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Cloud Audit and Compliance: Implementing a Change Management Process with your Cloud Environment

The lockdown forced various industries to adapt to WFH policies, while also meeting a massive surge in demand. To accomplish both objectives at the same time, many had to make a lot of changes to their infrastructure.

While quick changes allowed these industries to adapt, it also opened up their infrastructure to a host of problems that will compromise performance and security, unless addressed immediately. What are these issues? Is there a solution? We address the challenges many industries face in a post-COVID-19 world and what can be done about it.

The lockdown, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, placed significant pressure on companies. Besides the surge in demand, the lockdown and the shift to work from home (WFH) forced them to adjust and re-purpose their infrastructure.

The pressure to expand their capacity to meet the surge in demand, as well as adjusting their infrastructure, placed enormous pressure on many companies to alter their systems and do so in a short amount of time.

Now, as we prepare to deal with a post-lockdown world, many companies find themselves dealing with a new set of problems. The first is dealing with the fallout from making so many changes to their systems, in such a short time span, which has led to all sorts of performance and compliance problems.

Furthermore, many companies now face an uncertain time – mainly, what is the best way to handle a post-lockdown world? Do they stick with the WFH model that they had to adapt so quickly? Or do they adopt a new hybrid working model?

The need to tackle several problems highlights the importance of cloud audit solutions with change management.

Challenges in a Post COVID-19 world

While many companies have adapted relatively well, they had to deal with issues in different areas, like compliance and visibility. Problems in these areas have spilt over to compromise on the customer experience for many of them. For example, reviewing the call centers of many companies, you will hear about lower call quality and difficulty in gaining access to customer agents. For those companies, this translates into a lower first call response rate (FCR) and an increase in average call times, and more importantly a decrease in customer satisfaction.

Compliance is a particularly concerning issue for many companies. Failure to abide by PCI DSS, GDPR, HIPPA, ECPA, PIPEDA and EFTA regulations can lead to fines and penalties, not to mention, loss of consumer confidence.

These problems arise because changes were made without the means to track them. When that happens, it becomes difficult to ascertain whether these companies are complying with regulations. The lack of change management also escalates the problem because if a change is made, it becomes difficult to ascertain what the cause was and how to undo it.

The absence of a change management process makes a cloud audit much harder to execute because with most cloud systems, there is no record of alterations made to the system.

While there are many issues that cause compliance problems the lack of a change management process, makes it difficult to resolve these changes quickly.

Change Management Process – Why is it so important?

Maintaining that change management process provides the ability for companies to keep a record and track any changes made to their cloud infrastructure. It’s a valuable asset to have because configuration information is incredibly complex. If there is a problem, engineers often have to dive into their systems blindly to resolve the problem, resulting in lengthy downtimes and higher cost.

When considering the current situation, resorting to manual methods to resolve an issue becomes impractical. Furthermore, when there is no record of a change, it implies that there is little visibility into who is making the changes, which is a problem when you consider that the vast majority of a company’s workforce works remotely.

Maintaining a change log can resolve many of these problems. A change log allows engineers to monitor changes and regulate access to their infrastructure. With this oversight, engineers know who is making changes to the system and the type of changes made. With this knowledge, they can pro-actively monitor changes to the system and in the event of a problem, engineers have a documented course of action to start troubleshooting.

A change log makes a cloud audit more efficient and accurate because engineers have access to a repository of information. Less time spent on a cloud audit means reducing system downtimes. 

Furthermore, with a change log, it becomes much easier to ensure compliance because there is a record of all changes made to the system.

However, the biggest benefit of maintaining a change log is the ability to rollback changes. With this option, engineers can simply undo the changes at any time. This is helpful because if a recent change causes a huge problem, engineers can simply rollback to a prior state and undo the problem.

How to maintain a record of changes? 

Maintaining a change log is crucial for cloud auditing and compliance. A log of changes can make the auditing process much easier for engineers, making it easier to resolve issues. When this happens, quality improves, due to shorter troubleshooting times and better employee and customer experience. It also ensures compliance with regulation due to better visibility and transparency in the system.

However, what is the best way to maintain a change log? Implementing or amending your change management process with a cloud solution.

Need help establishing a change management process? Need help implementing a process with your cloud system? Contact us and we can help you effectively implement your process.

About Advanced Cloud Solutions

Advanced Cloud Solutions is a global Salesforce, Microsoft 365, and IT Services firm driven by maximizing our clients productivity and ROI.

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