Digital transformation as a buzzword has been around for a while now – 70% of companies had a digital transformation strategy in place even before the pandemic . However, the pandemic accelerated and accentuated the shift toward digital transformation propelled by the need for agility to adapt to the ‘new normal’ of work and life as well as the onslaught of new connected technologies including 5G, Edge and other AI-powered solutions.
In most instances, digital transformation is a gradual evolution, a process where organizations leverage digital technologies consistently to transform their existing legacy business processes and services to meet evolving market and customer needs. To be truly successful, this evolution requires a paradigm shift in the way businesses operate and deliver products and services to their customers. Digital transformation drives innumerable benefits for organizations including real time access to vast amounts of data, as well as scalability, agility and innovation. With data-driven insights, organizations can understand customers better and align business strategies for success.
Accelerating digital transformation with the cloud
Today, organizations are focusing on agility and leveraging automation to facilitate faster time to market. The cloud is a key driver for this renewed focus and forms the foundation for the new agile business world. For organizations that have depended on traditional data centers, migrating mission-critical IT workloads to the cloud helps meet the need for agility and scalability.
Is cloud adoption easy? Is it for everyone?
The statistics are overwhelming and the writing on the wall is clear. There is no doubt that the cloud is the way forward. And yet, there is no single proven framework for the success or type of cloud computing that works for enterprises. There are different computing models and services that have evolved to meet the technology demands of organizations. Primarily, enterprises choose between three options for cloud deployment methods —public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud. In addition, service models could range from software as a service (SaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS), or platform as a service (PaaS). The deployment methods and services depend on business needs. However, for organizations, the choice is far from being simple, given the history of their tech stack and existing infrastructure provisioning.
Let us examine some history of the evolution of cloud migration to understand why the cloud migration journey can be complex for organizations. Over seven decades ago, IBM led the pack in creating the computing age and developed critical applications, sophisticated modeling for large scale transactions, and workloads for large organizations as this offered stability, security and scalability. There have been several innovations and developments in the computing world subsequently, but the mainframes have prevailed. Consider this: about 67 of the Fortune 100 and 45 of the 50 top banks are still on mainframe servers.
However, the mainframe servers did not address the needs of medium to small sized businesses. And so, the IBM Power processor was launched in the 1980s, in the RS6000 and AS400 servers. The RS6000 was running AIX, IBM´s Unix version and the AS400 was designed for OS400 (now called IBM i). Organizations are looking at migrating IBM Power workloads to the cloud to improve flexibility and reduce risk. They also seek cloud-native services that enhance core business applications and support agile development and innovation. The cloud also ensures high availability and disaster recovery capabilities for business connectivity. Plus, several businesses run traditional and mission-critical applications on these servers. However, a lift-and-shift approach is challenging for the IBM Power workload migrations, given that these applications are written for IBM Power Systems server hardware. And moving them to the major public clouds cannot be done without refactoring and rewriting significant amounts of application code — associated resource, time, and cost considerations are also significantly huge.
How to bridge the need gap in cloud migration
Skytap on Azure is a cloud computing service that runs traditional enterprise workloads natively in the cloud. Skytap allows companies of any size running IBM AIX, IBM i, Linux based operating systems, or traditional x86 workloads to easily migrate workloads to Azure. It helps to mitigate risks in the migration, reduce complexity, and minimize disruptions to business continuity.
The Skytap environments replicate on-premises data center environments, including infrastructure, storage, networking, OS, middleware, memory state and applications. Organizations can migrate complete environments with agility, depending on the size of the workload.
With Skytap, companies get access to core cloud infrastructure capabilities including capacity on-demand, self service provisioning, high availability, and associated benefits. In addition, organizations can also manage the diverse portfolio in their IT landscape. With Azure, these organizations can leverage the benefits of the cloud faster and innovate better with the integration of existing legacy applications to other Azure services. Skytap enables IBM Power workloads to run on Azure without any rewriting, thus creating a faster path to the cloud at lower costs. It provides developers with the ability to innovate across these applications at speed and scale through integration into Azure’s full suite of other services such as analytics and compute, along with the added benefit of instant core cloud infrastructure capabilities.
Further, Skytap provides opportunities to:
A new lease of life to traditional infrastructure with Skytap on Azure
There are several use cases for leveraging Skytap on Azure that can enhance the migration of existing enterprise workloads to the cloud and enable smoother functionality:
Wipro is a certified Microsoft Gold Partner and MSP expert. Wipro, Skytap and Microsoft Azure provide a joint service framework that helps reduce lead time and effort while enabling our customers to scale the application to production easily and quickly with enterprise-wide service level agreements.
Wipro’s research revealed that companies expect success from their cloud journeys, and 80% of them expect the cloud implementations to be partially completed, if not fully on the cloud. The goal of any transformation initiative is to modernize applications to gain greater insights into the business through the availability of data-driven insights. A fragmented application landscape across different infrastructure does not allow the business to deliver on its goals. Hosting a few applications on the cloud and some others on an on-premises, mid-range server may lead to security risks, not to mention that gleaning data to gain business focused insights would be difficult. Hence, leveraging Skytap on Azure helps enterprises truly realize the benefits of the cloud.
To know more, please get in touch with us at Azure-Marketing@wipro.com
GM & Presales Head - Cloud, Cloud & Infrastructure Services, Wipro
Rajiv has about 23 years of experience in the IT Industry. He has played a crucial role in developing next-generation transformative offerings like Azure Stack and rapidly growing the cloud practice across geographies. He is a member of the Association of Enterprise Architects and has many leading certifications like TOGAF, Azure Cloud architect Expert, Google Professional architect and AWS Solution Architect.