PKO BP: national cloud ready for users

Michał Potoczek explained that the transformation from traditional IT to cloud technology requires entrepreneurs to carry out a number of surveys and lay down a transformation strategy. Kalbar/TFN

We have completed the successive construction stage of a national cloud, we have launched services for the PKO Bank Polski and are ready to service further customers, PKO BP Vice-President and Supervisory Board head Adam Marciniak and National Cloud Operator CEO Michał Potoczek have informed PAP.

“We have made a further step in developing the National Cloud. Three independent server rooms built in referential cloud architecture will officially start up in Mazowsze province at the end of April. PKO BP is already using them to speed up software production and testing. This is the starting-point in developing cloud services, among others for Poland’s financial sector. The first region of the cloud is ready for new customers,” Adam Marciniak told PAP.

He added that by outsourcing the testing environment, PKO BP has already made the first steps in optimising the production of banking applications and switching from the traditional IT model to a new approach to IT tasks. “The National Cloud Operator is also starting up transformation services for our customers. We have signed several partnership agreements with big transformation entities,” Marciniak said.

Potoczek explained that the transformation from traditional IT to cloud technology requires entrepreneurs to carry out a number of surveys and lay down a transformation strategy. It is important to know which systems are to be transformed first and whether they need modifying to cloud requirements. “In order to make this migration easier for users, we have built up a network of transformation partners who specialise in consulting, IT architecture assessment and the production of applications. They will advise customers in the transformation process, e.g. in cost and risk assessment or the effective employment of cloud technology,” Potoczek said.

Marciniak and Potoczek told PAP that several agreements have already been sealed with firms which will help users switch to cloud technology. These are, among others, Asseco Poland, Accenture, Sygnity and DXC Technologies. “This is the first stage, we are also in talks with global players whose services the National Cloud Operator will offer in supplement to its own services,” Marciniak said.

Marciniak said PKO BP decided to invest in a company that offers cloud services, because as a public trust institution it noticed that there are many Polish institutions and enterprises for which there is no such offer. “We were practically forced into this initiative. On the one hand, the aim is to build a feasible offer and solutions for our bank, on the other, we see that this will be very important for our customers: SMEs, big corporations and local government agencies,” Marciniak said. “We cover enough of the market to not only offer our customers cloud services, but also build new technological solutions. Looking at current trends the cloud market appears quite promising,” he added. Marciniak also informed that PKO BP planned to launch further IT projects.

Cloud technology involves the supply of computing power (servers, software, data banks, networks, tools) via a private network or the internet. Instead of buying their own hardware and software, security systems etc., users purchase a service provided by an outside source, a cloud provider with its own infrastructure, equipment, security solutions and auxiliary services. This platform is accessible under a monthly subscription fee, whose amount depends on the usage of cloud resources.