Cloud Workload Strategy

What is the Right Workload Strategy for my Business?

June 20, 2022

Optimal Workload Strategy

As a CIO or Infrastructure Leader, you are responsible for determining the optimal location for business workloads. With various options available, including on-premises, cloud, edge, or hybrid cloud, it is critical to recognize and overcome common pitfalls when designing a workload placement strategy. Although “cloud-first” may be your fallback, a better option may be “cloud-first, but not always.” The best workload placement is unique for your organization.

Critical Factors when Evaluating your Workload

All workloads are different, each with its own set of business requirements and benefits. Without considering the factors below when evaluating an application’s or service’s eventual placement, negative business impacts could far outweigh the benefits of any migration. Once expectations are defined and understood, the discussion of location or provider can begin. 

The evaluation criteria below that may impact a successful deployment focus on the application requirements relative to business expectations, not specific to one provider or location. 

Compliance — 

Are there regulatory or compliance issues with this service, and if so, are providers certified at a level that would satisfy audit and compliance requirements?

Data protection — 

Are there data protection, access, backup, or compliance issues with the inputs or outputs of this application, and can providers resolve these issues?

Security — 

How critical are this application’s security and access control requirements, and can they be implemented and managed to satisfy internal corporate security requirements?

Latency — 

How much impact will latency affect application acceptance and customer usage patterns when operational? Will reduced latency (or variable performance) affect customer satisfaction or your business’s reputation?

Recovery time — 

What RTOs/RPOs are required for this application, and can they be satisfied with an external provider or only via internal processes?

Service continuity — 

How important is service continuity to your success? Is the perception of 100% availability required, and if so, can providers or the providers’ solutions be structured to deliver this at a reasonable cost?

Performance — 

What is the impact of poor or variable application performance? Are tools available for remote monitoring and problem resolution?

Data location — 

Are there any issues with guaranteed data location? For example, is a location outside of the US acceptable? 

Availability — 

What are the availability goals? What impact is there on business operations if they cannot be met?  

Scalability — 

Does the workload have variable utilization patterns that make scaling up and down necessary? Can the deployment options support such scaling effectively?

Cost — 

Are there business drivers for deployment (depreciation of assets, tax benefits) for particular deployment locations? Can these cost drivers be met without detriment to the other decision criteria?

How to Develop a Workload Strategy

If you need help developing your workload strategy, contact us to assess your current IT environment to assist you in building a strategy that works for you. Our professionals can ensure your workloads are appropriately placed to meet your security, cost, and reliability goals and, most importantly, make sense for your business.