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Product Abstract

Utility Cloud Integration Guidebook: A Guide for Enterprise Architects

Product ID:3002005727
Date Published:28-Dec-2015
Sector Name:Power Delivery & Utilization - Distribution & Utilization
Document Type:Technical Results
Price:No Charge

This Product is publicly available

View Executive Summary      2.17 MB - Adobe PDF (.pdf)


Utilities have been slow to adopt cloud-based technologies, whether they be public, private, or hybrid. Some of the challenges have been a reluctance to trust the technology or to deploy mission-critical applications on uncertain platforms. Other reasons to delay deployment are financial. As cloud technologies continue to mature, they have become an important consideration in the overall architecture of utilities. The fact is that these technological solutions have matured to the point at which they warrant new attention. The challenge then becomes to make sure that utility decision-makers are armed with a basic understanding of cloud technology and how it impacts architecture decisions, along with an understanding of how to best manage the financial aspects of migrating to or investing in cloud-based solutions. Additionally, as with any fundamental change in architecture, the appropriate governance and change-management challenges need to be addressed. There are many available resources that address cloud topics, but there are few (if any) that address cloud technology in a utility-based context which reflects an understanding of utilities’ specific constraints and typical operating environments.

The maturity of the utility industry’s involvement in cloud-based applications runs the gamut—from adopting wholesale migrations to the cloud to just getting started. Therefore, this is an opportune time to craft a document that captures the experiences of the leading utilities and the best practices discussed in the literature and combine this information into a holistic guidebook. This guidebook will walk the reader through the basics of cloud technology, providing valuable information on how to make sound assessments of cloud platforms and how to address change-management and financial issues.


  • Create a guidebook that can be used by utilities to inform the technical, architectural, financial, governance, and change-management issues related to moving to cloud-based technologies.
  • Inform the reader about the relevant risks associated with using cloud-based resources: technical, business-oriented, and information-related.

This guidebook leverages both resources available in the literature and (where appropriate) guidance from the government. It also captures the experiences of leading practitioners who have first-hand experience with implementing cloud solutions in a utility environment.

This research synthesized numerous sources of information pertaining to cloud-based computing solutions into a singular resource that provides guidance on all of the factors that should be considered when evaluating a utility’s application portfolio. This guidebook does not tell each utility practitioner what their decisions should be; rather, it creates a comprehensive framework to provide assistance when evaluating solutions.

Applications, Value, and Use
The intended audience for this guidebook includes Chief Information Officers (CIOs), senior managers, and enterprise and solution architects. This guidebook can be used as a starting point in understanding the basics of cloud-based solutions. It can help in assessing the application portfolio at a utility for its suitability of migration to the cloud and provide valuable understanding of the impacts and risks from technical, financial, and change-management viewpoints.


2015 Program 161   Information and Communication Technology
  • Systems Integration
  • Enterprise architecture
  • Cloud architecture
  • Application portfolio assessment
  • Solution architecture

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