Public Sector organisations from Central Government to Local Councils are experiencing the need to embrace Digital Transformation. Integral to this, is the necessity to create a solid foundation on which services can be implemented, making the establishment of a Cloud platform, a fundamental part of any Digital Transformation activity.

To ensure Digital Transformation does not fall at the first hurdle, it is important to ensure the platform underpinning the transformation is secure, cost effective & can be easily maintained and managed. However, the platform itself is just the start of the journey. Organisations are then challenged to migrate legacy applications, learn new skills, manage a new environment and deal with change.

The “Azure in the Public Sector” event hosted by Sol-Tec in September, brought together a panel of Local Authorities and cloud experts to discuss the challenges that PubSec organisations often come up against when planning and executing their move to the cloud.

We heard from Tim Huggins, ICT Manager at Brentwood Borough Council who led this Local Authority to the Cloud. The Council is now reaping the benefits of its move to Microsoft Azure and the dramatic changes in ICT Service delivery the migration has enabled.

>>Download Brentwood Borough Council presentation

Paul Collins, CTO at Sol-Tec also presented. In his role he helps businesses understand how the use of cloud technology, in particular Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and adjacent technologies, can transform their business. With a raft of experience assisting PubSec organisations along their cloud journeys, he talked about what lessons he has learnt along the way.

>>Download Sol-Tec presentation

A great deal was covered in these presentations and the panel discussion that followed with the audience. We’ve outlined below some of the key takeaways borne out of our “Azure in the Public Sector” event:

  1. Engage a Cloud Partner
    To implement major change within an organisation requires talented, dedicated people. For small to medium-sized organisations, it is often difficult to justify the expense of employing specific expertise such as Cloud Architects directly. It is also true that your internal IT Team will only ever be required to carry our one cloud migration. Establishing a working relationship with a Cloud Partner, enables you to tap into expert knowledge in a time and cost-effective way.
  2. Communication is key
    Good communication is crucial and adopting an Agile approach to delivery of digital transformation puts an onus on good communication. There will be challenges along the way and you might not get everything right first time. But, building the right team around you and securing buy in from the top down, will help you overcome these hurdles.
  3. Focus on customer needs
    Technology should be used to improve the stakeholder experience rather than employing technology for technology’s sake.
  4. Think Big
    Cloud migration is the start of the journey. Once you are running services from Azure, you have a powerful platform to build upon and evolve services such as data analytics and disaster recovery.