You are completing your cloud journey or are already running applications on the cloud or hybrid cloud -- now what? You have invested cost and effort to do cloud adoption, discovery, application assessment, agile migration planning/design and sprint execution to cloud, and reached cloud steady state run – are we done?
It is time to continue to disrupt your business and IT services in a value-added manner. The rational to cloud disrupt is because managing cloud services is unlike managing your traditional on-premise environment. This is especially more true in a hybrid environment where you have complexity of both on-premise and multiple cloud environments - more resources, more vendors, more connections, more billing, more access points, more risk. The list goes on.
Managing cloud is unlike managing your traditional on-premise environment.
The goals of cloud disruption is …
- to grow
- to stay competitive with market changes
- to leverage the best use of the cloud
- to manage the chaos and complexity of a hybrid cloud ecosystem
- to reduce and control your spend on the cloud and have cost transparency
- to remain optimized
- to keep up and apply new cloud services updates/additions
Various cloud products and services have similarities (some with shade of difference) or overlapping features or are even duplication of capabilities. I recommend sifting through all the noise by bringing in cloud systems integration expertise with proven skills to assess your current cloud state, explore your business drivers, uncover challenges, prioritize/align IT solutions and implement inevitable disruption themes.
Here is a list of some value-add disruptions to include in your IT planning that will enhance the impact of your cloud solution.
- “Single Pane of Glass”: An enterprise view and control across your hybrid environment that has usable dashboards, cost transparency, billing, monitoring or advisory services and more.
- Evergreen as a Service: End of support services (OS, hardware, middleware), and storage lifecycle management as part of your IT fabric. Do you want to be more proactive versus continuously reacting to update demands? How do you remain compliant and secure when your OS is reaching end of support?
- TechOps – CI/CD: Pipeline optimization, application deployment as code, hybrid cloud (stack), recommended cloud services to monitor, forecast and action.
- Containerization: Deploy multiple images in a container engine that shares OS on the infrastructure. It reduces density through abstraction and enables development speed. Adopt Container as a Service. Can you benefit from lower overhead to run your applications?
- Serverless Computing: Automation of events through running code on cloud functions that eliminates monthly compute cost. You pay for execution time (typically will give you some tiered level of free time, runtime limitations) and pay for data transfer. You can script your systems to execute in functions without monthly on-demand compute cost. Did you know entrepreneurs run their web business that reaches millions of global customers without renting or owning a server?
- Value Extract: Take advantage of the various cloud products you already have to maximize usage for your business and IT solutions. Added features are always published as updates or paid add-ons. Do you know all the features of your cloud products or 3rd party software? Have you effectively leveraged tools you already own to further delight your customers?
- Performance as a Service: Manage your cloud capacity demands and optimize cloud resource to run your applications through collection of tools that gives you governance, centralized tracking/monitoring, self-healing and recommended actions. Are your planned cloud cost getting out of control?
- Content Delivery: Use of content delivery network to cache and securely deliver content (data, web pages, databases etc.) to your global customers. Do you want your customers to have access to data consistently faster and safer from anywhere in the globe?
- Big Data: Use data warehouse and data lakes to securely store structured and unstructured data from various sources (transactions, web traffic, social media, IoT device data) to be used for batch and real-time analytics and reporting. You can leverage cloud analytic tools to stream large volumes of real-time data for users to consume.
- Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery as a Service: Use of efficient, secure and inexpensive cloud resources to design and backup critical systems on cloud to ensure fault tolerance and to be able to recover from an incident to a catastrophe. Do you need an air gapped cloud environment with your critical systems?
- Compliance and Audit Management: Leverage the design of cloud resources to integrate and efficiently run compliance and audits in routine release cycles.
- A.I. Ops: Intelligent analytics, real time analytics of different data sources (e.g. web traffic, IoT) from structured to unstructured data; leverage Machine Learning to stay ahead of breaches and to uncover key information important to your business that you may be unware. It can learn, make connections and predictions from large amounts of data more accurately than humans.
- IT Governance: Improve future management of cloud resources through governance, like resource tagging, and monitoring centralized charges/billing management. Enable “Enterprisation” of hybrid cloud IT to standardize processes, IT resources, and reduce tower silos.
- Security As a Service: Insight into owned security products to best leverage into the cloud to maintain a secure posture in the ever-changing threat landscape. Just a note, the best security tool are ineffective against social engineering, so as a service recommends continuous training for all roles and at all levels.
- "Everything is Code": We can code everything on the cloud to automate procedures to control hardware. So take advantage of SD Wan to automate re-routing, resiliency against boundary attacks to protect your virtual network or application deployment templates to automate application package deployment.
With continuous disruptions, you will successfully get the best out of your cloud environment and meet your IT goals. However, remember it is still important to manage and implement your cloud changes within your IT program framework, manage it as agile projects and always apply lessons learned.