Optimisation can change your business

If the cloud is optimised, companies can benefit from current technology investments and skills.

Read time 4min 30sec

The advent of cloud computing hasn't only drastically changed the face of computing, it has altered provisioning and management. This is important because workloads in the cloud are not unlike those in a traditional computing environment. To get the most out of IT infrastructures and cloud investments, companies must optimise their workloads.

Core to the success of any cloud transformation is the ability to optimise new and older legacy application workloads. Ensuring the correct workload sits in the appropriate environment allows businesses to speed up cloud transformation.

There are a number of IT trends that have transformed the industry, and birthed opportunities for enterprises and service providers alike. For example, the surge in applications. There is now an application for every conceivable business function. Innovation and agility have spurred ways to enhance deployment and allow integration to be more flexible. To do this, new application and service architectures are allowing for better connectivity for the user, from wherever he may be - on-premises or remotely - at any time and across a slew of potential devices.

In with the new

In addition, applications that are built on new frameworks, with more comprehensive sets of common services, enable the user to harness productivity, collaboration and social networking to the maximum. Today's companies deploy frameworks across cloud, hybrid and on-premises environments.

The multitude of devices being used in today's enterprises are also playing a role. Consumer devices allow employees to work from practically any location, boosting productivity and saving time. Innovation in devices sees them offering instant connectivity and advanced features such as GPS, touchscreen, advanced cameras and video chatting. The user experience is far richer, and users are expecting a seamless experience when it comes to enterprise computing.

The trend, described as the 'consumerisation of IT', is the impact that consumer-originated technologies have on today's enterprises. It also sees enterprises taking advantage of new technologies and models that emerged from, and were developed by, the consumer space, such as cellphones and tablets. Enterprise IT teams now have opportunities to support and incorporate user experiences and devices, allowing for previously unimagined work scenarios, such as convenient, immediate access to data and applications in the field, and new contextually relevant device applications.

Dominant data

Another trend is big data. The exponential growth of available data creates significant challenges for IT. Today's world is more connected than ever before, and the proliferation of devices, such as smartphones, and GPS, wearable devices, mobile applications and social media - are producing more and more data. The surge of data from all these sources, combined with the power of myriad technologies aimed at the analysis of this data, is the core of what big data is all about. This data, which comes from a variety of sources, both internal and external and in structured and unstructured formats, is being used in a variety of powerful ways, and is changing the way business operate. However, too often, the sheer volume of this data prevents businesses from capturing and analysing it using traditional methods, such as storage in a database for query and analysis.

These challenges of big data, device proliferation and consumerisation can be largely addressed by cloud computing. This can help businesses find better ways to harness the latest IT innovations in their environments. If they are able to abstract resources from the separate hardware components, and put these into a shared pool of resources - all while keeping workloads isolated - it allows them to harness the benefits of highly agile workload provisioning, continuous availability, elastic scaling, and the best possible use of resources.

New application and service architectures are allowing for better connectivity for the user.

Bear in mind, once the cloud is optimised, businesses can take advantage of all current technology investments as well as skills. Moreover, an optimised cloud gives a scalable platform that is rich with features, and aids businesses of all types and sizes to save money and boost performance.

In addition, optimisation allows the company greater flexibility with its applications, and allows for applications to be built and deployed on-premises, in the cloud, or in a hybrid environment.

The end-users demand and expect access to their business applications, on any device, from any location. At the same time, they want a familiar, reliable, responsive and consistent experience. Businesses wishing to thrive need to offer this experience, and keep up with the pace of innovation, by remaining efficient, agile and cost-effective.

Recent research by RightScale shows while 93% of organisations are running applications in the cloud, 68% of enterprises run less than a fifth of their application portfolio in the cloud, and 55% report a significant portion of their existing application portfolio is not in the cloud, but is built with cloud-friendly architectures. Optimisation can provide additional opportunities to expand and enhance cloud adoption. If your business is not yet getting the benefits cloud computing offers, what are you waiting for?

Richard Vester
EOH divisional director of Cloud Services.

Richard Vester has been in the ICT industry since 1997, intimately involved in product development, operations and product marketing. He has worked for some of the top ICT companies in SA and joined EOH as the divisional director of Cloud Services in 2012. He has a detailed knowledge and understanding of cloud computing and has developed one of the leading cloud businesses in Africa.

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