Top 5 Critical Success Factors of Cloud Implementation

As businesses experience increased cost and efficiency pressures related to their on-premise applications, cloud implementation is becoming more inevitable day by day. Many companies are debating whether to maintain their current on-premise applications and upgrade to the next version or migrate to the cloud. It is becoming clearer that the only logical and strategic investment that ensures longevity and growth for your company lies with the cloud. However, cloud migration takes time and requires you do your due diligence before starting the process. Discover the five most critical factors to consider in order to guarantee your implementation is a success.

1. Business Process

When considering cloud implementation, one of the first steps is to assess whether your company would be a good fit. This is when it becomes pertinent to understand the impact of the cloud, the involvement of your migration partner, and the time it takes to successfully complete an implementation. For your company to run efficiently with the cloud, you should mandate from the top down that your company will adopt whatever the cloud needs so that you will align your processes with the cloud.

2. Global Enterprise Design

Just like when building a house, it’s vital to begin your cloud implementation journey with a strong foundation; certain foundational dimensions will ultimately dictate the size of rooms. It’s not important what wallpaper or light fixtures you choose because they can be easily changed, but you can’t change the size of your rooms (as easily). Global enterprise design works the same way. If you start with Taleo implementation because it’s important to your company but decide later you want to implement another structure, there would be a large amount of time dedicated to restructuring and altering the design of the foundation. Instead, first strategically planning out workforce and enterprise structures will allow you to build upon your foundation by seamlessly adding things like Taleo implementation. This investment early on will save you time and money as your company grows.

3. Project Management & Governance for the Cloud

When it comes to building a house, there are always multiple parties like electricians, plumbers, interior designers, and many others working together. Often these parties’ schedules are dependent on the completion of others and wouldn’t get completed without a governance document which guides the responsibility and timeline details of the project. Implementing cloud software works similarly because it is important to establish policies to ensure the project runs smoothly. Organizations that use traditional on-premise systems are dependent on the customer and the software integrator. However, when it comes to the implementation of the cloud you not only have to deal with third-party vendors like Oracle, but you also depend on various other parties such as individual project teams. The success of the cloud implementation is dependent on all the parties. If one of the parties drops the ball, you will have a prolonged implementation stage and waste valuable time. It’s crucial all parties use a unified project timeline that clearly defines what is currently happening, what they are responsible for, and the status of their projects. This will create a transparent channel of communication between the multiple parties, ensuring implementation success.

4. Data Preparation for Migration

Roughly 30%-40% of the time spent during an implementation is dedicated to the data conversion process. This staggering number reveals that your organization must be ready to prepare data well in advance to allow for efficient implementation. Conversion is not only the system integrator’s problem, but it is also your organization’s problem because it likely hints at a systemic data accuracy and integrity issue. It’s vital to have the right tools to extract, transform, cleanse, and upload your data to the cloud while also maintaining data integrity. There are many common challenges when it comes to extracting, transforming, and migrating data because this kind of data usually comes from disparate, older systems with lower data integrity. In order to have a successful implementation, you must plan ahead of time and have the right tools.

5. User Adoption

When it comes to cloud adoption there a lot of new challenges to be aware of. Not only do the changes affect the end-user but the new cloud software also affects the people who manage the systems. On-premise users can change an application to better fit their needs, but in the cloud, this change becomes much harder to execute and carries additional hefty costs. Companies often underestimate the effort it takes to bring people to adapt to change. It’s important to clearly communicate why your company is implementing cloud and the certain benefits your company and employees will receive because of the change. You should implement ongoing training and a consistent feedback channel with all adopters of the cloud.

If you can follow these five factors, your cloud migration is destined for success. To learn more about how your company can migrate to the cloud, download The Guide to Cloud Migration.