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Is your cloud system a mess? Our self-assessment tool will tell you

David Taber | Feb. 21, 2013
Your cloud-based system may have been in use for seven years or more. It probably needs a tune-up. Let's see what kind of shape it's in and what you need to do to make it run like new.

Stewardship and Governance

Give yourself 1 point for each "unit" that's implied in the question.

  • How many people have cloud administration privileges?
  • How many system administrators have not taken formal admin training or certification?
  • Divide the total number of reports, views and dashboards by 100.
  • Divide the total number of users by 100.
  • Divide the total number of tables and directories by 100.
  • How many of your stores exceed the allowed capacity or quota?
  • How many system objects or directory trees have no descriptive documentation about them?

Cloud System Integration

Again, give yourself 1 point for each "unit" that's implied in the question.

  • How many third-party products and services are integrated with your cloud solution?
  • How many third-party products and services are open source or unsupported by a vendor?
  • How many third-party products haven't been updated in more than 18 months?
  • How many of these integrated systems share a user license in the cloud with a user or other integrated system?
  • How many of the systems' formulas or workflows do processing that spans system boundaries-for example, scoring that's done partially in one cloud and partially in another?
  • How many external systems are not fully internationalized for character set, currency and sorting?
  • How many "integrations" are done by re-keying data or export/import cycling CSV or XLS files?
  • How many unplanned outages or lost transactions did your cloud integrations experience in the last 12 months?

Proper Automation

Finally, give yourself 1 point for each "unit" that's implied in the question.

  • How many months has it been since you ran all the internal test cases for your code?
  • What percentage of your code is not covered by a test method?
  • How many of your systems' custom-coded methods no longer execute or have no relevant function?
  • How many of your systems' custom-coded methods are longer than 100 lines of code?
  • How many of you systems' methods or workflows can cause an orphan record or file?
  • How many buttons on forms let the user fill out the form the wrong way or execute the business process without proper enforcement?
  • How many rule-driven parts of the system produce incorrect results such as flakey routing, escalation or alerts?

Now, Give Your Cloud System a Tune-Up

Total the scores from each of these sections. If the overall total is less than 100, breathe a sigh of relief. If your score is above 1,000, panic now. If your score is in between, focus attention on the groups that have the highest point value.

You'll notice that these questions tend to drive the scores higher for systems that have been in production for longer periods. That's because cloud systems, like gardens, require constant tending. The longer they've been in place, the more ways they can be overgrown and weed-infested.

David Taber is the author of the new Prentice Hall book, " Secrets of Success" and is the CEO of SalesLogistix, a certified consultancy focused on business process improvement through use of CRM systems. SalesLogistix clients are in North America, Europe, Israel and India. Taber has more than 25 years of experience in high tech, including 10 years at the VP level or above.


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