Businesses gravitate to Oracle's cloud infrastructure services to save money, accelerate innovation and support agile new initiatives. 

David Le Strat, senior director of product management at Redwood City, Calif.-based enterprise software provider Oracle, explained this during a recent CMSWire webinar.

Enterprises are more often than not traveling on the road to the cloud. It's part of their digital transformation, Le Strat said. 

All enterprises will, in fact, travel the road at some point, added Craig Wentworth, principal analyst at MWD Advisors, a technology advisory and research firm based in Horsham, England.

“Peoples’ expectations of how we engage with each other and how work gets done have changed,” Wentworth said during the same CMSWire webinar sponsored by Oracle, "The Road to Cloud: Digital Experience Best Practices."

“It’s not a matter of if organizations will go the cloud. It’s when.”

Approach Cloud Adoption in Phases

But first, the how.

Wentworth advised organizations seeking cloud infrastructure services to work in phases. Start small enough to report improvements, he said, but plan big enough to achieve transformations.

Consider your content, your applications, and the people you’re engaging with when determining priorities for the cloud, Wentworth added.

Don’t over consult, over evangelize or be unrealistic.

And remember, you’ll have your challenges:

  • Cloud computing co-existing with existing investments
  • Demonstrating success to the business to build early use cases
  • Having a plan for adoption that must be agile in its implementation

“Approach cloud adoption in phases,” Wentworth said. “Most organizations will in the short-term have a mixed economy. Some content will be on-premises and some will be in the cloud. Embrace hybrid infrastructures.”

Choose a tool that will be in line with your enterprise’s strategic considerations. The tools must help you move to the next level. Use analytics, Wentworth said, to determine success through quantifiable metrics.

Take a Risk-Based Approach

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Wentworth repeatedly contends that cloud adoption is “not a case of if, but when.” Cloud-based solutions aren’t just for born-in-the-cloud businesses, he added.

That said, enterprises need to take a risk-based approach when prioritizing what to migrate to the cloud. What are the regulatory restrictions? What is your impact on converting legacy systems?

It’s not exactly a “rip and replace” kind of transformation.

Hybrid solutions could have a real benefit.

“Hybrid solutions exist both to accommodate a mixed-economy of cloud-appropriate and on-premise-only content and to leverage existing on-premise IT investments,” Wentworth said.

Focus on what delivers the most value to prove your case. Start with and keep the outcome in mind. How do you want to impact your employees and customers and work back from that, Wentworth added.

Where IT in the past focused on hierarchies and how information was stored, it’s now more about the “end-to-end picture,” Wentworth said. 

“It’s no longer,” he said, “about information at rest. How can IT drive change and be agile in the face of change. … There are new frontiers for collaboration. It’s ripe for reinvention. We now have the ability to think about collaborating to get work done in different ways.”

Title image "Cloudy days" (CC BY-SA 2.0) by emiliokuffer