AWS Smart Business Blog

Cloud Benefits: From ‘Total’ to ‘True’ Cost of Ownership

For small and medium businesses, cost shouldn’t be a significant barrier when evaluating the benefits of migrating to AWS. In fact, the most common questions typically include:

  • “How much will the migration cost?”
  • “What do we need to account for in ongoing costs?”
  • “What is the best way for us to establish our budget to satisfy future needs?”

These questions point to understanding the Total Cost of Ownership or TCO of their cloud migration. There are standard tools to calculate this widely used by AWS and partners to demonstrate the basics. However, to truly understand the value of the cloud, you need to dive a little bit deeper than performing a simple TCO analysis. A more comprehensive view takes the TCO output, includes your business needs today, your known plans to expand, and accounts for how flexible your cloud solution will need to be to adapt in the future. We call this the “true” cost of ownership.

Logicworks is an AWS Premier Partner focused on small and medium businesses, and we have helped hundreds of customers migrate and operate on AWS successfully at scale for nearly 10 years.

Undoubtedly, we’ve learned how the cloud can save businesses money compared to on premise solutions. AWS customers can automatically scale storage, add services to meet their specific needs, and only pay for what they use. This is one of the major benefits of migrating to the cloud. Cloud savings can quickly accumulate as businesses reduce capital expenditures and operational costs, but there’s more to cloud benefits than simply better plumbing.

We help customers understand the extensive benefits of AWS and how to align them to support long-term business objectives. Our true cost of ownership considers:

  • Gaps or deficiencies in customers’ current environment that hamper growth, performance, and efficiency like technical debt of legacy code and databases.
  • How to improve or modernize the current environment to make both internal and external facing applications more efficient to accelerate growth.
  • How the cloud can support competitive advantages and improve ability to meet customer demand.

Managing technical debt

A significant challenge for many companies evaluating a cloud migration is how to alleviate and/or prevent incurring additional technical debt. This can include applications that are outdated but relied on for business-critical functions or siloed databases that house important information. Often companies do not have the in-house expertise to figure out how to safely migrate this data and struggle to justify the need and benefits to prioritize the effort.

Fully capitalizing on the cloud includes understanding how deficiencies in your current environment can be addressed to maximize cloud benefits. Getting immediate access to all of your business information and removing the need to manage, secure, and scale legacy databases can help transform the business and better prepare for future growth.

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Take customer onboarding from months to hours

Once deficiencies are identified, the most exciting step is designing and building for the future. Businesses that have felt limited by their IT infrastructure and applications—or perpetually behind the necessary maintenance and refresh schedule—are suddenly free to reimagine how they can use the cloud to get ahead.

For example, we recently helped a medium-sized Software as a Service (SaaS) company with their AWS migration. In our true cost analysis, we uncovered that it took them 60 to 90 days to onboard a new customer. After we reviewed the application, identified the deficiencies, and optimized the environment, the company could onboard customers in 24-48 hours. This significantly improved their time to revenue and transformed their business.

This is just one example of how a cloud migration can transform a business. Imagine the potential your business has just waiting to be unlocked.

Build customer credibility with cloud compliance

Another way to evaluate the benefits of a migration is to identify new business and value streams, remove barriers to enter new markets, and get to revenue faster. A common barrier that many companies face is security and compliance. Compliance requirements can vary globally and change regularly.

Moving to the cloud can help provide better mechanisms to meet governance requirements. The audit process to get and maintain compliance certification is time consuming and resource intensive. We undergo six annual third party audits in PCI-DSS, SOC 1, SOC 2, HIPAA, HITRUST, and ISO 27001 to help enable compliance for industries such as financial services, healthcare, retail, SaaS, and media.

One of our healthcare customers was able to fast-track their response to a hospital request for proposal because they could prove that they met the data security and compliance requirements with comprehensive documentation ahead of the competition. The cloud can help you build compliance credibility and improve how you run your business.

Discover, Assess, Design

Sometimes the hardest part of the cloud migration is selling the benefits internally. Cloud migration can be complex, and if you don’t have the right expertise, it can be perceived as high risk. One way we help customers get over this hurdle is to run through an established process to determine the impact of building, managing, and optimizing in the cloud. We use what we call a DAD model—Discover, Assess, Design.

The Logicworks DAD model provides a comprehensive view of the migration project to meet specific business outcomes. We conduct a number of technical deep dive sessions, workshops, or an immersion day across various teams before we create the migration proposal. With these sessions, we assess mission critical applications’ cloud readiness. We then provide a design that includes how to rebuild or re-platform applications to quickly get the best possible return and ensure you have what you need to meet future goals five or ten years down the road. The end result is a true cost of ownership which incorporates not just the immediate business needs, but how the cloud can be put to work for your business in the long run.

Learn how an AWS Partner can help you with an implementation strategy

Taking cloud savings one step further to understand the true value to your business is possible with the right expertise. Small and medium-sized businesses stand to get out-sized returns when viewing the cloud as a means to optimize and future-proof to become more efficient, more competitive, and grow faster. Read how you can work with an AWS Partner to meet your needs.

Disclaimer: The content and opinions in this post are those of the third-party author and AWS is not responsible for the content or accuracy of this post.