Admiral Mark Heinrich, CloudAll too often, cloud computing projects are blocked by cumbersome corporate politics and apathetic supervisors. This block generally means ‘suspended,’ but in reality, it’s ‘suspended’ indefinitely, because by the time the finance, compliance, and legal departments have had a chance to review the project, it is stale and relegated to insignificance. After being tossed to the back burner, it falls off the ledge entirely to become an incomplete and forgotten about the project.

This is in spite of the hundreds of hours you, or someone, spent already initiating the project, getting it up and running, and starting (keyword: “starting”) to execute it. How do we sidestep inevitable and fatal departmental intervention to keep the cloud computing momentum going? How do we ensure our project is not stopped in its tracks by artificially complex policies?

Although there may not be any one all-inclusive answer, there are some approaches one can implement in order to give their project the best hope for success. First and foremost, cloud transformation is not simply an IT project. To treat it as such is to guarantee your well-intentioned company will get in the way. Rather, do the following:

Share your plans across all departments.

Include all departments in your cloud computing decision-making process. I’m talking about finance, legal, operations, compliance, research & development, sales…literally everyone. Sometimes, even if a department does not need to be involved, they will be inevitably become involved for either selfish reasons or maybe simple misunderstanding. Regardless, informing all departments covers your tracks and discourages potential roadblocks down the line.

Make a cloud business office.

Take some of the top-performing workers throughout IT and other parts of the company and then establish a sort of cloud business committee to be the reigning authority on all things cloud. This way, colleagues know where to turn when they have a question so unnecessary inquiries and time-eating misunderstandings are reduced considerably.

Stress the importance of moving everything to the cloud.

If the office does not understand, and especially if upper management does not understand, the significance of the cloud, you are in for a world of seemingly endless frustration. Although many in the C-suite and below understand the fundamental importance of the cloud (that it provides a strategic advantage and cuts costs), that does not mean they understand the extent to which it will help.

Educate them. Explain the metrics for success and failure and what that means for their everyday, and what that means for the company as a whole. Invest your time in them so they invest their time in the cloud. With everyone on the same team and moving forward, there is no reason some unfortunate company policy has to spring up and halt everything in its tracks.