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How to assess your cloud maturity and cloud strategy

Demandbase’s Luis Teixeira and Pluralsight’s Erik Gross explain how to use the Cloud Maturity Matrix to build a cloud culture and meet business goals.

Dec 06, 2023 • 5 Minute Read

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  • Cloud
  • Software Development
  • Business
  • Learning & Development

94% of organizations are already in the cloud. But adopting cloud computing alone isn’t enough to drive value from the technology. In fact, 70% of organizations still struggle to drive customer value with the cloud.

At Pluralsight Navigate 2023, Luis Teixeira, Demandbase’s VP, Head of CloudOps, and Erik Gross, Pluralsight’s Principal Consultant for Engineering Transformation, sat down to discuss how organizations can prepare for the future of cloud computing and use Pluralsight’s Cloud Maturity Matrix to level up their cloud strategy.

Wherever you are in your cloud journey, Luis and Erik provide tips to help you assess your organization’s cloud maturity, build a cloud culture, and meet big-picture goals.

Table of contents

What is Pluralsight’s Cloud Maturity Matrix?

Luis and Erik emphasized that cloud maturity isn’t a destination—it’s an ongoing process that requires constant alignment of skills with organizational goals. 

So how do you know where your organization stands? Luis and Erik shared Pluralsight’s Cloud Maturity Matrix to help. This cloud maturity model measures maturity across three dimensions: engagement, tactics, and outcomes.

In our 2023 State of Cloud report, we found that most organizations fall within the middle levels of maturity. They’ve adopted cloud technology and began building cloud computing skills, but they still struggle with budgeting, deployments, and security. In many ways, leaders have been so focused on cloud services they’ve let overarching strategy and outcomes fall behind.

Cloud maturity assessment: Tips to measure your cloud maturity

Luis and Erik used Pluralsight’s cloud maturity model to help attendees assess their cloud maturity and connect the dots between cloud computing and business outcomes.

Engagement: Create a cloud culture

In terms of cloud maturity, engagement refers to organization-wide cloud fluency. In the most mature organizations, technical and non-technical employees understand cloud computing fundamentals. The organization operates under a comprehensive cloud strategy with practices and processes for new projects and disaster recovery. 

While this is the gold standard, the majority of organizations (62%) limit cloud upskilling to technical teams. Organizations that want to drive full-scale transformation need to upskill non-technical employees so everyone can speak the language of cloud.

To assess your organization’s engagement level, Luis and Erik suggest asking yourself the following questions:

  • Do you have sustainable cloud communities? If so, what’s the state of your Cloud Center of Excellence, Cloud Center for Enablement, and Cloud Community of Practice?

  • What are you doing to create a common culture of learning and practice surrounding the cloud?

  • How cloud literate is your entire organization? 

  • Do you provide cloud learning resources and encourage everyone to use them?

Tactics: Determine cloud policies and systems

Tactics refers to the systems and governance an organization uses to manage the cloud. Organizations that are tactically mature have migrated and refactored their systems for the cloud. They also have tools and processes in place to track things like disaster recovery and SLAs.

As Luis and Erik noted, though, organizations moving to the cloud often lack the time and resources to migrate their systems properly. Instead of taking the time to assess their applications and infrastructure and how they’ll benefit from the cloud, they jump right in with a lift and shift migration. There’s nothing wrong with this approach when done intentionally, but without a migration strategy, orgs fail to see the value they were promised.

To perform a cloud maturity assessment for tactics, Luis and Erik urged orgs to consider:

  • Do you have a cloud spend management plan? How about cloud SLA policies and cloud governance?

  • Do policymakers have professional certifications?

  • How scalable and flexible are your applications and infrastructure?

  • What does cloud literacy and strategy look like in your organization?

A cloud migration strategy is inherently different from on-premises setups. Luis shared his top three tips for cloud migration based on his experience at Demandbase.

  1. Treat infrastructure like code: Instead of manually logging into your cloud solution and clicking buttons to manage infrastructure, follow best practices and treat it like code. 
  2. Remove unused resources: Cloud infrastructure isn't physical hardware; it’s scalable. Grow and shrink your infrastructure as needed to maximize efficiency and reduce unnecessary costs.
  3. Empower developers with cloud knowledge: Developers need a deep understanding of cloud services and functionality to maximize its potential. It’s no longer enough for one central team to own infrastructure—everyone needs cloud skills.

Outcomes: Tie cloud technology to organizational outcomes

Luis and Erik highlighted a key challenge: Even if organizations have a cloud strategy, they tend to build them around short-term migration goals instead of long-term business outcomes. While organizations need these tactical benchmarks for a successful cloud implementation, they also need goals tied to big-picture outcomes.

Why is your organization migrating to the cloud? What are you hoping to achieve with cloud computing? Without a strategic vision, organizations fail to improve performance, drive customer value, and boost ROI with cloud solutions.

To align cloud services with business goals, Luis and Erik asked orgs to think about:

  • What engineering and business initiatives are you working on now that have a direct tie to cloud transformation?

  • Is your cloud approach aligned with those goals? If not, how can you align them?

  • Have you secured executive leader buy-in for cloud?

Moving towards maturity: Building value with a cloud strategy

When you consider multicloud environments and hybrid clouds, cloud maturity becomes even more complex. Using a cloud maturity model can help you identify areas of improvement and build a more comprehensive cloud strategy.

This session with Luis and Erik is one of many from Pluralsight Navigate 2023. In the meantime, check out last year’s Navigate sessions on building a cloud education program and creating a culture of cloud innovation.

Learn more about Pluralsight’s cloud transformation solution.

Pluralsight Content Team

Pluralsight C.

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