Increasingly, more organizations across industries are considering AWS migration to reap the benefits of increased flexibility, advanced security, and a range of robust AWS services. According to Statista, the AWS segment is growing by at least 20% each year.
Despite all the potential advantages of the AWS cloud platform, its implementation tends to take time and effort. To achieve the highest possible return on AWS investment, companies should define the right implementation strategy and execute it properly, which can be tricky without deep and well-rounded AWS expertise.
Fortunately, turning to third-party AWS consultancy can significantly streamline and simplify the transition to AWS. This article specifies the role of AWS consultants and provides several considerations on how they can help a business ensure the maximum adoption ROI.
How Consultants Contribute to AWS-Related Projects
The main goal of any professional consultant is to guide an organization through all stages of AWS implementation. To be more specific, consultants help AWS adopters with the following:
AWS Strategy Selection
There are many strategies for migrating to AWS (typically referred to as 7Rs), and each is different in its complexity, cost, and effort needed. Choosing the right strategy is critical to the success of a project, and this is where a consultant’s expertise can come in handy.
After choosing a suitable migration strategy, a consultant helps execute it, both at business and technical levels. At this stage, a consultant integrates AWS into the organization’s existing infrastructure, configures AWS services and tools, and activates corporate user accounts.
Post-implementation, a consultant analyzes the newly deployed infrastructure to identify inefficiencies and bottlenecks, and then suggests potential improvements. For this, consultants typically use specialized tools for monitoring infrastructure performance and resources.
AWS Maintenance and Support
In case an organization requires ongoing infrastructure support, it can work with the consultant after the project completion. For instance, based on a client’s request, a consultant can implement specialized tools that enable automatic scaling of AWS-based infrastructure.
4 Ways Consultants Improve the ROI of AWS Adoption
Now that we have discussed the role of a consultant in AWS projects, let’s consider how exactly expert advisory can make AWS adoption cost-effective.
Estimating the ROIs of AWS
Given that AWS projects require a lot of investment, you need to first ensure that the game is worth the candle. While AWS is the most popular cloud platform in the world due to its flexibility and scalability, it may not necessarily be the best option for your particular business case, and a consultant can help confirm or deny that.
First, a consultant can analyze the organization’s business activities to identify major pain points and challenges. Then, drawing on the experience with similar industry cases, a consultant can help understand whether AWS solves these problems, and identify benefits an organization can gain from the adoption.
What is more, a consultant can help calculate AWS’s total cost of ownership (TCO), or the total cost of using AWS in the long run. Typically, when calculating TCO, consultants consider the following parameters:
- AWS licensing costs
- Hosting fees
- Cost of user training
- Cost of configurations and customizations
- Administration costs
- Data management costs
- Security costs
Well aware of all implementation costs, including hidden ones, an organization can accurately calculate the investments required during and after the adoption. This, together with information about AWS’s advantages, can help decision-makers determine whether the long-term benefits will justify the long-term costs.
Providing the Right Talent and Skills
Any large-scale cloud migration project requires a team with many different skills and competencies, and AWS-related ones are no exception. It can take months or even years of training to grow the required talent within an organization, which increases the expenses and reduces the migration’s cost-effectiveness.
Fortunately, since professional consultant companies typically have well-rounded talent pools, they can easily augment the client’s internal team. Thus, by hiring a consultant, an organization can quickly access the following help:
- Cloud Architects
Cloud architects create migration strategies and design target architectures for cloud solutions.
- Software Developers
Developers adapt workloads for the cloud architecture and resolve technical issues that arise during the migration.
- DevOps Engineers
DevOps professionals implement infrastructure-as-code (IaC) practices and deploy continuous integration and delivery (CI/CD) pipelines.
- QA Engineers
QA specialists are required to develop a testing strategy and verify migration success.
- Cyber Security Specialists
IT security experts determine the data security requirements and ensure that the migration follows data compliance policies.
- Project Managers
Project managers coordinate the work of the specialists mentioned above and help ensure that the migration stays within a determined budget and time frame.
Improving User Adoption
Because AWS is a complex technology solution, smooth employee adoption is a non-trivial goal for any adopter. If an organization fails to properly onboard employees, it won’t be able to fully capitalize on its AWS infrastructure.
A consultant can help an organization overcome this challenge as well by developing a change management strategy. This strategy details the overall scope of change within an organization, including changes in workflows, and helps implement AWS with minimal business disruption.
In addition, a consultant conducts AWS training for the company’s staff throughout the implementation. As an option, a consultant can provide educational materials tailored to the specifics of a unique business case, helping ensure that end users can fully utilize the AWS infrastructure and perform their duties.
Implementing the Right AWS Development Practices
Among other things, a consultant can select and implement practices and methodologies to streamline AWS use and improvement and, as a result, increase the project’s ROI. Here are some of these methodologies.
- AWS DevOps
While implementing DevOps is complex and costly, organizations can benefit from it in the long run. A consultant can help identify and implement the right AWS DevOps tools to streamline the launch of new features, automate and optimize the deployment process, and improve software quality, thus making projects more cost-effective.
- AWS FinOps
The FinOps methodology allows organizations to analyze and optimize their cloud spend on such solutions as AWS. In particular, a consultant can implement specialized AWS tools for companies to automate and streamline cost optimization operations.
While AWS is a powerful platform that benefits millions of businesses worldwide, the implementation process itself is highly complex and costly. Companies should involve certified consultants from the start to ensure the highest implementation ROI.
A professional consulting company can provide the skills and competencies required to complete an AWS project, thereby saving organizations time and money that would be otherwise spent on training or hiring new employees. Additionally, a consultant can help optimize AWS costs by implementing methodologies such as DevOps and FinOps.