The Animal and Plant Health Agency
APHA had procurement hurdles which prevented them from using cloud resources efficiently.
The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is one of the 15 specialised agencies of the United Nations (UN). WIPO was created in 1967 and is the global forum for intellectual property services, policy information and cooperation.
WIPO currently has 192 member states, administers 26 international treaties, and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
Cutter and Strategic Blue had the expertise and in-depth knowledge of the cloud market to help WIPO to fast-track the capability to start using cloud services effectively.
Before 2018, WIPO had a policy that restricted use of cloud services. In 2017, the policy was changed and WIPO started a process to establish contracts with cloud service providers. The contracting process needed to follow strict guidelines, similar to the procurement regulations that many public sector organisations are required to follow. This made it difficult to select vendors from a diverse and heterogeneous market place.
WIPO engaged Cutter Consortium, one of Strategic Blue’s partners, for help in understanding the pros and cons of moving workloads to the cloud. A risk analysis and market landscape survey was delivered, which helped WIPO senior management support the change of policy to adopt cloud services and to start the procurement process.
The work performed at WIPO by Cutter Consortium and Strategic Blue led to a highly successful shift in IT policy, from an initial ‘no cloud’ to a ‘cloud first’ policy.
As part of the Cutter Consortium’s long-standing experience working with UN organisations, it identified a need at WIPO for optimal cloud procurement. Cutter brought in the Strategic Blue team as cloud finance experts to support its client. Strategic Blue went to Geneva to interview IT stakeholders from WIPO and present findings and recommendations on cloud adoption to the senior management of WIPO. As WIPO was just at the beginning of its cloud journey, Strategic Blue’s recommendations were to overcome some previous hurdles and to tailor the procurement process (drafting of the RFP and evaluation criteria) to take account of the specificities of cloud procurement. The key recommendations were that WIPO run a series of activities to start the public cloud adoption at WIPO. These ranged from procurement to enabling sandbox cloud environments aimed at validated learning. Another recommendation was to take an iterative and minimum viable product (MVP) approach to cloud adoption. This approach results in simple, short projects, where an initial landing zone and security controls are created, and then cloud-friendly applications are migrated and knowledge and skills are developed. A key recommendation was to establish a Cloud Centre of Excellence, featuring a cross-functional team that begins work on a project, and develops into an organisational unit. Such a Centre is essential in enabling cloud consumption within proper guard rails, creating cloud patterns to help the rest of the organisation leverage the benefits of cloud safely. The Centre forms the hub of cloud learning and support. Strategic Blue with Cutter, delivered further workshops highlighting how these recommendations can turn into actions, building both cloud strategy and best practices for WIPO.
WIPO then engaged Cutter and Strategic Blue to assist with the procurement process. Strategic Blue designed an RFP and evaluation criteria which enabled objective comparison of services and prices across a diverse range of bidders. The RFP also needed to take into account certain specificities of WIPO related to its status as an international organisation. This process resulted in the successful completion of the tendering process and the establishment of contracts that met the needs and regulatory requirements of WIPO.