Why the Cloud Is the Quickest Way to Business Agility

While cloud is not a magic wand, it pushes companies to become more agile -- and successfully compete.

Kevin Sullivan, Global and US Oracle Alliance Leader, PwC

November 7, 2022

4 Min Read
birds formed in an arrow representing trending up through the clouds
BitsandSplits via Adobe Stock

How could a leading communication and collaboration platform go from hosting approximately 10 million daily meetings in December 2019 to a staggering 300 million by April 2020? This question becomes more perplexing considering that, at the time, the platform’s system landscape lacked integrated processes and functionality to support these and future business needs.

Where did the ability to scale for this hypergrowth while supporting M&A and further expansion come from? Agility through cloud technology. Implementing a modern cloud platform delivered more than 50 integrations and allowed the company to adopt leading practices and automation to drive higher process maturity across all business functions.

From total cost of ownership to total business value -- this is how the cloud has evolved. What started out as a way to reduce infrastructure expenses has become a competitive advantage imperative for scale, as well as delivering customer and employee experience.

While a great deal of the cloud’s value remains untapped, agility is having a moment. After one of the most significant disruptions of our time, the cloud has emerged as the way to resilience.

An Emerging Cloud?

Yes. We’ve been talking about (and working on) the cloud for a long time, so how can it be considered emerging?

Changes in strategy are driving this recent development, unlocking more value. What was once a siloed and piecemeal migration to the cloud is now a more holistic approach, resulting in full visibility of a company’s data leading to greater insights.

Applications are also now ready for the cloud. We’re seeing data and analytics capabilities that did not exist even a few years ago. As point solutions have become more prevalent, the infrastructure itself has improved along with it. What we have now are richer data and more robust tools at our disposal.

The cloud’s dynamic environment gives companies the ability to be agile and responsive, driving even greater efficiencies than legacy environments ever could.

This is where a leading hotel and entertainment company recently found itself. Their manual processes were automated, and new functional competencies were gained across reporting and analytics, security and controls, tax and financial transformation.

Moving to Oracle Cloud was critical to their growth strategy and supports multiple lines of business: gaming, hotels, food/beverage, retail, conventions, and joint ventures. A new flexible financial platform enabled the organization to support future expansion plans, reduce IT expenditures and realize additional ROI within three years of their initial investment.

Modernizing Your Cloud Strategy for Greater Agility

With the promise of remaining current, the cloud allows organizations to adjust and enhance. But it also means taking advantage of new capabilities to quickly realize incremental advances that help them be more competitive in the digital economy.

That’s why applying cloud technology for a more agile business requires a modernized strategy -- a single infrastructure tied back to the business strategy as opposed to just thinking about technology and the disparate systems used to capture data.

This includes connecting data and consolidating it into a single place that can be leveraged by multiple paths of the organization, which is key to agility. A view of real-time data enables companies to react quickly to, and more importantly, predict customer and employee needs to differentiate itself from its competitors.

Businesses that are well into their cloud journeys find that it's also a way to focus on what they’re really good at (versus running a data center).

Start at the End

A modernized cloud strategy starts with creating the business case, but from the end state architecture. Ask what's the problem you are trying to solve or the benefit you want to realize: What will it look like when you complete the migration?

Conceptualize a roadmap to achieve that end state as part of the assessment upfront. Look at it by process and avoid the age-old siloed decisions that live within functions. Think end-to-end across the business. Envision how to build an organization that will continuously improve and innovate on these platforms once they are in place.

Without Agility, Innovation Stalls

The cloud is not a magic wand, but it enables companies to be more efficient and effective -- ultimately, more agile. With agility comes the ability to not only be prepared for what’s next but also lead the way and innovate.

Through our alliance with Oracle, our team has helped large enterprises across industries extend and expand via an advanced cloud platform -- new capabilities and continuous improvement for not just what we're getting today, but also what we can realize tomorrow. That full value will manifest through further digital transformation as the cloud is the gateway to all digital technologies.

Think IOT, machine learning, AI, blockchain and tools that have yet to be invented for use cases we can only imagine right now. We're just beginning to realize the potential of what the cloud has to offer through these platforms and more.

About the Author(s)

Kevin Sullivan

Global and US Oracle Alliance Leader, PwC

Kevin Sullivan has worked in the Oracle ecosystem as a leader for over 20 years. Starting as a software and services company controller sponsoring an Oracle implementation in preparation for a public offering, he became hooked on technology consulting.

Next, Kevin and his twin brother, Stephen Sullivan, PwC Digital Risk Technology Leader, started an Oracle consulting practice at Rapidigm, a small US services company. After the sale of Rapidigm, Kevin led the Oracle Alliance and Competency for Fujitsu America. Kevin then led the Oracle Competency and Alliance for CapGemini.

In 2012, Kevin joined PwC's US Oracle Competency where he has played several key Oracle roles over the past 8 years. His current roles are Global and US Oracle Alliance Leader.

Never Miss a Beat: Get a snapshot of the issues affecting the IT industry straight to your inbox.

You May Also Like

More Insights