Empowering Board-Level Cloud Decisions: Leveraging Strategic Design For Success in a Malaysian Bank

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Case Study - Empowering Board-Level Cloud Decisions: Leveraging Strategic Design For Success in a Malaysian Bank

About the Client

A leading financial institution, headquartered in Malaysia, is committed to the provision of innovative, customer-centric solutions. As it adapts to the digital evolution of the financial services landscape, it is looking to take a cloud-first approach. The goal is to drive operational efficiency, improve agility, and enhance competitiveness.

Sourced Group an Amdocs Company (Sourced), was engaged to help the bank establish the North Star for its cloud strategy. Senior decision makers needed a clear vision of the intended outcome before detailed planning and largescale cloud adoption could commence. We delivered:

  • A series of workshops to assess the bank’s existing operating model and organisational structure.
  • A cloud operating model with blueprint and roadmap to present the business case for cloud in a pragmatic way, empowering the board to make effective decisions.
  • Guidance on foundational components of the cloud strategy, such as establishing a Cloud Centre of Excellence (CCoE) and optimising cloud financial operations (FinOps).

Challenge: Multi-Cloud Approach Heightens Complexity

To enhance operational resiliency, the bank requires a multi-cloud approach involving Azure and AWS. This further complicates an already challenging cloud adoption scenario. Building a team equipped with the necessary skills and experience to migrate, modernize, and operate applications ensures smooth progress and minimizes risks in the journey towards success. Our workshops have identified skills gaps and operational issues that need to be resolved prior to commencing cloud adoption in earnest. For instance, to ensure sufficient capabilities across the two cloud platforms, the bank needs to train existing team members and recruit new employees with specialised expertise.

Our discovery sessions also revealed fundamental organisational challenges, such as limited knowledge sharing which leads to overlapping initiatives from different teams and regions. Finding ways to address these factors is essential to ensure the current operating model evolves as part of the cloud transition.

Solution: A Pragmatic Approach to Ensure Comprehensive Coverage

Armed with insights from our assessments and workshops we designed a contextualised solution outlining a phased approach to cloud adoption, the organisational design for a Cloud Centre of Excellence (CCoE), and a cloud operating model.

The CCoE is a core component of any cloud adoption programme, and it will play a mission critical role in this bank’s multi-cloud strategy. It is a centralised body which aims to drive best practices, ensure compliance, and facilitate efficient use of cloud resources. Employees involved in the CCoE require a clear charter outlining strategic outcomes, roles, responsibilities, and the balance between governance, operations, and education. The main purpose is to drive business value by removing silos, promoting knowledge sharing, standardising processes, and enabling the application team to be more agile.

At a high level, our recommended CCoE structure comprises a dedicated cloud adoption lead, an advisory board, and four core teams. These include platform architecture and operations, education and advocacy, application enablement, and business and product (see Figure 1).

ccoe structure diagram
Figure 1. Sourced-recommended CCoE structure with four core teams

The platform architecture and operations team will focus on building core services and foundational elements to support the cloud ecosystem. Meanwhile, the application enablement team supports the design and build of specific applications. The education and advocacy team handles cloud-related training and skill development while the business and product team ensure major application portfolios, financial aspects, and other business needs are considered. The advisory board includes representatives from various areas within the bank, to ensure their views are considered in shaping and executing the cloud strategy.

Implementing this recommended CCoE structure will enable the bank to boost team engagement, increase productivity and improve quality of work, while enhancing knowledge sharing and collaboration. It will help drive cohesion and provide a clear direction for cloud adoption and transformation.

We also outlined recommendations for a cloud operating model. This will play a critical role defining how people, processes, and technology interact to enable and support cloud adoption. The primary goal is to facilitate the efficient and secure use of cloud services while providing a consistent and manageable environment. We suggested a centralised model, to consolidate the management and oversight of cloud resources under a single team. This approach will ensure consistency and standardisation across cloud environments. A controlled self-service model is recommended to enable and empower application teams while ensuring compliance through guardrails.

Lastly, we provided a strategy for the bank to manage and optimise their cloud financial operations (FinOps). This covered areas such as tagging for cloud asset management and tracking, rightsizing and optimising cloud resource utilisation, and how to leverage cloud service provider funding programmes to significantly offset the cost of cloud adoption and application migration.

Outcome: Board Members Empowered to make Effective Decisions

This engagement focused on helping the bank understand the extent of cloud adoption challenges, before outlining strategies to resolve them. It was a strong and effective collaboration which laid the groundwork for future technical implementation in a multi-cloud context. The CCoE and cloud operating model recommendations defined the North Star for cloud adoption, allowing the board to act with confidence and assurance when faced with critical decisions. With these high-level plans in place, the bank is well positioned to move into implementation. We’re looking forward to supporting this next exciting phase of their cloud journey.