SpaceLab4 successful project, thanks to Cloud

Published on Friday 14 June 2013 by in Blog with no comments

SpaceLab4 black

10 Cloud experts were invited to experience the new cloud simulation SpaceLab4. The objective was to explore the value of the simulation for the customer and training partners. How can this simulation help create understanding and improve cloud service management?

Short scenario

SpaceLab 4 is circling the earth with a team of experts conducting experiments in space to address the world’s hunger problem as well as environmental concerns. The program is in jeopardy, however, because Congress is about to cut off funding and must be assured and persuaded that the program is viable and can produce a return on its sizeable investment. It is up to those on the ground and those in space to communicate through the development of a Cloud based information system, to share data, pictures, sights, and sounds that will persuade Congress to continue funding the program.

The team starts with a standard infrastructure managed bij a team of specialits and supported by a team of support engineers. No cloud solutions have been implemented but plans are being made.

First Round experience
  • specialists were all very busy solving issues
  • everybody focused on technology and little dialog with the business
  • cloud supplier tries to ‘sell’ cloud solutions, but fails due to ‘busy’ IT team
  • not enough information to make decisions about costs, value of cloud
  • who is responsible for cloud within the company?
  • ad hoc dynamics, no planning for the future
  • no clear picture of where are we going to


This scene shows the specialists during a meeting to decide if they are going to implement a new service. They are examining the current infrastructure containing many components, unclear relationships and a lot of ‘owners’ defending their domains.

By the way, because of this meeting both the crew in SpaceLab4 and the rocket astronauts were totally forgotten. This resulted in the loss of a lot of ‘Customers Satisfaction Points’.

Second round experience

In the second round the team improved their processes and the roles and responsibilities. A new role was introduced ‘The Project Manager Cloud’. In the first few periods of this second round the team started with the implementation of cloud solutions.

Outcomes of this round 2:

  • We wasted a lot of money, we installed new ‘old’ technology, and after a few periods the cloud took over this functionality. Lack of communication and poor decision making
  • We had difficulties to decide who was responsible to solve issues. We or the cloud vendor. This was not clear and the Support team was not sure and not informed.
  • The cloud vendor just sold solutions but we were not able to decide which one solved our problems.
  • We improved our support process.


Compare this picture with the first one. Do you see the difference?

This is the same meeting as in the first round, exploring the impact of a Business Demand but now having a transparant infrastructure based on cloud solutions.

Fast decision making, clear impact assessment and effective solutions.

The 3rd round went very well

The cloud implementation was finished. Roles and responsibilities were well designed and assigned. Also the new Business Demands were implemented fast and without risk. Even the Business coming with their 100 tablets to be installed for their sales force were surprised that it only took a few periods to be implemented.

The crew and the astronauts were very satisfied.

Outcome of this session, what the experts say…
  1. This simulation demonstrates how easy it is to forget the role of the IT Support team when we move to cloud.
  2. It shows the issues when having data on different locations and the laws around this
  3. It shows how it changes the way IT works together with the business
  4. It shows how well designed cloud solutions can increase flexibility and the speed of implementing new services
  5. It demonstrates clearly how to adjust the current ITSM processes towards cloud, cloud vendors
  6. It was also clear to see that our team requires new canadian pharmacy competences to manage these types of cloud environments

It was clear that the simulation helped create a dialogue and raise the key issues surrounding cloud services and cloud service management. The exercise highlighted common fail factors and succes factors. It was seen as a very useful instrument to support any Cloud project.

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