IDC’s Cloud Maturity Model traces the increasing value and investment of cloud computing across five stages, from Ad Hoc to Optimized. The sections that follow feature descriptions of the stages and highlights of the fundamental outcomes of each stage,
Stage 1: Ad Hoc
Companies are beginning the exploration process to increase their awareness of cloud technology options, key considerations, and cloud’s contribution toward IT efficiency. There is limited enterprisewide awareness of these activities, and some instances may be unauthorized. Some are turning to cloud because of the immediacy of the need and the ability to procure capacity with minimal monthly or one-time investments that require little or no outside approval.
Stage 2: Opportunistic
Companies are experimenting with more standardized offerings and developing shortterm improvements regarding access to IT resources via cloud. They are also promoting buy-in to cloud computing across the company and acknowledging the need for a company wide approach. They are testing their ability to transition workloads from existing traditional in-house or outsourced IT deployments as well as new ones. They consider cloud for new solutions or isolated computing environments with minimal impact on existing business processes, lower implementation costs, and/or faster delivery for commodity resources.
Stage 3: Repeatable
Companies are enabling more agile access to IT resources through aggressive standardization, identifying cloud best practices, and increasing governance. Business and IT users are beginning to rely on self-service portals to access cloud services based on cost and quality of service as well as to automate approvals and workflows that are necessary to rapidly provision and activate services. Users have access to a wider range of resources with more predictability, transparency into the cost of those resources, and the ability to more easily forecast their IT resource requirements.
Stage 4: Managed
Companies are expanding the boundaries of how and why they use cloud. This is a consistent, best practice enterprisewide approach to cloud, speeding iterative improvement cycles to increase cloud adoption and business value. Companies in this stage are orchestrating service delivery across an integrated set of resources and collaborating internally and externally to support their future technology needs. Users can procure additional services, add new users, and increase or decrease compute capacity as needed through self-service portals, expanding the organization’s ability to operate not just more efficiently but also more strategically.
Stage 5: Optimized
Companies are driving business innovation through seamless access to IT resources from internal and external service providers and making informed decisions based on the true cost and value of those services. They are using cloud to lower the costs and speed up the delivery process. The business impact is most noticeable for new initiatives as well as for high business value or highly innovative projects, where some level of customization of IT resources is critical and risk sharing creates an environment that fosters innovation. These organizations have the ability to leverage their IT capabilities as a component of new products and services. IT is an equal partner in achieving long-term business goals, and IT is responsible for ensuring the successful delivery of IT capabilities throughout the life cycle of those technologies.
Defining Progress A cross People, Process, and Technology
IDC track the five stages through people, process, and technology, with eight measures that are applicable to private, public, and hybrid cloud deployments. They have chosen these measures because we believe that they require deliberate attention and change to maximize the value from cloud investments.
People: They have segmented “people” into two core measures — IT roles and business roles — because we see an evolution in how the IT and business groups develop separately and in their increasing coordination through the adoption of cloud. Through the five stages, we consider attributes such as skills, culture, leadership, organizational structure, and interdepartmental relationships for these two measures.
Process: They have segmented “process” into three core measures:
Vendor management: They have selected this measure because organizations will need to change the quantity and mix of vendors that they work with as well as the way that they work with them, considering attributes such as procurement, contract definition, compliance, incident management, innovation, and business continuity.
Service management: They have selected this measure because managing cloud services requires a transition from a traditional model to an end-to-end service delivery focus that defines and manages IT capabilities in terms of policies and service-level agreements (SLAs). Elements of service management include service definitions, configuration standardization, SLAs and policies, service performance and consumption measurement, forecasting, and chargeback.
Architecture, security, and integration: They have selected this measure because cloud represents a fundamental shift in the way that IT environments are designed and managed. Cloud environments rely on welldefined standards to enable workload and information portability across a wide range of heterogeneous internal and external resources. The ability to create, deploy, and optimize end-to-end services that can fully exploit the self-service, portability, and elasticity capabilities that are provided by cloud
architectures is fundamental to achieving a mature cloud environment.
Technology management: They have segmented technology into three core measures because we see adoption of cloud-enabled platform, infrastructure, and software occurring at different rates. However, we also expect the technology to continue to evolve over time, so these measures are less about the technology itself and more about management, considering attributes such as adoption rates and ease of adoption, deployment models (public, private, or hybrid), interdependencies, technology maturity and risk, and transparency into a vendor’s technology stack.
The three core measures are:
Platform: Encompasses functionality enabled by application development, testing, database, analytics, middleware and related packaged, open source, and custom software including public PaaS services.
Infrastructure: Encompasses functionality enabled by physical and virtual systems, storage, and network hardware and public IaaS services as well as functionality enabled by packaged, open source, and custom software and SaaS services providing infrastructure software functionality including operating systems, hypervisors, cloud system software, security and identity management, system management, storage management, and network management.
Software: Encompasses functionality enabled by packaged, open source, and custom application software including SaaS-based application software solutions. Examples include collaborative apps, content apps, CRM, ERM, SCM, ops and manufacturing apps, and engineering apps