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Margaret Valtierra

Margaret Valtierra


Session Name: Enabling a Self-Service Public Cloud Culture at Morningstar

A big reason I joined Morningstar and the Cloud Services team was the deliberate, builder-first approach to their public cloud program. My now teammates structured a way to have strong guardrails for teams developing financial services products but with the freedom of a self-service approach within business units. Based on the Amazon AWS Shared Responsibility Model, our public cloud program allows developers to build and take a self-service approach to creating AWS resources. We trust developers to own their tools and process within a secure, reliable public cloud structure. Now operating within those guardrails has been the long cultural shift we are still promoting. We’ve unleashed teams to build within their own AWS accounts. Cloud Services still nudges developers into security and best practices.

Three of the best nudges our team uses are required, hardened AMIs (Amazon Machine Images), automated scanners to detect and report compliance, and our Cost Star Rating to publicize cost optimization best practices. Morningstar rates mutual funds, so one of the most effective ways to share feedback on effective cloud usage is our internal team rating system. With strong foundations in place the Cloud Services team is expanding our automated scanning for best practices, including more teams in owning the foundations, and encouraging builders to share knowledge across units. This talk looks back at the how the self-service approach has enabled teams to quickly adopt public cloud in the financial services sector. I’ll list key early decisions that allowed the centralized program to benefit developers across business units. Finally, I’ll review how we scale the guardrails to the entire organization and continue to nudge teams to follow best practices.

Speaker Bio:

Margaret Valtierra is a Program Manager at Morningstar. She is an AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate. Margaret runs the AWS Chicago user group, Community Day Midwest, and is a global core organizer for the AWS Community Days. When not at work she can usually be found at the dog park with her dog, Peanut.