General fit for the cloud
There are many compelling reasons to favor on premise IT, but the rising maturity of cloud computing has some reconsidering their strategy.
Your answers show that your organization does not consider maintaining on-premise IT infrastructure and operations as a high priority sustaining its business. Your answers show that, for your organization, maintaining on-premise IT infrastructure and operations is important for sustaining the business.
When architecting an infrastructure to satisfy your organizational imperatives, balancing your requirements with the necessary levels of investment in physical infrastructure, development, maintenance, and specialist skills leads many businesses to follow a diversified cloud strategy, incorporating both on-premise and off-premise solutions.
Sensitive workloads and data
Industry compliance and regulatory measures surrounding workload processing and data management are becoming progressively more stringent. Your cloud strategy should include should include a solution that isolates, secures, and controls sensitive workloads and data.
While you have indicated that this is not a priority for your organization, you should consider that data is becoming more and more valuable, the threat landscape more and more unpredictable, and accountability for sound data management more essential than ever. You have indicated that you recognize this as a priority for your organization. Rightly so, as data is becoming more and more valuable, the threat landscape more and more unpredictable, and accountability for sound data management more essential than ever.
Open source and vendor-led solutions
Organizations sometimes choose to invest in technologies and skills aligned to specific technology vendors. While standardized operations and consolidated skill sets can be advantageous, the challenge with vendor lock-in can be a lack of flexibility and breadth.
Your answers suggest that your cloud strategy need not align with a particular vendor technology. This outlook opens the door to a breadth of opportunities for delivering cloud in your business, and could facilitate a level of cloud innovation not achievable in a traditional vendor environment. Your answers suggest that you will build your cloud strategy on the foundations of your vendor solution. Major vendors all offer pathways to the cloud.
Today, open-source is also a credible alternative to traditional vendor-supported technologies. But, for those who follow this approach, deep expertise in customizing, administering and supporting these technologies is a requirement.
Your feedback points to your organization being unwilling to entertain the option of open-source. Your feedback points to your organization appreciating the value in customizing and supporting open-source technologies.
Using open-source for a customized cloud implementation not only requires a deep expertise in the foundational technologies, but also additional development effort to integrate, orchestrate and automate. It’s important to be aware the open source also involves a sustained commitment to support and update technologies, integrations, and automations as open-source communities evolve these components.
Is it as easy as one? Two? Or three?
IT is frequently challenged to deliver a diverse range of applications and services across their organization. Today’s question is whether to consolidate to a single platform, or use multiple cloud platforms that suit the requirements of each workload.
Your feedback implies that consolidating workloads to a single cloud platform would be your preference. In this case, consider that simplicity may come at a cost of flexibility, and a single environment may not suit the disparate requirements of individual workloads. Your feedback implies your strategy could encompass more than one cloud platform. In this case, you should consider the benefits of being able to manage all your cloud platforms through a unified user experience, and if it is important to re-deploy, replicate, or even migrate workloads and data across them.
Of course, it’s essential for your cloud strategy to be versatile and flexible, not only supporting a diverse set of workloads, but scalable to cope with spikes in demand.
You have suggested that changes in your business activity are reasonably predictable and the corresponding demands made of your IT infrastructure are well-understood. A multi-cloud model could be made to work in your case. That said, orchestrating across clouds is no simple business, and the development effort can be significant when you’re looking to automate the adaptation of computing, networking, and storage configurations, as well as converting and migrating applications, services and their data across clouds. Consider too how orchestration will be sustained as your workload configurations and operations evolve with your business. Your answers suggest that things change in your business, and not always predictably. Hybrid cloud operating technology facilitates interoperability of multiple cloud infrastructures, acting as a common layer between unique cloud systems that use different architectures and formats. This approach provides the highest degree of on-demand agility, but requires a commitment to that singular operating technology that spans your cloud platforms–creating a reliance on a particular technology ecosystem or vendor.
Applications and provider lock in
Many organizations are simply moving their existing, traditional applications and services to the cloud. Taking it a step further are those who develop or rebuild their applications as cloud-native, relieving some of their development and operational burden and offering more workload scalability.
From your answers, it seems your organization intends to continue operating traditional applications and services as you consider leveraging cloud platforms. Over time, as you journey further into cloud, it might be worth examining the implications of going cloud native. From your answers, investing in creating cloud-native applications appears to be important to your strategy, so you should closely examine what that means for the makeup of your application landscape and the investment in development and refactoring.
Cloud-native application architecture and the platform services they use can help IT organizations keep pace with the evolving demands of business; however, if the implementation depends upon the facilities delivered by a specific public cloud provider, then your organization runs the risk of being locked in to that environment. Some public cloud providers do support application mobility across their public infrastructure, and even to on-premise infrastructure deployments of their platform, but there are often technical limitations to be considered.
You may not currently be concerned about architectural lock-in to any particular cloud provider, but there are other options to consider. You have expressed concern about architectural lock-in to any particular cloud provider as your business considers leveraging platform services or building cloud-native applications.
To avoid cloud-platform lock-in, some organizations deploy services in their own cloud so they can flexibly migrate and operate applications from any cloud platform.
Scale, elasticity and flexibility
Public cloud platforms deliver dynamic scaling of computing, networking, and storage capacity independently. You might consider this elasticity important. In private clouds, the same elasticity comes in various degrees with some hyperconverged infrastructures pooling, provisioning, and scaling in combined units, whilst others deliver the capability to scale asymmetrically. Both models provide a solid foundation, but it’s how you’d prefer to manage the raw resources that will decide between them. Another consideration is how your own applications and services typically consume IT resources over time. For example, does your application data grow disproportionately to your computing capacity requirements?
In your case, you’ve indicated that the independent elasticity of IT resources isn’t important to your organization. This means that a hyperconverged infrastructure foundation for your private cloud should be in your consideration set. In your case, you’ve indicated that the independent elasticity of IT resources is important to your organization. This is a fundamental architectural feature to consider when evaluating private cloud implementations.
Most IT organizations have standard operating procedures to manage the complexities of traditional IT infrastructure, including how they procure, organize, provision, and maintain IT resources. These standards often map back to business-level operations and workflows, so whether you’d preserve of discard established practices when moving to a cloud environment could be an important consideration.
Your answers suggest that maintaining existing processes is not a high priority for your organization, which means that you’re less likely to need a highly customized cloud implementation. Your answers suggest that this is a high priority for your organization, which could point to a customized cloud implementation that holds on to your processes.
Multi-tenancy and performance
In traditional infrastructures, computing, networking, and storage can be fine-tuned by a team of experts with specialist skills. The same is true in a cloud environment – for example, high-performance storage for extreme data processing applications. This precision and customization is often more challenging to deliver in a cloud IT-as-a-Service model.
Preserving this level of customized control is not a high priority in your case. Turnkey cloud platforms that are pre-integrated and pre-automated could save time and cost in your implementation, rapidly delivering cloud agility out-of-the-box without the technical complexity, similar to a public cloud experience. Preserving specific controls over placement and performance tuning appears to be a high priority for your organization. Be sure to evaluate the investment in skills required to facilitate this in a self-service and fully automated cloud platform. Some cloud implementation tools may provide more customization flexibility than others.
Internal policies or external regulations may stipulate that an organization’s applications and workloads must be secured or isolated, even from one another. Traditionally, these deployments would be isolated on dedicated infrastructure, allowing close control.
While your organization doesn’t currently face any strict regulation that imposes these requirements, and would therefore need to be applied to your cloud, keep in mind that these challenges frequently arise as a business naturally evolves. Your answers suggest that your organization has this requirement, meaning that your cloud infrastructure would need to replicate any isolation or security requirements.
Single cloud, Hybrid cloud, or Multi cloud? Custom, or Turnkey solutions? It’s a lot to consider. Cloud strategies can be complex and there are many organizational and operational priorities to consider before deciding on the best route for you. While the diversity of options is great, you may feel you need more help reviewing your organization’s cloud strategy with an expert team who has robust experience. Our team are only a phone call away, so reach out to your local Lenovo representative and we’ll be happy to assist in determining the best route for you.