Setting the Pace for Financial Services Cloud Adoption

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Setting the Pace for Financial Services Cloud Adoption case study

About the Client

A provider of technologies for the payment systems and central infrastructure of a major financial market in Southeast Asia embraced cloud to further its vision of empowering the country’s digital economy.

We supported the development and uptake of a cloud-based platform that provides a strong foundation for mass cloud adoption.  

  • The new cloud platform embodies best practices for the highly regulated financial services sector.
  • Technical and non-technical employees have bought into cloud and recognise its potential to improve productivity and security.
  • Long-term objectives were accounted for in technical decision-making, and employees have been upskilled with cloud capabilities.

Challenge: Embracing Cloud in a Highly Regulated Sector

Cloud transformation is a strategic priority for this payment technology provider. However, cloud adoption at scale can be complex and difficult. This is especially true in highly regulated sectors where stringent standards for governance, auditing and risk management must be maintained.

Before embarking on mass cloud adoption, the decision was taken to migrate a pilot application to Amazon Web Services (AWS) using cloud-native technologies. A key goal was to build confidence within the team and across the wider financial services sector. The chosen application enables quick and secure card payments online, so it’s a good option for illustrating the business benefits that cloud adoption can bring.

Recognising that sophisticated cloud engineering would be required to ensure compliance and scalability, Sourced Group, an Amdocs company (Sourced), was selected as the AWS consulting partner. This decision was based on the quality and experience of our consultants, coupled with their deep understanding of central bank requirements and a proven track record in highly regulated industries.

“This cloud adoption needed to deliver tangible business benefits such as quicker time to market and improved development cycles. It also had to be secure, compliant and reliable. We helped the client to achieve this while upskilling the internal team to become self-sufficient.”

Jon Eilerman, Senior Client Success Manager
Sourced Group an Amdocs Company

Solution: Combining Technical Expertise with Sector Knowledge

Collaboration was a critical success factor in this engagement. Consultants and engineers from Sourced worked closely with the client’s internal team, making joint decisions on technical matters such as the AWS Landing Zone design. The teams worked as one, taking part in stand-ups, planning sessions and retrospectives together as well as using the same Agile tools. This ensured cohesion and allowed employees to learn new skills while building confidence in the support of mission-critical cloud workloads.

Together, we developed a multi-stage program to ensure the application’s successful migration to AWS. It covered the implementation of governance, leadership and applied security features in line with industry requirements and the client’s own policies.

Core Foundations

The initial phase of work established core principles for the migration, leveraging templates from Sourced’s Cloud at Scale Core Foundations program. Risk, security and compliance standards are baked into these resources, so the client’s team had the freedom to use advanced cloud techniques such as infrastructure as code knowing that important considerations were accounted for. This foundation will provide a blueprint for additional applications in the future.

Cloud Enablement and Enhancement

We introduced automation and continuous delivery to enable quick and efficient production on the new platform. So, the client benefits from a consistent, repeatable approach which enables easier maintenance with security continually updated in line with best practice.

Architecture Review Council

Sourced encouraged the client to set up an architecture review council (ARC) to examine this application and future cloud projects. The ARC oversees critical areas such as technology choices and adherence to standards. Its goal is to improve the overall quality of cloud-based assets.

Building Skills and Confidence

A core objective was the empowerment of the internal infrastructure DevOps team, which grew from two to eight people during the engagement. Working alongside Sourced accelerated the team’s understanding of best practices in managing public cloud infrastructure, as well as developing skills and confidence to build and manage workloads in the public cloud. The application development team was also mentored, with Sourced nurturing independence as the team took steps to increase delivery velocity. Throughout the migration, we discussed potential solutions (and associated trade-offs) openly and honestly.

Alongside this, Sourced worked proactively with the internal risk and audit team to ease the transition to the cloud. Sessions were held to outline the architectural standards of the cloud infrastructure, demonstrating how they complement and align with regulatory requirements.

“The outcome of the engagement is a robust cloud platform that will add significant value to the client’s organisation. Importantly, security best practice is baked in, which gives the team added assurance and peace of mind.”

Jon Eilerman, Senior Client Success Manager
Sourced Group an Amdocs Company

Outcome: a Strong Foundation for Long-Term Cloud Transformation

The cloud-based platform for the online card payment application will underpin the organisation’s longer-term cloud ambitions. It leverages advanced cloud capabilities to maximise business benefits while adhering to stringent standards for compliance, risk management and governance. From a technical perspective, it exemplifies best practices for financial services workloads in the cloud. As such, it provides an effective blueprint for future cloud adoption.

Through investment in its cloud platform, the payment technology provider is driving its own technical vision and strategy. This allows it to promote efficiency across the entire organisation through initiatives such as reduced use of proprietary database platforms, and adoption of agility-enhancing managed services such as containerisation (ECS), NoSQL databases (DynamoDB) and Managed Kafka for Event Streaming.

Positive outcomes of this engagement extend beyond technical matters. Sourced has also demonstrated the exciting potential of cloud-based environments to the client’s wider team and stakeholders. The engagement has shown that with effective implementation of cloud-native tools it’s possible to be more innovative and productive while improving standards for security and compliance. Our mentoring and training enabled the internal team to take greater responsibility for the platform as the work progressed.

“We worked in a unified way and focused on achieving outcomes that served the client’s long-term goals. Everything was completed on schedule within a 12-month timeframe and the decisions we made together will streamline future growth and development in the cloud.”

Jon Eilerman, Senior Client Success Manager
Sourced Group an Amdocs Company