Cloud Operations

02 July, 2021

Complete control throughout the entire cloud life cycle

The smooth operation of cloud services requires the interaction of technical expertise, meticulous organisational design, and business-oriented implementation. On the one hand, it is important to provide stable and scalable IT infrastructure which benefits the strategic objectives as much as possible. On the other, this infrastructure needs to be developed gradually, adapt to changing business requirements, and serve as a basis for further innovation.

PwC supports you throughout the entire cloud life cycle to ensure secure operation without losing sight of future planning and further growth.

What secure cloud operations involve

Anchoring cloud operations in daily business

Following successful cloud migration, the new infrastructure must be employed sustainably and securely in daily business and gradually developed in accordance with the objectives of your cloud strategy. Professional project management is necessary to establish clear structures and processes for cloud operations. Furthermore, change management also plays a key role in transitioning back to regular operations. Ultimately, the use of cloud solutions does not just entail technical changes; it also necessitates operational and business adaptations. 

Securing the cloud-based application landscape against failures

How can you ensure that cloud applications and services are highly available, resilient, and resistant to failure? The safeguarding of the application landscape is among the key challenges for cloud operations. From a technical point of view, it is necessary here to analyse the specific cloud technology stacks, as well as all current approaches relating to the fields of containerisation and microservices. Moreover, in order to ensure fail-safe operation, the architecture should be designed to distribute key applications throughout several regions.

Taking advantage of potential for automation

The transition to cloud operations opens up opportunities to automate existing processes and thus optimise the efficiency and productivity of your IT. While ideally concepts for process automation should already be identified while compiling the cloud strategy, they are utilised in practice when operations are set up. Furthermore, even after regular operations are established, additional opportunities for automation which could move the business forward should be reviewed.

Setting up service, security and compliance monitoring

Companies must set up effective cloud monitoring in order to monitor cloud operations continuously and identify critical incidents quickly. It helps ensure the security of the components used, prevents compliance breaches, and minimises negative repercussions for your business.

Typical challenges when setting up comprehensive monitoring include the choice of suitable tools, the selection and configuration of the parameters to be monitored according to strategic requirements, and the consolidation of reports and logs into clearly structured dashboards.

Our Services for Cloud Operations

With the broadest cloud portfolio on the market, PwC supports you at each stage along your individual pathway into the cloud. We use the following services to help you ensure the efficient and sustainable operation of the cloud-based infrastructure throughout its entire life cycle.

Service Level Design

The design and monitoring of service-level agreements (SLA) pose great challenges, particularly for complex cloud solutions. With our holistic approach for service level design, we support you in reliably managing all your SLAs – including in the most complex constellations with multi SLAs and various affected stakeholders and cloud service providers. Among our other services, we offer SLA maturity assessments and compile frameworks for the development and enforcement of SLAs.

Service Monitoring Design

Sophisticated monitoring is indispensable to ensure the service continuity of cloud applications. We help you design and set up effective monitoring so that you retain full control of all cloud components and service models (SaaS, PaaS, IaaS, etc.) regardless of the service provider – from the strategy, to implementation, and ending with commissioning in daily business. In doing so, we always coordinate the service monitoring design closely with the contractual management and the SLAs.

ITSM Adaption

The application of traditional methods for IT service management (ITSM) to cloud management helps in devising, planning, supplying, operating and controlling cloud services. We assist companies in adapting cloud approaches for their ITSM, thus increasing the reliability and transparency of their IT. To do so, we use proven tools to promote the implementation of corresponding ITSM processes. 

DevOps and Continuous Delivery

The DevOps concept allows for a seamless connection between software development and IT operations. It is a prerequisite for the continuous delivery of software, which enables newly developed software features to be brought into production extremely quickly. This requires a continuous integration / continuous delivery pipeline, which automates all the significant steps from the build process, through quality assurance, and up to packaging and deployment. We help you set up and manage interdepartmental DevOps processes and assess continuous delivery processes in terms of risk, as well as based on governance and compliance aspects.

Assessment of maturity

How successful was the cloud transformation? Have all the objectives been achieved? If not, why not? Our experts help you systematically evaluate completed cloud projects, identify opportunities for improvement, and define subsequent initiatives. In this way, you as a decision-maker gain a clear understanding regarding how effective the project was and what the implementation means for your organisation and your further pathway towards cloud computing.

Cloud Tooling and Automation

Transitioning IT infrastructure into the cloud is often accompanied by a higher degree of standardisation, which opens up new possibilities for the automation of repetitive processes. We support you in selecting suitable tools for the cloud operations field which will allow you to effectively automate predefined IT processes. In this way, you optimise your IT operations, ensure better performance, and boost the efficiency of your business processes, all at the same time.

Exit planning

In order to minimise dependencies to cloud service providers, companies should ideally review any lock-in risks prior to migration and also consider a later exit as part of their planning. We help you prepare an exit strategy to actively manage risks and take all necessary precautions for transitioning following an exit.

Human Resources Development

The continuing education of employees is crucial for guaranteeing that the new processes of your cloud operations work and that all the guidelines in place are observed. We help you prepare the team involved in the use and development of cloud services quickly for the new situation. To do so, we rely on our extensive repertoire of proven training plans and documents, as well as communication materials. Based on these resources, we develop customised trainings for your individual circumstances.

Further services in the area of the Cloud Transformation Journey

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Hauke Schaettiger

Hauke Schaettiger

Partner, PwC Germany

Sebastian Paas

Sebastian Paas

Partner, PwC Germany