Six Key Ways to Accelerate the Value of Cloud

These initiatives can help drive success no matter where your organization is today on its digital transformation journey. 

Two-thirds of those responding to Gartner’s 2018 Digital Business CIO survey say they’re pursuing “transformation,” but based on discussions with clients about their actual digital business initiatives, Gartner believes that figure is closer to one in ten.

If you think this may be true for your company, you are vulnerable to digital disruption.

As Gartner noted, “Markets tend to digitalize slowly at first, then hit an inflection point where digitalization unfolds rapidly. Conventional organizations cannot keep up because they have not yet developed the competencies, capabilities or market credibility. 

As an example, the analyst firm noted that fully a quarter of first-time buyers of renters’ insurance in New York chose a born-in-the-cloud upstart rather than a conventional insurer, just seven months after the new company launched there.   

The transformation opportunity 

Today’s enterprise is bombarded with customer, employee and stakeholder demands, with the expectation that everything can be had as a service, customized for their unique need at that moment. 

That’s the challenge. The opportunity? New devices, expanded mobility and the Internet of Things have expanded the data available to companies at an exponential rate — driving the depth and breadth of potential business insight to new heights. 

To lead in this digital world, businesses are tasked with delivering value in six major ways: 

  • Create new business models  
  • Accelerate the delivery of products and services 
  • Increase business agility 
  • Deliver superior customer experiences  
  • Optimize economics  
  • Fortify security and address compliance  

IT must take the lead to deliver on these transformative opportunities with a cloud-based digital strategy driving growth of the business. A well-designed hybrid or multi-cloud strategy delivers the widest choice of the latest technologies, including traditional and SaaS applications, new application and service development tools, artificial intelligence and machine learning frameworks, data and integration technologies all deployed to the right private cloud, public cloud, or hybrid environment. The right strategy also eases migration of traditional IT applications and data that need a cloud foundation to meet the demands of today’s everything-as-a-service digital world. 

The result is an integrated and agile digital platform that is the foundation of your company’s future. One that supports new business processes, delivers the agility provided by devops processes, scales services to meet widely variable workload demands and data flows and optimizes economics.  

But the journey is fraught   

However, with the explosion of cloud applications and the rise of hybrid and multi-cloud infrastructures, complexity has begun to overwhelm many organizationsChallenges include complex applications and infrastructure that are difficult to integrate with the latest technologies, ineffective business processes that don’t leverage the modern way of work, expensive data centers that divert focus from core processes and applications and operating models that don’t support cloud. Internal resistance to change and a lack of experience and resources further exacerbate those challenges.    

So, while the opportunities are boundless, the journey from traditional IT to a hybrid or multi-cloud environment can be difficult.  

The transformation solution  

At Rackspace, we’ve spent the past two decades helping a broad range of customers accelerate their transformation journeysAnd while each is unique, focusing on the six initiatives below will successfully push you further along the journey and enable you to deliver on the business drivers outlined above.   

  • Define the right cloud and digital strategies. With the right strategy and understanding where you are on the journey, you can drive efficiency through operations automation, grow revenue through innovation, modernize applications and realize cost savings by shifting towards agile, use-based, pay-as-you-go pricing models.
  • Accelerate your digital transformation. Turn transformation inhibitors such as earlier generation infrastructure, out of date operating models and resistance to change into opportunities to lead. Position yourself to accelerate your next evolution in delivering IT as a Service to your end users and customers through agile and integrated services. 
  • Power IT needs at every stage of your journeyWith technology evolving at an unprecedented rate, organizations taking a DIY approach are feeling the operational burden and cost of self-management. Develop a strategy to access the process knowledge, people and technology you need, when you need it, while relieving the burden of optimizing your applications and infrastructure, managing day-to-day operations, and maintaining security — so you can concentrate on transforming your business.
  • Modernize your applications, data, cloud and your organization. Being ready to capitalize on the digital economy requires more than a single IT solution. It requires a holistic view of application modernization — from human resource skill sets and new application development and integration paradigms to hybrid IT operating models. 
  • Secure your digital presence across applications, data, hybrid and multi-cloud services. Get a multi-layered security strategy that’s laser focused on your environment and able to provide detection, response and remediation when that environment is in jeopardy. Augment your team with security professionals who work with you every step of the way — from evaluating your existing environment, to creating, managing and monitoring your compliant cloud. 
  • Optimize spend across applications, data, security, hybrid and multi-cloud services. Self-managed cloud solutions are especially susceptible to runaway costs, thanks to misunderstanding workload usage, poor cloud architecture or poorly performing applications. The path to cloud cost optimization is to create a managed hybrid environment which enables economic optimization now and in the future. This requires a realistic assessment of the cost and ROI of different platform choices, and an understanding of what drives those economics.  

These transformative initiatives are the foundation to realizing your vision of becoming a leading digital enterprise.  

Be the leader who transforms your organization and IT by simplifying the implementation, integration, and management of SaaS, new and existing enterprise applicationsdeploying them on any public, private, hybrid or multi-cloud. Seize the opportunities managed cloud services and applications present to become an innovative digital business faster and with less risk. Enhance your ability to delight your customers, respond to the accelerating rate of opportunities and threats and drive new revenue and value streams. 


Pierre Fricke leads portfolio marketing for Rackspace. Pierre is responsible for developing and implementing the integrated portfolio narrative and messaging framework globally for our full services portfolio, specific segments, and core customer challenges, plus ownership of the integrated, customer-facing roadmap. Pierre Fricke joined Rackspace in 2018 as the company's senior director of product marketing for private cloud. He led a team working to expand knowledge of the opportunities private-cloud-as-a-service can offer enterprises as part of their digital transformations. Pierre co-led Rackspace’s effort to define and lead this new category and help companies understand how it fits into today’s multi-cloud world. Prior to Rackspace, Pierre worked for EnterpriseDB as vice president, product marketing, responsible for leading product marketing to build the business. He co-lead EDB’s effort to liberate companies from database vendor lock-in, allowing them to invest in other digital initiatives to drive growth. From 2005 through 2015 Pierre was director of product marketing for Red Hat JBoss Middleware products. He co-led product strategy and expansion into the application and data integration market. In 2008-2009, Pierre co-led the launches of JBoss SOA Platform and JBoss BRMS, which laid the foundation for a complete open source integration, process and decision automation strategy. By 2015, these products were the unit volume market leader or emerging strong challengers to long time incumbents as well as significant Red Hat businesses. Pierre was chief analyst for D.H. Brown Associates’ middleware and product lifecycle management infrastructure services in the early 2000s. Before that, he held a variety of engineering, engineering management, product management and strategy roles at IBM. You can find him on Linkedin at linkedin.com/in/pfricke, and Twitter @pfricke

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