Surf’s up! The next wave of cloud migration is about to hit

Founded nearly a century ago, defense contractor Raytheon Co. wrestles with the same kind of legacy infrastructure burden as any longstanding company, but that hasn’t stopped it from embracing the cloud.

For a recent project, the company adopted the U.S. Air Force’s new Kessel Run agile software development methodology, which relies heavily upon the use of cloud infrastructure.

Developed by the Air Force in partnership with Pivotal Software Inc., Kessel Run was launched initially to rescue a $745 million contract that had produced nothing over a five-year span. Using faster DevOps development techniques and a cloudlike platform as a service enabled Raytheon to dramatically cut delivery times.

cloud migration

“What took years now takes months and days,” David Appel, vice president of defense and civil solutions at Raytheon, said at the VMworld conference this year in an interview on theCUBE, SiliconANGLE’s streaming video platform (below). “It’s been a fantastic journey.”

Delivering applications more quickly to the field has improved flight crew safety and enabled the Air Force to realize $200,000 a day in fuel cost savings months earlier than it would have seen using traditional “waterfall” development. For Raytheon, one of the most eye-opening benefits was its ability to find people.

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