“It works.” That’s a term used to go right along with “success,” but these days it means that you’ve gotten an instance of a cloud solution up and running. But it’s typically falling short in some way that those that use the term “it works” don’t yet understand.

Why? If you have an IT problem to solve using cloud computing technology, there are about 5! (five factorial) solutions, and they all “work.” However, only one solution pattern and corresponding technology solution are the most optimal.

So, you can have something working, but it’s costing you $1 million a month in lost efficiency. Yet those who crafted the solution are marveling at the fact that it’s functioning—and are typically unaware of the lost value that they created. Nobody bothers to figure it out, so they move forward with a suboptimal solution, money is lost, and the business is worse off.

Of course, there are no common solution and technology patterns. You get “it depends” answer from the better cloud architects because, well, it depends.  It depends on your exiting state of IT, application portfolio, security, governance, ops, data structures and database, and all the work that led to your decision to move aspects of your IT to the cloud.

The need to move from your “as is” state puts limitations on what you can leverage around cloud computing—or any technology, for that matter. However, enterprises tend to chase the hype and end up with something that is just “working”—but not optimized for their specific needs. And they’re paying more than they need to as a result.

To resolve this issue, you need more education. There are very few people who can identify suboptimal cloud solutions and thus prevent their deployment. Perhaps you can be such a person in your organization.