As a senior executive, your company is likely to have either transferred a portion of its tasks to the cloud or at least have a cloud migration strategy in effect. However, with the number of resources that can be accessed from the cloud growing exponentially, cloud usage is now as much about the availability of enterprise capabilities as it is about IT.
The major cloud vendors are also providing enterprise-focused applications and are shipping business functionality components, allowing companies to move from IT system builders to business application assemblers.
How can this encourage companies to move forward? Companies immediately have versatility, the freedom to experiment, the freedom to develop distinct goods and services, and the potential to scale very rapidly if we look at the cloud as a way to assemble company skills.
Let’s go back for a second to differentiate between cloud and cloud-native market skills as an IT technique.
Initially, the cloud presented a new means of buying computing and storage (on-demand, pay-per-use, and self-service). This increased agility and lower prices, in some cases, however, did not change the enterprise itself. Next, the cloud vendors added the so-called cloud-native software services allowing developers to create cloud applications. This shortened the time of growth, encouraging teams to iterate faster and strengthen goods and services.
However, the wealth of resources provided by cloud vendors has evolved to such a degree that a new phase of transformation is possible today: cloud-native enterprise capabilities that are planned, built and distributed from day one across the cloud. Cloud vendors now provide a wide variety of components that bring market value. They have also developed specialized platforms that target all significant developments in technology, such as blockchain, 5G, deep learning, artificial intelligence, and digital identity. This evolution encourages companies to move from being IT machine builders to business capability assemblers.
As an analogy, imagine airplane manufacturing. Next, we went from constructing airplanes with screws and bare metal to building them with components (e.g., fan blades). We are switching to modules now (e.g., complete engines). Companies also can source whole Airbus-style business capacities, pushing the comparison further (wings, fuselage, etc.).
When it is possible to assemble enterprise capabilities from cloud modules, spending on new products and services is reduced dramatically, as is the time to market. If a new product or service is widespread, the business will be able to scale up quickly.
The competitive benefit can come to those who can imagine how modules will be assembled to produce distinct consumer proposals on a utility basis from the cloud and those who have the expertise to act on their idea, with too much power available from the cloud on a utility basis. Ironically, a broader embrace of the cloud makes it more, not less, essential to have the right people (and partners). Businesses can generate strategic edge using the cloud as a business technique, improving the ability to make the cloud a business-shaping strategy.
But as the market-focused cloud solution evolves, note that business and IT leaders’ positions can and should also change.
In particular, the chief information officer (CIO) and IT teams will spend even less time putting together piping as the focus shifts from construction to assembly and will now become orchestrators of transition. CIOs and their teams will play a vital role in informing and reminding their peers about cloud capabilities and the potential for a meaningful market impact.
Instead of developing applications and capabilities in-house using conventional resources and procedures, both the current organizational and cultural models would need to change to leverage the capacity for assembling company components from the cloud. In pushing this transition, C-level executives’ constructive involvement would be critical, and even more so in envisioning the promise of cloud-native company capabilities.
Ask yourself these questions whether your enterprise is able to go forward:
- What are the latest goods and services that can give our internal and external clients the most value?
- In order to promote new goods and services, which modules are available from the cloud?
- Which of the cloud vendors has the variety of resources that will best contribute to the cloud-native market skills we need?
- Where are we going to use collaborators to assemble and handle cloud components because they have different expertise and experience?
- In order to take advantage of the ability to develop cloud-native applications and assemble (rather than build) cloud-native business capabilities, what improvements are needed in our operating model?