In our last blog, we examined the 3 major responsibilities Cloud Centers of Excellence (CCoEs) fulfill. But how do these top-line principles translate to best practices that place the cloud at the heart of enterprise functions?

The key is to make CCoE services convenient and efficient. Beyond checklists and contingencies, instill an operational culture that entrenches cloud integration within the entire enterprise.

Fully leveraging cloud and CCoE capabilities involves a shift in organizational thinking. And unless that shift is easy to execute, every attempt to implement change will be met with efficiency-sapping resistance and delays.


Treat cloud like your product, and users like customers

CCoEs are best employed to enable existing business functions. They are not equipped for command-and-control roles. Positioning CCoE services as a solution for stakeholders and their routine issues enhances performance without disrupting regular processes.

Fostering trust with executives, application team leaders, and users is critical to building an effective CCoE that can coordinate functions and improve existing capabilities without provoking internal conflict, delays, or damage to cohesion.


Build a cross-organizational cloud culture

CCoE teams should include leaders and experts from every business function to ensure efforts are cohesive and prevent silos. But a top-heavy approach will only go so far.

Effective CCoEs integrate with every business unit, team, and workflow. And all stakeholders, not just function leaders, should have equal access to the CCoE’s knowledge base, advisory, and resources.

Building in cross-organizational communications channels and protocols creates an open culture of communication with the CCoE team that permeates from departmental head to individual user, accelerating the provision of assistance.

Open communications also enhance internal speed to market. The CCoE becomes a front-of-mind advisor for initiatives driven by specific units, enhancing its ability to coordinate and lead.


Accelerate functions and processes with contingency frameworks

When it comes to consistency and efficiency, forewarned is forearmed. Standardized, reliable, and reusable frameworks detailing contingency action for every function and situation save time, energy, and accelerate processes.

Protocols and asset templates, such as the below, introduce reliability and uniformity across a range of process areas and technical competencies:

Cloud architecture and design planning

Project and cost management functions

Data governance and regulation policies

Security frameworks and contingencies

Cloud bill and subscription management

Business and product owner engagement

Design frameworks for reliability and consistency, with sufficient flexibility for experimentation and optimization to match evolving business needs.


Staff for technical competencies from the start

CCoEs operate at full tilt from the outset. Extensive responsibilities leave little room to refit team composition mid-flight. Consequently, every part of the team must be in place from the start to minimize disruptions and maximize speed to market.

Although specific positions will differ from enterprise to enterprise, 5 key competencies should be present in every CCoE team:

Internal leaders representing the needs and capabilities of business units, departments, and teams

Senior executives to provide operational knowledge of processes, procedures, workflows, and to lend credibility and authority

Infrastructure experts who will determine the best cloud model, how to select and run apps, and store data efficiently

Application developers and owners to guide solutions design, development, and deployment

Cybersecurity experts to evaluate threats and formulate integration with the broader security architecture


Plan for the long haul, and refine as you go

There’s no telling how long the journey to cloud maturity will take. Evolving business and tech landscapes, strategic aims, and operational realities can prolong processes, extend objectives, inflict costs, and cause delays.

A comprehensive application migration strategy helps anticipate and mitigate negative impacts. CCoE teams should also watch for long-term opportunities to expedite cloud integration, prepare contingencies, and enhance processes. Common areas to monitor include:

Business Continuity Planning (BCP) and Disaster Recovery (DR) contingencies at every stage of migration and integration

Incorporating SaaS, PaaS, and vendor solutions ahead of time to meet projected needs beyond IaaS infrastructure

Optimizing migration templates and other assets to reflect evolving best practices

No matter how well-prepared, CCoE teams must remain agile and vigilant. Changing conditions will make adjustments to roles, skills, and scope of work inevitable.

It’s easy to resort to generalities when talking about CCoE best practices. No business function or broader enterprise operates or migrates the same way. But the benefits of building a CCoE outweigh any downsides. Implementation of a cohesive cloud development plan enables organizational effectiveness and efficiency that goes well beyond the cloud – and it’s never too early to start planning.

This blog concludes our 4-part series on cloud cost optimization. Click on the links to read Part 1 on cloud-friendly application development, Part 2 on prioritizing apps for cloud migration, and Part 3 on the top-line responsibilities of successful CCoEs.

Ensure you’re building a culture of cloud enablement and optimize your CCoE’s performance. Talk with a Wavestone cloud expert.



Our team is a blend of high-quality talent from all levels who can tackle your most complex issues with a fresh approach. With a globally connected network of 4,000 employees, Wavestone is designed to help you get results. All our consultants thrive on complex challenges, enjoy blazing new trails, and are committed to your organization’s success.

Laying the Foundations: The 4 Core Competencies of Effective Cloud Solutions Security

Sep 21, 2023

Implementing effective cloud solutions security is complex. Solution security architectures must be initially done with minimal mandated standards, then built progressively, with additional layers of security built on foundational capabilities. In this first of a 3-part series on safeguarding cloud solutions, we examine the 4 foundational capabilities of effective solutions security and best practices to implement them.

Wavestone Named to Forbes World’s Best Management Consulting Firms 2023 List

Sep 19, 2023

Forbes has once again recognized Wavestone in its annual “World’s Best Management Consulting Firms 2023” list. Read our blog for more information about the ranking and Wavestone’s award-winning business and technology consulting services.

Have a Question? Just Ask

Whether you're looking for practical advice or just plain curious, our experienced principals are here to help. Check back weekly as we publish the most interesting questions and answers right here.

Ask Wavestone