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The journey from legacy infrastructure to 3-tier architecture, to virtualization and eventually public and private cloud so an organization can digitally transform can be very complex, disappointing, expensive and frustrating, but the reality is, it doesn’t have to be.
To reduce the complexities, unanticipated budget shortfalls, frustrations and disappointments it is necessary for Corporate Executives and IT Professionals to look at the journey from the cloud down, not the infrastructure up. In short, the desired end result of any cloud strategy should be to attain a premium experience for everyone who interacts with cloud technology, regardless if they are an administrator, developer, tenant or an end-user. Doing so will provide the desired positive end results while minimizing risk.
Achieving a premium experience requires that your cloud is reliable, high performing, easy to use, easy to manage and secure but before you make your infrastructure choice it is just as important to ensure that you recognize and have a plan to overcome the 7 barriers to successful cloud adoption and digital transformation. Many cloud analyst research studies have concluded 70% of all digital transformation projects fail completely or fail to achieve the desired business and IT outcomes.
So, what are these 7 barriers? CHANGE, COMPETENCY, COMPLEXITY, COMPLIANCE, CONFIDENCE CONTROL and COST.
Change is something humans naturally resist, we like reliability, stability, we like consistency. Managing change doesn’t come naturally, so the easier it is the better. Change can cause fear and resistance, for instance IT staff might fear that simplification of daily operation through automation might make them obsolete versus concentrating on how it can improve their work life balance. Once IT staff realize automation can reduce the need to respond to down-time outages, slow-time latency or the need to over-manage resource pools, the more valuable they become. IT staff makes it possible for them to be more innovative and work on mission-critical projects versus infrastructure life-cycle management. This increases their contribution to the business and therefore profitability, making them indispensable. Change is good when it enhances the professional growth and value of the people it impacts.
Competency is a barrier to cloud adoption because moving from familiar legacy infrastructure to a cloud model often requires you to acquire new tribal knowledge not to mention staying up to date on the latest information and constant training. For example, the OpenStack project is a global collaboration of developers and cloud computing technologists producing the open standard cloud computing platform for both public and private clouds. It is backed by a vibrant and diverse community of developers as well as some of the biggest names in the industry. It includes over 90,000 members, is supported by over 650 companies in over 180 countries and includes over 20 million lines of ever changing code. It all sounds great, the problem is staying up to date isn’t easy, and the implementation, deployment, operation, maintenance and support is complicated by differing opinions, as well as trial and error. The ability to maintain software patches and security updates alone makes OpenStack cloud implementations almost as complicated as managing legacy infrastructure. It is in a sense its own religion and one must essentially dedicate themselves to becoming an OpenStack Guru, there is no dipping your toes into it or being able to manage the entire life-cycle with just an IT generalist, which brings us to our next barrier to successful cloud adoption.
The complexities associated with life-cycle management of legacy physical and virtual infrastructure is one of the primary drivers behind the shift to cloud it is also one of the primary barriers to cloud adoption. The changes associated with IT processes and procedures, the refactoring of legacy applications, then there are the migration concerns, plus having to coordinate the individual datacenter elements of networking, storage and servers, which all have to be patched, secured and supported. If not planned properly this can lead to significant disruption to IT and business operations, which impacts internal stakeholders as well as external customers interactions and of course, profitability. Adherence to a specific “IT Religion” should never be allowed to introduce new complexities and take hold or it will destroy simplification efforts, inhibit innovation and make the acceleration of time-to-value impossible. Cloud adoption must be non-disruptive, elegantly simple and very easy to implement, deploy, operate, maintain and support. The additional complexities and intricate nature of legal guidelines regarding data gravity and locality bring us to the next barrier.
Compliance is an incredibly important consideration before adopting a cloud model. Local, state and federal government, healthcare providers and financial institutions are just some of the verticals which have very demanding restrictions regarding data gravity, locality, retention, and security. Then there are specific regions of the globe with very strict regulations regarding practically all data regardless of vertical. Some government agencies for example may not want any connection to a public cloud via the internet and therefore have a requirement for running a “disconnected private cloud” to add an extra measure of security and intrusion prevention. It would be advisable in such cases that their cloud infrastructure include integrated back-up, recovery, archiving, and high-availability, not to mention a method for special patch and update support on-site. A private cloud model is the only choice for such a scenario, as it helps to mitigate data security risks as well as the chances of civil liability or criminal prosecution. More on the private cloud model later.
The next barrier to cloud adoption is confidence or a lack of it. Moving to an emerging technology and the changes associated with it can result in widespread panic the first time anything goes wrong or fails to provide the benefits desired. Worse still is the decision to do nothing, cloud isn’t going away it needs to be embraced if you plan to maintain a competitive edge. The horror stories involving public cloud data leaks, millions of dollars in lost productivity leads to a lack of employer, shareholder, customer confidence and unanticipated costs overruns is not justification enough to avoid cloud. It simply means that you should choose the right cloud model for your application, it should be one that you can have complete confidence in.
Control and Cost
Which brings us to the last two barriers to cloud adoption, control and cost. IT staff is used to having complete control of their infrastructure, apps, data and services. Business leaders need to control costs and ensure that costs are reliably predictable and repeatable should they choose to extend their cloud ecosystem across multiple geographic locations. The ability to reliably predict and control all aspects of the cloud ecosystem life-cycle is extremely important to internal IT staff and managed service providers. Predictable and repeatable experiences associated with implementation, deployment, operation, maintenance and support saves time and represents more potential for growth and profit.
Overcoming the barriers to successful cloud adoption and digital transformation require choosing the right cloud model for your IT staff as well as your business. Some customers choose only one model, but many use multiple clouds to meet ever growing needs and demands. The need for multiple clouds and the future of geo-distributed cloud a reflection of the global economy. Mergers, acquisitions and strategic partnerships highlight the need to control shadow IT while sharing apps, data and services in a timely cost effective and secure manner. Choosing the right cloud model to achieve successful digital transformation can make all the difference.
Cloudistics; Private Cloud Premium Experience
Since 2013, Cloudistics has exceeded the promises of the IT status quo— public cloud, private cloud, or virtualization— by delivering a private cloud with a premium experience. Our aim is to break the barriers to cloud adoption by giving you a new way to unlock the power of your people. In a world that’s moving toward no ops and serverless computing, operational simplicity is becoming a critical business requirement. Without it, your staff lack the agility and efficiency needed to deliver compelling value. And your business outcomes are restricted and delayed by legacy technologies.
Cloudistics Cloud Platform enables the following benefits;
* Go from crate to implementing, deploying and using your fully-composable, software-defined private cloud in 5 hours 15 minutes.
* Rapidly deploy new applications and services in just minutes through the integrated Cloudistics Application Marketplace.
*Independently scale network, storage and compute building blocks without the overhead or restrictions of clustered environments
* Automatically automate the orchestration and optimization of physical and virtual application resources from a single, web-based console, anytime, anywhere.
* Give administrators, developers, tenants and end-users self-service access to resources in seconds.
* Leverage proactive hardware and software support at your fingertips, by click, email, or phone.
* Trust your infrastructure management to an IT Generalist instead of a team of IT Specialists.
Cloudistics Cloud Platform ships with the software and hardware necessary to easily implement, deploy, operate, maintain and proactively support your private cloud and provide everyone who interacts with it a premium experience. The platform includes these integrated features at NO EXTRA COST;
- Cloud-based Management
- Integrated KVM Hypervisor
- Back-up, Recovery, Archiving and High-Availability
- Automated Orchestration of Application Resources
- Application Marketplace with API and Application Templates
- Analytics, Usage Reporting, Chargeback/Showback
- Hypervisor hardened security
- Proactive, seamless patch and update without disruption
- 3 or 5-year EarlyInsight chat, email and phone support
Cloudistics delivers a premium experience that enables you to declare your independence from the cloud status quo and restores the work-life balance your IT department wants with the predictability, reliability, ease of use and cost controls you need to gain immediate time-to-value as soon as the platform is implemented and deployed in your data center.