000 in revenue on Cyber Monday.
7) Batch analytics applications
When collecting and analyzing near-real time data is critical for business productivity, modernizing batch analytics applications is a must. An agriculture co-op wanted to provide their farmers with an integrated application for analyzing field and crop data, so we designed and built a data exchange platform on Google Cloud Platform. Because farmers and retailers no longer had to manually enter crop data, their productivity skyrocketed.
Although most enterprises are committed to embracing a holistic move to the cloud, IT leaders must still present compelling reasons to justify the investment. For the strongest business case, look beyond the cost savings and focus on how modernizing your applications will enable you to be more agile, more secure, more scalable, more productive and, ultimately, more competitive.