Clearing the Fog Around Cloud Migration

Leendert van der Bijl, Principal, Deloitte Consulting
Leendert van der Bijl, Principal, Deloitte Consulting

Faced with competition for skilled talent from local corporate giants like Amazon, a public utility company suddenly saw a daunting challenge: 35% of its workforce was set to reach retirement age within 5 years.

You’ve heard this story before.

In an effort to measure up, the company sought to modernize. It needed to become a part of the digital environments that other organizations readily offered and today’s workforce had come to expect.

But how?

Understanding the Expectation First, the Issues Second

Although the path to the cloud is a journey and will take time for many to fully cycle, it is clear that companies should provide functionality and mobility for a workforce that just won’t wait.

HR executives should consider competing aggressively for the best through an engaging culture that values innovation. Millennials now make up more than half the workforce, and they have these high expectations for technology.

Those technologies will likely inevitably be introduced through the cloud. Cloud-based systems are designed from their core to quickly adapt and introduce innovations with multiple releases each year.

Businesses are now looking for options to balance their short term needs—ease of use and access to the latest—while making progress toward their longer term goals of agility and scalability.

Seeing the Challenge Ahead

What organization doesn’t have a large, complex web of systems and processes behind HR-related functions?

In many cases, they are somewhat newer processes built on top of older custom systems that still manage portions of their data. Some have even been re-implemented and adopted several times over.

The result: massive integration issues, slowing productivity, high costs of ownership, lagging technology, and stress on business performance.

Only cloud based computing is designed to keep pace with the new world of dynamic technology.

Tailoring a Path

There are multiple paths by which businesses today can move to the cloud. The following methods allow for a tailored cloud-based solution, accommodating the needs of an organization.

  • Big Bang: A high-risk comprehensive migration of all legacy functionality to a SaaS (Software as a Service)
  • Hybrid: This route can take on many variations as one or more HR/Payroll applications remain on premise, while others move to the cloud. User experience between modules can become a concern.
  • Phased: Incremental implementation, typically done by location, business unit, or module. Many companies start out as hybrid, then progress into phased implementation.
  • Side-by-side: Most commonly seen in merger and acquisition situations, where one company continues to use their on-premise solution, and the other migrates to the cloud.

And the most important thing to consider before embarking down one of these paths? Readiness.

Let’s gauge that next.

Considerations on Migration

Every business has their own set of technical requirements, combination of systems, customized workflows, and user demands that may alter the complexity, duration, and vendor of their cloud migration journey.

The “Key Considerations for Your Roadmap” graphic delineates three types of HR strategies broken down into overarching priorities: Talent, Speed, and HR Transformation.

Mobilize HR Now                                 

No two implementation plans will be identical. If your organization is not yet ready for an all-in pledge to the cloud, I invite you to learn more about the Deloitte AccessEdge™ SAP Human Capital Management solution. By enhancing on-premise SAP HCM processes, AccessEdge crafts a smooth HR experience. Become more intuitive, with functions that can blend with cloud-based HR applications. Engage your workforce from anywhere, on any device while maintaining consistent usability.

What about the company we first met in this piece? After a process of just fifteen months, they are seeing results in efficiency and accuracy that leaders expect will support the organization well into the future—the future being the cloud.

For a business to remain competitive, it is no longer a choice, but a matter of how and when an organization migrates to the cloud.