(888) 208-0020 prs@auaus.net
A CIO’s reflections on moving a 40-year-old Company to the Cloud

A CIO’s reflections on moving a 40-year-old Company to the Cloud

Today cloud computing is driving much of the technological advancement. Any IT problem or solution is, one way or another, related to cloud computing. Because each of my previous postings has centered on the cloud, I realized it would be a good time to provide my viewpoint as the CIO of a forty-year-old firm that has recently moved to a 100% cloud-based portfolio. If you’re in the early phases of transition or have not yet begun to make the shift to the cloud, there is plenty to learn from those of us who have gone before you.

When I joined Aspect in early 2014, the IT environment was severely antiquated and, in so many cases, built on edge solutions and platforms. These very old versions of on-premise apps were highly customized and had not been upgraded or patched for a long time; in fact, IT lives in a world where changes are feared, both because of the frailties of the power grid and of the dread of being held liable if those updates resulted in an outage. Despite this, the maintenance expenses for goods we were not servicing, or upgrading were substantial.

The data in the prior systems were of low quality and were difficult for the user community to access. Furthermore, few systems were really connected, relying on dual input, date uploads, or human changes to keep data “in sync.” Simultaneously, our firm introduced an entirely new cloud-based product set, necessitating numerous changes in order administration, shipping, accounting, and finance. The moment has come for Aspect to move its internal processes to the cloud.
Developing Resources
Fortunately, our CEO and CFO saw the critical need to transform the IT function and capabilities, and they were willing to make the necessary expenditures. It was obvious to them and to me that the majority of our apps, data, and services would be moved to the Cloud. Our initial challenge was to convince the IT staff, which, while highly skilled, was stuck in the traditional way of doing things: move slowly and don’t damage anything. To be honest, this was a significant transformation effort. It requires swiftly developing a future vision and then finding team members who are both capable and eager to make that shift.

The skill sets required migrated away from developers, administrators, and DBAs and toward business analysts, data analysts, and integration specialists. People had to be retrained or repurposed in many situations, while in others, fresh personnel with cloud solution expertise had to be hired from outside.
Finding the Right Vendors
Before joining Aspect, a lot of time was spent by huge groups of individuals documenting “requirements.” Those with an experience in packaged software understand the need to focus on use cases and move fast to rapid prototyping, testing, integration, and data-related activities. It also took some effort to find suitable providers for our organization. Some of our vendors were unprepared for the complexity of our company and, in some cases, grossly understated it in their offers. One of the smartest decisions we made was to seek advice from boutique consulting companies with extensive knowledge of a certain product or technology. With this outside assistance, we were able to tap into a more extensive knowledge base and swiftly identify acceptable vendors and solutions for Aspect Software.
Reaping the Benefits
If I had to pick just one reason to drive our cloud migration, it would be speed to market in terms of making modifications and adding features and functionalities rapidly to empower our business. Lengthy implementation cycles and focusing on the underlying platforms are no longer the norm. Our attention is now focused on business dialogues, testing, and implementation. Aspect’s IT specialists may now focus on value-added projects while outsourcing system management and fundamental hardware/platform responsibilities. We reversed the 80/20 ratio, so now 80 percent of our time is spent on business-impacting tasks rather than maintenance.

We are also spared the burden of updates and fixes, thanks to our vendors’ enormous efforts in R & D. Rather than altering the program on our end, we spend our time engaging with our vendors to ensure that the functionality we want is included in their basic product.

Cloud apps have significantly improved our capabilities, particularly in terms of having interconnected systems with a unified data model and reporting platform. Before the cloud migration, practically none of our platforms were integrated other than through manual uploads; currently, nearly every system is linked together utilizing an integration toolset, ensuring that data flows uniformly between systems and then into our database system.

Why Do You Need IT Training to Enhance Productivity in a Firm?

Why Do You Need IT Training to Enhance Productivity in a Firm?

IT Employee training is necessary after updating software and implementing new technologies. Training is the process of improving employees’ skills, talents, and knowledge to accomplish their jobs well. It benefits both employers and workers of a company. If an employee is skillful, he will become more efficient and productive.

Hence, a process and analysis firm like the Applied Consulting Group can help in the IT training process and onboarding.
Upgrading Technology Requires Upgraded Skills
Let’s understand this with an example.

An Applied Consulting Group client is a top 50 accounting business with various offices and around 220 employees. They just implemented a new Microsoft 365 after migrating from a “conventional” remote desktop. This was an excellent chance to update some IT skills and assist users in making the most of their new IT environment.

Due to the wide range of expertise and skill among its user base, the company lacked a full-time internal IT training resource and faced a very broad training demand. Previously, training was delivered informally inside a department or office, and the link between training, adoption, and efficiency was not completely understood.

While partners were aware of the current predicament, they had not yet tackled training as a firm-wide initiative. Hence, there was a replication of bad working habits, with personnel applying their own solutions and fixes to the IT difficulties they faced, reducing the utility of systems and increasing simply avoidable user dissatisfaction. As a result, the IT staff could not provide precise input on underlying issues.
So, What is the Solution?
Today IT solution providers are making it easy for firms to transit through technical training and skills seamlessly. Whether you are looking for telecom audit, cloud services, VOIP telecom audit, or managed services, companies like Applied Consulting Group can offer it all.

For instance, in the case mentioned earlier, Applied Consulting Firm made certain that IT training was deployed precisely where it was needed to boost confidence and productivity. The goal was for it to be perceived as a productive use of time instead of an undesirable diversion from client-facing activities. It conducted a training requirements analysis to determine user demands and acquire an accurate notion of which areas to prioritize before designing and delivering a training plan to every user.

To keep the time commitment acceptable, ACG provided training to all users in precisely customized bitesize sessions. These workshops were well-attended, with positive comments from users at all levels. They have delivered an immediate return by giving some quick takeaways and shortcuts. Even for skilled users, expanding people’s understanding of the number of capabilities inside Excel, for example, has been a “game-changer.”

Take-up has been strong at all levels, resulting in a better grasp of how long any given piece of work should take to complete. In other circumstances, this has clarified previously unreasonable expectations, increasing worker trust.
The introduction of firm-specific user manuals has reduced frustration inside support lines. Staff now have more confidence in the fact that any technical questions they may have daily may be swiftly and readily resolved by referring to the material we have supplied.

Do you need a utility, telecom ,internet ,or data audit?

Why call Applied Utility Auditors
We work on contingency for the last 15 Years
We find savings for over 75% of our clients
We do not sell anything…… we simply find savings and refunds
Why use Applied Telecom Solutions.
Our team has been in the business of telecom, data, networks, Insurance Risk, and IT for over 35 years
We have installed over six thousand telecom systems
We are agnostic as far as vendor solutions
We do not sell you on a particular solution as does a vendor
We work with over 50 Channel Partners including AT&T, Verizon, Cisco, 8×8, Ring Central, Evolve, Microsoft Teams.
We answer the unasked questions

We help you select the correct managed services providers. This is just one of them.

O2-Time Leader in Gartner Magic Quadrant for Managed Network Services

MetTel, one of out major vendors, has been named a Leader in the 2021 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Managed Network Services for the second consecutive year. MetTel is the only US-based company in the Leaders Quadrant recognized for “Completeness of Vision” and ability to execute among all the participants in the study. Being a two-time leader in a Gartner Magic Quadrant is more than an honor; it’s a trend that says MetTel is considered an all-star among the giants of the IT communications industry, out-shining the likes of AT&T, Verizon and Lumen.

Why It’s Beneficial to Move Your IT and Telecom to the Cloud

Gone are the days when IT and Telecom companies used to depend on heavy infrastructure, including transmitters, cables, data centers, wires, etc. With the digital revolutionization and technology taking over almost every industry, most IT and Telecom services have adopted digital infrastructure and cloud-based applications.

Instead of storing their data into their physical hard drives or computers, most Telecom and IT services prefer to keep their data on the cloud. This is because the cloud offers them great functionality and flexibility and makes accessing data more convenient.

So, if you are thinking of whether or not to move your IT services and Telecom services to the cloud, here are some reasons why it will be the best decision you can take!
1.Easy Data Recovery in Case of Any Disaster
One of the biggest benefits of moving to the cloud is that it provides you with excellent disaster recovery solutions. When you keep all the business-related documents and data into your company’s computers and hard disks, you always have a risk of losing them due to malfunctioning, malware attacks, and other emergencies.

However, when you move to the cloud, your data gets stored on a secure network. So, you can always recover your documents and every single valuable information without any hassle. All you would need is a computer or laptop and internet access.
2.It is Highly Flexible
Generally, IT and Telecom services have large volumes of data to store. And storing all of it into physical storage devices can become very inconvenient and expensive. Thus, IT and Telecom companies need a vast storage space that is both flexible and affordable. That’s where the cloud comes into the picture!

The cloud offers you a massive amount of storage space that you can use to store all your organizational data, files, documents, and whatnot! Furthermore, when you keep your data and other resources in the cloud, it can be accessed from any device as long as it has a stable internet connection.

The cloud also gives you and your employees the flexibility to work from anywhere and from the device of their choice. And as the prominence of remote work and work-from-home is increasing at a rapid pace, moving to the cloud is a smart idea!
3.High Data Security
Another incredible benefit of migrating to the cloud is that it provides high security to your data and digital infrastructure. The cloud uses encryption to protect all your business’s confidential and sensitive data. In addition, the hosts diligently monitor every aspect of your data security, and you can also opt for special unique security settings as per your business needs.
4.It is Cost-Efficient
When you opt for cloud services and move your resources and important documents to the cloud, you no longer have to spend money purchasing storage devices, utilities, and other things required in traditional computing.

The cloud also reduces the need to build and operate data centers, manage on-site servers and hire additional staff. In this way, you’ll be able to save a lot of money that you can use in other business operations.
5.Easy Implementation
Many people and business owners avoid moving to the cloud because they believe it has a complicated implementation process. However, that’s not true, at least not entirely! While some complex steps need to be followed, the major part of cloud implementation is pretty simple. All you need is a well-planned approach. And, you can always ask your service provider for all kinds of assistance.
Summing Up
Considering all the amazing benefits, flexibility, and convenience the cloud provides, there is absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t move into it. Cloud technology has dramatically changed the way businesses function today. So, in order to stay relevant and have the edge over your competitors, migrating your IT and Telecom services to the cloud is important.

If your company has not tapped into the benefits of cloud services yet, it is the best time to get started! If you are looking for a reliable and experienced cloud service provider, Applied Consulting Group can help you with it.