Migrating to the cloud is changing business

Laurel: Well, let’s get started. So how did BP’s move to the cloud go? From your perspective, what are the biggest benefits and challenges of cloud transformation?

Keisha: Yes, from my perspective, our journey was exciting, complex and a learning journey all the way. And it’s been a long time. It’s been quite a long time. Our journey started in 2013 and we experimented with cloud computing for email services and HR learning management systems. And then we look back to 2016: about 2% of our BP applications were in the cloud. As a company, we conducted proof of concepts and determined what the best approach was and how we could implement this at scale. In 2017, we adopted a cloud-first approach, meaning that everything that represented new hardware and all new system builds should be done in the cloud and no longer needed to be added to our then eight mega data centers and over 107 different ones Data centers in our regions around the world.

We had decided that we would not add anything else unless it involved the cloud. Or if it had to be on site, it could only happen in exceptional cases. That motivated us to keep going and take everyone along on the journey. But again, it’s just about selling our entire business and everyone else into the business or into the cloud and cloud concepts and all of those things, given that there were a lot of unknowns at the time, so just with different vendors to work together and try to find people who are as knowledgeable as possible. So again, this all just added to the complexity. By the end of 2022, we were pretty well underway and had some or a large portion of our state done, over 90% of our state to be exact, we migrated to our cloud environments, which enabled our faster product – and service introduction and the change of BP’s digital operating model, which we have now converted to a product-led organization.

In my opinion, one of the biggest benefits of our cloud migrations was that they helped us optimize BP’s technology stack. Of course, it has increased our operational resilience. It introduced new network and data architectures, accelerated the adoption of our technology, helped modernize our state and keep it increasingly green, and also helped reduce our carbon emissions2 Emissions from our data centers. However, despite the size of our landscape, migrating to the cloud to the extent that we had to was again, as I said, challenging, complex and extensive as we had an extensive legacy IT estate. And as I said, just hosted in the eight major mega data centers in the US and Europe, and then also in the countless data centers that we have in our regions. So I can’t stress enough the challenge was there, but the rewards were great.

Laurel: So this is a great look at the past and the journey that BP has taken. So what are some of the key cloud trends you’re watching today?

Keisha: Some of the key trends we are seeing today from a platform perspective include more companies consolidating their business applications onto cloud-based platforms, becoming more cloud-native, and having robust data and analytics platforms that enable both real-time and on-demand -Access important business information. Again, as I said, we have moved to a product-oriented organization and so we see that there are of course several companies that are doing the same thing. Digital teams align with product-focused operating models to ensure customer focus and focus. And then just put that in the foreground. And then product development and enabling business and business-focused prioritization and product delivery, which in turn helps us better align with our business strategy. And considering where we’re going with the transition to an integrated energy company and our transition with re:Invent, that’s been huge for us.

There are a lot of markets that we’re entering, a lot of things that we’re doing, and we need to go into the business to be dynamic and able to change and move and be able to come up with solutions to enable faster market introduction. From this point of view, it was great for us to work on a cloud platform and have all the technology at our disposal to do this quickly and in line with our business. And I see a lot more companies that just want to share experiences and knowledge because they’re trying to do the same thing. Also, just the cloud native part of it and cloud native enterprise is an organization that has aligned business and technology teams to help, again, modernize operations, but we need to build more cloud native capabilities so that the Things are more plug-and-play than the huge expansions.

And on the other hand, there’s a lot of upgrading and all the things that come with not building and being at the forefront or being cloud native with more. This is also part of our reinvention journey and also enables climate protection measures. We’re seeing a lot of people moving towards doing the things that are in line with the Paris Agreement, as well as all the things we’re doing as part of re:Invent. So the decarbonization of digital assets directly impacts about 2% of global energy consumption. That’s why it helps. Every little bit helps. So these are the things we see. And of course we’re also moving in this area to help us get to net zero. It’s also simply about creating a more connected world. 2023, this year and beyond, promises opportunities for large-scale industrial 5G, broadband-based IoT deployments, and catapult connections for remote regions.