There are multiple factors that IT leaders need to take into account before building their “Pervasive IT” strategy:
Segmentation of application landscape: A careful assessment of the application landscape would be the first step in planning a Pervasive IT strategy. After gathering inventory, performance and dependency metrics of the applications landscape, it needs to be segmented into apps that needs to be retired, refactored or rebuilt to survive in a virtualized and distributed environment like the Cloud. It also needs to be segmented based on its Availability, Security and Performance requirements. A good cloud assessment toolkit can help identify cloud-ready apps.
Core vs ancillary infra services: Enterprises are actively looking at leveraging public cloud for ancillary infra services such as Disaster Recovery, Backup, Archival, Dev/Test etc. In a virtual environment, implementing disaster recovery in public cloud can significantly bring the costs down. As the storage costs keep going down, backup and archival also becomes reliable and cost-effective. In a cloud, Dev/ Test environments can be raised and shutdown in minutes, improving agility and rollback of environments convenient to Developers and Testers working on various branches of the code with different operating conditions.
Workload mobility: Based on the changing criticality of workloads, organizations may want to shuffle the placements of their workloads quite often. Critical workloads which needs to be on low latency networks may need to be placed on-premise. The same workload may lose its criticality after sometime and may be blocking expensive resources on-premise. Pervasive IT needs to have the capability to move workloads across cloud environments seamlessly, carrying along with them the security controls and policies.
Service Broker: In the Pervasive IT environment, where IT Services are sourced from multiple suppliers, IT leaders need to plan for a central brokering engine which can serve as a marketplace with catalog items from different suppliers, comparison of suppliers providing similar services, consolidated cost projects etc.
Security: When IT was limited within an enterprise datacenter, hardened security was implemented in the “perimeter” with all kinds of controls such as intrusion detection, prevention, firewall, anti-virus/ anti-spam and so on. As perimeters are broken in a Pervasive IT fabric, the security moves up to individual workloads. Each application is expected to protect its own availability and data security. However, the infrastructure needs to provide the foundational elements such as identity, authentication and authorization, roles and access etc. across different cloud environments.
Financial impact: It may not be the cost alone which drives public cloud adoption. In fact, there are studies that indicate on-premise datacenter services being cheaper than a comparable public cloud service. However, public cloud makes financial sense if the utilization is sporadic and not continuous. Below is a report from ISG: