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Banner: Product thinking in the new era of cloud

Product thinking in the new era of cloud

Podcast host Kimberly Boyd | Podcast guest Max Griffiths
October 27, 2021 | 41 min 27 sec

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Brief summary

Cloud infrastructure has been universally praised for its simplicity, an intuitive, scalable, and cost-effective alternative that promised to transform how we approach IT infrastructure. But as offerings from the major public cloud providers have become more sophisticated, cloud is becoming increasingly complex. Listen to this episode with Max Griffiths, Principal Infrastructure Consultant, to learn more about productizing this part of the business, preparing teams for the skills shift to this new paradigm, ensuring cost savings and enabling the business with product thinking.

Episode highlights:


  • Always tie back to the business strategy or what you’re trying to do as a holistic organization. Set markers to optimize when you’re in the middle of the journey and have a plan, but avoid being too rigid or getting lost on the journey. Have key indicators of the benefits you're hoping to get to measure success along the way.

  • Software engineering within an infrastructure context. The infrastructure world is moving, everything in the cloud is software-defined. Understand what the application teams are doing and then supply enough infrastructure to make the application work, but make it evolutionary as possible and make decisions on the architecture that is driven by the business.

  • Creating self-service infrastructure. To create this self-service aspect, the developer team should be able to get what they need without depending on too many teams; it needs to tie into that application-driven infrastructure.   

  • There's lots of shiny objects on the cloud journey that can distract attention. There's over 2 million products offered right now from vendors who are building more specific capabilities to help their customers. It brings about different challenges, complexities and it creates a harder space to remain disciplined.

  • Product thinking on the team. Factor your application around the business capabilities that make sense to customers. It creates a clear understanding of where the value is being connected. Think about your developers and other teams within the company as internal customers. Have someone on the team who has the business acumen and understands broadly what the organization that you're working in is doing, be able to work with the platform engineering team so they can help make sure that those two things are always tied together.

  • Future-proofing cloud strategies. Focus on how to financially model the benefits of building internal platform services. Try to package up your platform products in a way that can be monetized, whether it's real money or whether it's just estimated costs in terms of the balance sheet, really weigh up these expenditures and business value that they're providing.


Learn more about this topic Infrastructure as Product here.


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