SC:Foundation

How we helped Homes England build their base platform for cloud.

Shaping Cloud’s Azure Foundation Programme takes the customer through the fundamentals of Microsoft Azure, facilitating their initial investigation into how the platform could meet their organisation’s needs.

By analysing other organisations’ uses of Azure and reviewing comparisons of a current on-premise solution Vs Azure, the Foundation programme allows a customer’s team to make an informed choice on whether Azure is suitable for them.

In many cases, customers are unsure of their objectives and daunted by a significant change. Shaping Cloud, a Microsoft Gold Partner, is there to point them in the right direction, provide guidance, and demonstrate Azure’s capabilities.

The Shaping Cloud team understands that no customer is the same so every Azure Foundation is tailored to the individual customer’s needs.

Azure Foundations courses are delivered as a three-day, interactive workshop with the customer’s technical team. Prior to onsite engagement, the customer shares its aims, objectives and concerns with the Shaping Cloud team and agrees on the key areas to be covered across the 3-day course. Some popular topics that are covered include back up, Azure site recovery and load balanced web applications.

The Shaping Cloud team spends the first two days covering everything the customer has asked for in its priorities brief. On the last day, the Shaping Cloud experts share their observations and advice on areas that the client may not yet have identified as important.

The Foundations workshop is a very hands-on experience with the customer’s technical team doing all of the button-clicking and typing as the Shaping Cloud experts guide them through every step.

At the end of the Azure Foundation, clients leave with a base Azure set up which includes networking, a VPN, some servers, and possibly DMZ. Customers also receive a diagrammatic output of the solution built during the Azure Foundation course for their reference.

An important part of the Azure Foundation is the focus on governance of Azure. The Shaping Cloud team teaches the customer the best governance controls and security measures to put in place.

I approached Shaping Cloud on recommendation to help me build Azure capability within my small team, the result being a fully configured Azure datacentre connected to our network which enabled my team to successfully pilot an application migration. I was really impressed with how Shaping Cloud handled the engagement from start to finish, including the valuable short on-site workshop session to walk the team through building and configuring Azure, which provided the added bonus of providing hands on training which was essential for us to be able to progress and support the service.