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Cloud has been the reigning buzz word in almost all organizations whether big or small across the globe. There has been numerous research and analysis in this space from all quarters. Every organization is considering how cloud can be leveraged to achieve their business needs either in a big way or at least partially.
The perceived benefits of cloud adoption by organizations are:
Reduced cost of ownership
Increased business focus
Decreased internal administration
Accelerated provisioning cycle
Compliance to security as applicable
Anytime, anywhere access
Common challenges organizations face while adopting cloud are decisions on the following:
Choosing the right type of cloud – private, public, hybrid or no cloud
Right strategy for deployment
Right choice of providers
This article aims to provide insight into choosing the right type of cloud and the prevalent adoption trends existing in the industry.
Key factors that influence how much cloud in an enterprise:
Business objectives- More often it is seen that IT and business objectives drive the model of IT services. Organizations today seek technology services to deliver more value to the business and focus less on the run and maintenance-related services.
Investments in infrastructure- Enterprises who have invested in data centers are constantly on the lookout for how they can deliver more with less. Those who have not invested in data centers seek a cost effective and flexible model.
Nature of application workloads- Typically it is the application workloads that play an important part in determining the quantum of cloud adoption. These could be business applications or infrastructure applications such as email, collaboration, and virtual desktops.
Security and compliance- Regulatory compliance is a major decision factor in cloud adoption as well. These are specific to the industry vertical and geography.
Internal IT teams appetite for transformation- Yet another driving factor is the internal IT team’s motivation to adopt cloud. Cloud architects are increasingly becoming relevant and most sought after for an organization looking to adopt cloud.
Choosing the Right Type of Cloud
Common attributes of private cloud adoption are:
Existing investment in datacenters
Data Security, a major concern
Typical industries – banking and financial, government, and defense
The following scenarios are known to enable faster private cloud adoption:
Infrastructure applications- Messaging and collaboration are the low hanging applications that are being migrated to the cloud. Almost all the organizations venturing into the cloud sphere begin with migrating the messaging infrastructure to the cloud
Business workloads- Virtualized workloads or published applications are the next category that is migrated to the cloud
Business scenario for mergers and acquisition- Organizations who are in the process of either mergers or divestures due to business reasons also look towards adopting the cloud to accelerate the business process unification or separation
Technology refresh- End of life/support of either hardware or software is also a key driving factor for cloud adoption. Organizations consider migrating to the cloud to minimize capital expenses in assets and total cost of ownership.
Consumerization of IT- Organizations today seek to provide an end user experience as opposed to a locked down desktop estate in the form of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) or mobility. In order to ensure they have secured back-end access to their virtual desktops and applications many adopt the private cloud
The following scenarios typically push organizations to adopt cloud in the later stages:
High performance applications
Legacy applications that are usually sun-set and need considerable budget and time before the newer versions can be moved to cloud
Common attributes of public cloud adoption:
Small and medium enterprises
Currently leased or hosted datacenters
Security, though it is not a major driver
Typical industries – publishing, retail, travel, and hospitality
The following scenarios enable faster public cloud adoption:
Test and development environment: All SAAS applications are the most common candidates that an organization considers for moving to public cloud
Enterprise social and collaboration applications: Organizations wherein users will need to share and work on huge volume of data or on graphic intensive applications such as in the media and publishing industry
Seasonal business peaks and troughs: The current trend sees an increasing move to public cloud for certain applications require heavy usage and are accessed by a high volume of users/customers during the peak season
Distributed workplaces: Some business applications are accessed by users who are geographically dispersed and while the other applications are accessed frequently by home workers and the sales force
Hosting contract renewals: End of contract is also a key juncture to consider public cloud adoption to minimize capital expenses in hosting and total cost of ownership,/li>
It has been observed that public and private cloud providers are providing a wider berth of offerings for enterprises to overcome current cloud adoption challenges. Clients should now consider the right deployment options, evolve a new process, and technology platforms to enable unified management between the individual elements in the hybrid environment which are bound to exist.
About the author
Devasena Ravisankar is an electronics engineer with over 17 years’ experience in the IT infrastructure services industry. She holds numerous infrastructure technology certifications apart from being a TOGAF 9 certified enterprise architect. Her current role includes leading a technology center of excellence within TCS’ IT infrastructure services unit.