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Making a new home in Cloud for Financial Services

Thinking of moving to the cloud as finding and shifting in a new house. That can make an impact.

For any organization, cloud adoption can be a daunting process and the ones that have found a solution aren’t really able to derive value from it. Don’t you think the entire process is just as like finding a new house for yourself. And the amount of preparation and forethought that go into the decision and the move itself: budgeting, square footage, features you can’t live without, sorting out which of your possessions fit in the new space, ensuring there’s room for guests or additions to the family and, most importantly, knowing when you have outgrown the space. 

These are some problems we hear from financial services organizations as well. They usually ask themselves when they should move to a proof of concept or a full-scale project on the cloud. How much capacity do they need, and how can they optimize their cloud infrastructure to derive real value? Which legacy approaches do they need to leave behind? And above all why they need cloud in the first place.  

With this rational thinking behind cloud adoption one can ensure an effective and efficient transition. 

Plan your move with these four steps to a successful cloud migration 

Here are four ways financial institutions can ensure an optimal cloud migration that delivers benefits to employees, processes, clients and the organization itself.    

Always its people-first approach. It’s easy to get consumed by the technical aspects of a cloud migration: tooling, upgrades, depreciations, multi-cloud options, application programming interfaces (API), security, etc. However, one needs to balance these technology concerns with the business changes the cloud entails and enables, both to reduce costs associated with the technology infrastructure and optimize revenue and profit margins. 

We at ACI Infotech have a financial services client to implement a financial reporting solution that incorporates a cloud-native data management component. Keeping in mind business stakeholders’ needs for dashboards and reports that enable decision making based on a variety of key indicators, we introduced SAP HANA cloud that could answer all these challenges of client data of various sizes from multiple locations.  

Businesses can put people first in various ways while also reducing costs and cycle times, one of which would be to automate maintenance activities. One of the largest benefits of the cloud is the ability to create resources with API calls or embedded APIs in tools and software. This puts the focus on the business outcomes rather than the updates, themselves. By automating repetitive tasks, people can focus on value-added activities, which ensures the business is taking full advantage of the cloud.  

Prime focus should be on delivering value and business outcomes . Clearly define why you are moving to the cloud in the first place, with the help and agreement of key stakeholders. Document the business use case and continually update it to keep up with new businesses and technology circumstances, including business engagement, automation, data, value, architecture and visibility. Organizations that understand and document cloud migration goals regularly and in cadence are best positioned to adapt quickly to change. 

It’s imperative to understand that the simple act of moving to the cloud is not a guarantee of cost savings — in fact, it can initially increase the tech investment. Additional measures can mitigate the cost increase, however. We have worked with a large financial and services client that had partially moved to the cloud to reduce its costs by 50%. We completely migrated them to SAP HANA cloud, and now it no longer needed to maintain its legacy environment, which not only reduced costs but also enabled additional value-added capabilities and innovation via cloud-based automation and AI

By clearly defining business use cases, organizations can better understand where cloud investments should be made, as well as when to stop, start and continue these investments. For instance, we worked with a top-10 financial institution to augment its data and cloud capabilities to achieve a more holistic view of its data to enable more consistent cross-selling and upselling of products and services across channels and achieve greater share of wallet. 

The firm improved how it models customer profiles to enable highly targeted marketing campaigns, while also improving the customer experience across the products and services portfolio. We then partnered with the FI to centralize the environment that allows internal business units to easily analyze and access data. 

Re-imagine to Cloud-Native environment . Many clients try to move all of their on-premises infrastructure to the cloud simultaneously. This is the equivalent of trying to move all of your studio apartment belongings to a house, where they are ill-fitting and stylistically inappropriate. To optimize cloud scalability, FIs must realize that architectural decisions for databases, firewalls and security that are used on-premises are often suboptimal when deployed on the cloud. 

While businesses might think they’re avoiding disruption by using their on-premises approaches, doing so ultimately inflates costs, reduces scalability and eventually reduces business outcomes. Reviewing cloud-native tooling and capabilities results in a more cost-effective and secure solution overall. If the decision is a third-party tool, make sure it can be automated to avoid errors, additional cycle time and excess headcount to the cloud platform. 

Maintain Agility . Environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) are three central factors in measuring the sustainability and societal impact of an investment in a company or business. FIs are not only measuring other companies’ ESG but are also being measured on their own ESG compliance. The growing demand for cloud infrastructure has led to a dramatic increase in energy consumption.  

To achieve greener cloud computing, organizations must include low-power consumption as a requirement in their design, production and use of digital spaces. A green cloud solution such as Dynamic Voltage Frequency Scaling can reduce energy consumption and increase resource utilization, leading to energy savings, significant reductions in enterprise operational costs and greater business value. 

Financial organizations can more effectively and efficiently serve clients with a streamlined cloud migration that transitions people, processes and the organization itself in a way that optimizes business opportunities. By viewing cloud migration in a business light, they’ll ensure a bright future in their new cloud home.  

And this can be toppled by adoption of SAP S4 HANA cloud that aligns with the above vision of financial organizations as it makes the process easy for you, provides multi-tier data storage, including a built-in data lake, you can scale computing and storage separately, centralized and 360 access to data and many such easy to adopt features.