In August 2018 Tranquility Base Founder, Andrew Rossiter issued a report on the state of cloud adoption within the global Financial Services arena. Given that we are at the beginning of a new year – and decade – we thought it would be interesting to revisit the report and speak to Andrew to see, in his view, what has changed and what has remained the same.
In part 1 we looked at the state of play and what has come to fruition since 2018. It is clear that all industries, not just financial services, are not as far forward as one may have hoped. Tell us why…
“The main reason is that for the first time since the early 90s, almost all companies have simultaneously decided to transform their IT estate. The last big change of this scale was when PCs became cheap enough to be deployed on hundreds or thousands of desktops and client-server software was created. Nearly everyone decided at the same time to migrate from central mainframe systems to distributed platforms built on a variety of new software languages, creating the same challenges, including lack of knowledge, experience and available resources.
Whilst perceived to be of enormous impact, the introduction of the Web actually only caused a subset of enterprise applications to be rewritten, and this happened over a fairly long period of time. But of course now, the problem of legacy is far higher than it was 30 years ago, and the skills required to migrate or re-engineer for the cloud are far more complex and broad.
Take for example an article discussing client-server from 1996: “As technology sophistication increases linearly, the design skill requirements increase exponentially. Users are seduced by easy-to-use development tools. Today, anybody with a credit card can purchase visual development tools and create applications. When this is done outside the scope of the centralized IS department, these applications become support nightmares”. Brown observed: “A lot of those people doing those applications don’t have any idea of what they’re doing. They need the design skills.”
All this sounds pretty familiar 20 years on! History is repeating itself and many companies are repeating the same mistakes as before.”
What are the challenges? Are they the same as they were 18 months ago?
Yes, unfortunately so…
So, what is actually going on right now and what has been done to address these problems?
Without sounding negative, let us start with the challenges and failures that we have seen. They broadly fall into the following categories I have tried to avoid mentioning the obvious ones):
If we haven’t been able to move very far forward in 18 months what can organisations do differently so that come summer 2022 we aren’t having the same conversations?
Our view is that organisations need to be looking at creating a cloud adoption framework (CAF) utilising a ‘Datacenter as Code’ (DaC) solution. This builds on the Infrastructure as Code (IaC) concept; if IaC provides the ‘lego bricks’ then DaC is the completed model, following the detailed instructions. DaC is a living, running piece of software that automates the building and provisioning of all of your software-defined datacentre assets.
Can we afford not to do this?
There is a real risk that as an industry we are in the midst of repeating the same mistakes made in the mid-1990s. We have similar constraints on accessing talented staff who have done this work before, and we are all going through the pain at more-or-less the same time. These challenges were at the core of our thinking about how to solve the problem, by creating a code-based open source initiative for the benefit of all. We believe that by creating an automated open source initiative that anyone can use can provide the breakthrough to help transform business in many industries…thus Tranquility Base was formed.
If you would like to stay informed about our progress, please follow us on LinkedIn, or contact us via the website. We will be making a number of interesting announcements over the next few months.