Introduction - An Overview of the AWS Cloud Adoption Framework - Version 2

Introduction

Cloud computing introduces a significant shift in how technology is obtained, used, and managed. It also shifts how organizations budget and pay for technology services. Cloud computing benefits organizations by giving them the ability to trade capital expense for variable expense, gain advantage from massive economies of scale, make agile capacity decisions, increase business speed and agility, stop spending money running and maintaining data centers, and go global in minutes.

With Amazon Web Services (AWS) your organization can immediately provision the compute, storage, network, and database resources needed for any project. These resources launch and are ready for use by your project team within minutes. The environment can be reconfigured easily, updated quickly, scaled up or down automatically to meet usage patterns and optimize spending, or shut down temporarily or permanently. The billing for AWS services becomes an operational expense rather than a capital expense.

Cloud adoption requires that fundamental changes are discussed and considered across the entire organization, and that stakeholders across all organizational units—both outside and within IT—support these changes. The AWS Cloud Adoption Framework (AWS CAF) provides guidance that supports each unit in your organization so that each area understands how to update skills, adapt existing processes, and introduce new processes to take maximum advantage of the services provided by cloud computing. Thousands of organizations around the world have successfully migrated their businesses to the cloud, relying on the AWS CAF to guide their efforts. AWS and our partners provide tools and services that can help you every step of the way to ensure complete understanding and transition.

At the highest level, the AWS CAF organizes guidance into six focus areas. We describe these focus areas as Perspectives. Figure 1 shows the six Perspectives of the AWS CAF.



The AWS Cloud Adoption Framework (CAF)

Figure 1: The AWS Cloud Adoption Framework (CAF)

Each AWS CAF Perspective is made up of a set of CAF Capabilities, which is a composite of responsibilities typically owned or managed by one or more functionally related stakeholders. Each Capability describes “what” a stakeholder owns or manages in the cloud adoption journey. The Capabilities are a standard used within the CAF. Each Capability consists of a set of CAF Skills and Processes that provide structure to identify gaps in your existing skills and processes. For example, the People Perspective provides guidance for stakeholders who own or manage human resources (HR), staffing functions, and people management responsibilities. The guidance in this Perspective focuses on people development, training, and communications to assess how stakeholder-owned or -managed capabilities will transform with cloud adoption.

In general, the Business, People, and Governance Perspectives focus on business capabilities, and the Platform, Security, and Operations Perspectives focus on technical capabilities. A brief description of each AWS CAF Perspective is provided here, with more detailed descriptions later in this whitepaper.

  • Business Perspective – Common roles: Business Managers, Finance Managers, Budget Owners, and Strategy Stakeholders.

    Helps stakeholders understand how to update the staff skills and organizational processes they will need to optimize business value as they move their operations to the cloud.

  • People Perspective – Common roles: Human Resources, Staffing, and People Managers.

    Provides guidance for stakeholders responsible for people development, training, and communications. Helps stakeholders understand how to update the staff skills and organizational processes they will use to optimize and maintain their workforce, and ensure competencies are in place at the appropriate time.

  • Governance Perspective – Common roles: CIO, Program Managers, Project Managers, Enterprise Architects, Business Analysts, and Portfolio Managers.

    Provides guidance for stakeholders responsible for supporting business processes with technology. Helps stakeholders understand how to update the staff skills and organizational processes that are necessary to ensure business governance in the cloud, and manage and measure cloud investments to evaluate their business outcomes.

  • Platform Perspective – Common roles: CTO, IT Managers, and Solution Architects.

    Helps stakeholders understand how to update the staff skills and organizational processes that are necessary to deliver and optimize cloud solutions and services.

  • Security Perspective – Common roles: CISO, IT Security Managers, and IT Security Analysts.

    Helps stakeholders understand how to update the staff skills and organizational processes that are necessary to ensure that the architecture deployed in the cloud aligns to the organization’s security control requirements, resiliency, and compliance requirements.

  • Operations Perspective – Common roles: IT Operations Managers and IT Support Managers.

    Helps stakeholders understand how to update the staff skills and organizational processes that are necessary to ensure system health and reliability during the move of operations to the cloud and then to operate using agile, ongoing, cloud computing best practices.

By identifying the gaps in skills and processes between the current IT environment and the future cloud environment an organization can create an action plan designed to close these gaps. The AWS CAF Perspectives, Capabilities, Skills, and Processes are designed for organizations to use as they develop plans and work streams to move from their current IT environment to the AWS Cloud, or to deploy a new environment in the AWS Cloud. Stakeholders with organizational buy-in who apply the AWS CAF structure can create an actionable plan that helps the organization quickly and effectively achieve their desired cloud adoption.