Top 5 Tips for Project Management in the Cloud

  1. Project management in the cloud

In the three years I’ve been at HOSTING, the Project Management Organization (PMO) has successfully completed more than 500 cloud projects. So when it comes to best practices for implementing cloud environments, let’s just say I’ve learned a few along the way.

The following are my top 5 tips for cloud project management:

1.You don’t have to be an engineer or solutions architect to run a cloud-based project.

That said, the more technical knowledge you have, the better. At the very least, it helps to know the differences between VMware, Azure and AWS and how your company or vendor deals with these differences. After all, as the unified cloud becomes more of a reality, knowledge of gaps and bridges will only enhance your project skills and contribution to the project.

2. Pay attention to storage.

Ten years ago, my only concern with storage was “Is it there?” My approach has changed with cloud solutions. Now I have to think through a number of questions. Do I have enough storage to add VMs? What is the estimated growth of the environment? What kind of performance should I expect? Is there an availability SLA? What protocols are used? Keep in mind that backups and upgrades affect storage also. These are common pain points for customers and questions that need to be addressed with every new project.

3. Agile, Waterfall, Prince2, etc. best practices and methodologies still apply to cloud projects.

We may be in a brave new world, but the old wisdom holds true – and can offer immeasurable value.

4. Projects move fast and Project Managers should be prepared to move quickly.

Time, as they say, is not on our side. Emphasis on preplanning and testing are a major component with cloud projects. Do yourself a favor and try to think through as many eventualities as possible before the project starts.

5. Include security and compliance in your project planning.

With the numerous recent website breaches and DDoS attacks, security is a top concern for just about everybody. So if your client has not talked about security or compliance, ask about it. Secure VPN logins, how to handle credentials, two-factor authentication – all play an important role in today’s cloud projects. Ignore them at your peril.

Want to learn more? Check out my podcast, Cloud Migration: Tales From the Trenches.

About the Author
Catherine Roy is currently Senior Manager of Hosting’s PMO (Project Management Organization).  She has over 15 years experience in IT Project Management that includes consulting on projects in technology, biotech, medical, energy, finance, academic, software, retail, real estate, government and marketing environments in both the US and Europe.


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