Third in a series of three articles on SME cloud migration.
In the first two articles of our cloud migration series, we focused on why cloud migration presents a lifeline for SMEs and how to get started with the journey. Our last edition highlights the considerations for maintaining momentum once your cloud journey has taken off.
To secure the benefits you seek to gain from moving to the cloud, your cloud strategy should factor in an adjustment period, following the success of the technical migration stage. This transition period aims to maintain the momentum gained during the cloud journey and ensures that your business secures the benefits cloud has to offer. One of the primary foundations for this momentum is formed through your organisation’s cybercapacity, which is reinforced through a privacy-first culture.
Strengthening Your Team in Cyberspace
For many SMEs, a limited cybercapacity is one of the underlying obstacles in the way of maximising the benefits of the cloud, and cyberspace at large. The cybercapacity concept can be viewed as an umbrella covering all the components you need to safeguard your business in cyberspace, spanning issues involved in cybersecurity and privacy.
Chief Information Security Officers, or CISOs, have often disclosed to me that many team members are even unaware if the software they use is hosted in the cloud or on premise. This is directly connected to our advice in the previous article - to identify a potential skills and knowledge gap and develop an employee training plan to address it during your cloud journey process. Follow up on the training and monitor your team’s progress for a defined period of time after the technical migration has been completed.
What should your team’s cybercapacity training entail? We suggest going back to the basics and embedding this into the wider context of your cloud strategy. For example, map out the “before and after'' changes that cloud migration will bring for you and your team. Shine a light on the implications for their daily tasks. Which safeguarding behaviours should your team keep in mind and why?
The development of your organisation’s cybercapacity entails a change in mindset on cybersecurity and on privacy, which requires a better understanding of the topic at hand. For actionable advice on first steps, check out our article on building digital trust, which dives deeper into the topic of cybercapacity building.
Migrating to the cloud requires that organisations build capabilities to mitigate cyberrisk caused by human behaviour, as well as reducing opportunities for cybercriminals to exploit human weaknesses. Behaviour change and an effective workplace culture is an iterative process. Revisiting the basics of your cybercapacity on a regular basis is one of the most valuable long-term investments you can make to strengthen the future of your business. Raised awareness of our behaviours as well as developing our own cybersecurity and privacy should be an integral element of the workplace culture.
Transforming into a Cybercapable Organisation
Transformation of the workplace culture is vital for a successful journey to the cloud. As we established when looking at the human factor of cloud migration, it all starts with change enablement and empowering your networked team employees to adopt new ways of working.
One of the ways of approaching this cultural change is by seeking to establish a privacy-first culture. This entails a reciprocal process among leaders and teams and considers how the technical and human capabilities related to identity come through in digital collaboration. Your cloud migration presents an opportunity to better conceptualise your team’s digital interactions, the process of which goes a long way in securing the benefits available in the cloud.
If you’re interested to find out more about the essence of building a privacy-first culture, check out another one of our articles, where we take a further look into what the process entails.
Culture is not automatically built - it is enacted through people’s identity. This is specifically so, when it comes to remote teams, which many organisations have become during the COVID-19 crisis. So what can leaders do to create and sustain a privacy-first culture from afar? It starts with digital trust. It takes an intentional and continuous effort to role-model and foster cybersavvy behaviours to build and maintain digital trust among the team and with clients.
When your organisation is successful in empowering change in culture, you’ll be able to enjoy the many benefits of cloud migration while minimising – if not fully eliminating – its dark side and thereby maximising the bright side. A successful journey to the cloud, can be recognised when all the technical pieces start to fall into place within the context of a wider culture shift.
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Digital transformation strategist | Privacy advisor | Cyber anthropologist | Author