What are your biggest concerns with cloud migration?

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Board Member, Former CIO in Software, 10,001+ employees
Cloud infrastructure really virtualizes infrastructure decisions in a way that doesn't mean you don't have to think about them, but it just makes them dramatically easier to execute. Because we still have third-party SaaS stuff, one of the things that I think the cloud has made more complex is, "Where the hell's your data?" And, also, "Who owns it?" Once you get into SaaS providers, everybody's Terms of Service are different, everybody's data stewardship is different. And so, it's complex to know where everything is. When I think about a company like Woven, if Woven gets to scale, we have no infrastructure at all; all of our stuff is all over the place, and we're a tiny little company and we have more than a dozen different cloud service providers that our infrastructure resides in. That creates a whole new set of complexities around who owns it, where it is, what rules apply to it, and how you make sure that it's being managed to be compliant to those roles. And that, I think, is one of the most interesting and tricky issues moving forward, particularly when it's no longer just the data that's valuable but it's also the metadata around it; who gets to count it, who gets to gain insights from it?
VP, Customer and Technical Operations in Software, 501 - 1,000 employees
On the corporate side, the whole governance question resonates because we're very flexible, but then GDPR and CCPA came about and we determined we needed to have a more formal process. Since we are made up of several acquisitions, we have not had the chance to consolidate all of our systems. It took a considerable effort to create a complete data map. It's great that teams can find a tool they want and spin it up, but I feel like I'm the traffic cop trying to say, "Well, wait a minute, we have to look at the data privacy agreement before you put it in there." It is an ongoing effort to educate employees on data privacy compliance. In the SaaS world it's fantastic how fast things can move where we've had teams who found a tool and, after it being reviewed, within three or four days they're already saying they are significantly more productive. But then how do you corral that? I've struggled when one team found a tool and someone else wanted a similar tool, and I’m trying to get them to actually cooperate in an environment where they don’t go, "It's only going to be $100 a month." And I'm trying to explain that we need some consistency as well as these costs tend to grow pretty quickly.
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CTO in Software, 11 - 50 employees

Yeah. The religions around tools are always challenging from a governance perspective.

CEO in Software, 11 - 50 employees
I am an early adopter; I even built a small cloud environment for a couple of companies around the turn of the previous decade. From my perspective, I see cloud computing from the purest of angles which is, "Where does it solve an actual problem versus where does it just simplify my life? How do those two things correspond with the direction of the company and responding to the CFO?" When I look at digital transformation and I think that some percentage of enterprises, I don't know what it is, are going to go from a library to a Google. What does that mean to the impact of technical spend on top-line revenue? And how do people start looking at that?

Without the internet, without digitization, Google is a library. If we'd been talking about this in 1985, who would've believed anyone that said a library might be worth a trillion dollars and get visitors from around the world on a minute-by-minute basis? If a library can become a behemoth that buys $20 billion a year in infrastructure, then what does that lead to for many of the other enterprises out there that haven't truly digitized in the way they respond to customers? And if they do digitize, even to a percentage of what a PayPal has digitized to or an eBay or an Amazon or a Facebook or a Google, what does that mean for total technical spend for a company? Do they look at it differently? Yes, it's great when you're spinning up five servers to be able to say, "I spun it up on the cloud and I didn't have to spend $50,000 on those servers right now, I can spend 5,000 a month instead on spinning up the equivalent servers on AWS." But when you're spending 400 million a year, and being in a cloud provider means that you're going to spend a billion a year for the same infrastructure, can the CFO ignore that? I'm curious because I don't know that answer, I'm just guessing where I would go leading a large organization's IT function and corresponding to their IT or technology delivery to external customers and how that might change with digitization. Those are the concerns that I'd be worried about, and would be trying to mitigate.
CIO in Education, 1,001 - 5,000 employees
Part of what keeps me up at night is that runaway query that's going to cost me 20 grand a month because somebody doesn't know what the heck they're doing. And so, how do I put in guardrails? Can I put in guardrails for something like that? So, again I approach it very methodically. It's not rushing to do it for the sake of doing it. It's understanding every step of the way before you actually take that step.
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VP, Customer and Technical Operations in Software, 501 - 1,000 employees

We actually had a $30,000 out-of-control query; well, they didn't say it was out of control, they said it was incredibly important for the analytics team to deliver a report but I'm like, "There's got to be a better way?" The scary thing about the cloud is that if you're buying a server to go through some sort of procurement process, it's not an admin who just hit some button, or an end user who's running a query that drives it, so it's obviously becomes a lot harder to control and you need to have team members with the right tools and the right skill set to conceive where you can run into these problems.

CTO in Software, 11 - 50 employees

You need to move from human-controlled supply chain and governance to programmatic with cloud because it's so easy to spin up infrastructure.

Board Member, Former CIO in Software, 10,001+ employees

Things like $30,000 queries; I run into this issue even with my tiny little startup of 10 people with Woven; our analytics costs have been in the thousands of dollars a month because of this exact issue and it takes a technologist who really understands, "Okay. What's the business question we're trying to answer? What's the most efficient way to answer based on how they're going to charge us?" and then to go off and fix those things. There's probably a real opportunity to do what you’re talking about @Mike; to come up with a mechanism to do programmatic controls for organizations that are tied to the business. I think it is a really interesting idea.

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