From Aspiration to Action: Begin Implementing the Serverless Cloud

The Steps to a Serverless Action Plan

Ensuring the success of your move to serverless and cementing support for continued migration requires following a set of clear, concise, and customizable steps.

Step 1: Mobilize and prepare your team

Your team will be the ones executing on your serverless plan, so you need to make sure you have the right skills in the room (or on Zoom) to complete the project.

  • A legacy system SME
  • A legacy system architect
  • A business analyst who can track requirements, epics, stories, and timelines
  • An AWS architect or architects
  • AWS Lambda developers who can code in your organization’s language of choice (NodeJS, Java, Python, etc.)
  • Optionally, for new AWS environments: AWS admins who are familiar with Identity Access Management (IAM), account setup, and management on AWS

Step 2: Ensure your prerequisites are in order

Several things will need to be in place before your team begins to migrate the first serverless component.

Step 3: Characterize your interfaces

Our previous blog on this topic directed that a serverless move requires an inventory of the existing components in your environment. That list will now be used to help you identify a good candidate for serverless.

  • An internal process that only a few consumers are using
  • A non-mission-critical API that allows access to data
  • A greenfield interface or process that can be developed from scratch on AWS
  • An initial entry point — like an API — that can help extend the life or the capabilities of an existing system. For instance, the entry point might help with throttling requests, security, or act as a centralized access point for the back end

Step 4: Deconstruct and engineer

Once the team is in place, the systems are set up, and the initial candidate is chosen, it’s time to deconstruct the monolithic application by moving the first piece.

  • Layout all of the requirements; this is especially important if you’ll be creating new functionality
  • Design the process and interaction with the legacy system
  • Create the architectural diagrams for the system interactions with AWS and the legacy system, as well as within the serverless cloud itself
  • Create epics and stories if using an Agile methodology — Big Compass’s preferred tool for this is Jira
  • Align the developers to the Jira stories
  • Develop to the use cases defined
  • Test with the legacy system SME and AWS architects to ensure end-to-end feasibility, including regression testing against the old system’s functionality
  • Deploy to AWS
  • Migrate the service’s consumers, if necessary, such as API consumers
  • Measure new metrics in AWS
  • Create consumable dashboards, such as CloudWatch Dashboards

Conclusion

The actions outlined in this post are the first steps to take in your move to the serverless cloud, along with the planning in our previous post. Once you have made the initial leap, each additional piece you move should adhere to the same process. That’s the natural beauty of this methodology and why Big Compass uses it with our clients over and over again — it’s repeatable for each component of your system and lowers the barrier to entry for serverless cloud adoption.

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Aaron Lieberman

Aaron Lieberman

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Aaron’s passion for technology drives him to find innovative ways to help advance organizations through technology.