Over the years of helping companies with their cloud strategy, one of the most common questions we keep getting asked is “Is the Cloud right for me?” — and they won’t take “It depends” as an answer.
In spite of the large number of variables that impact this answer, here at Gravitant we have been able to summarize them into two basic dimensions:
Cloud Readiness – the state of being prepared for operation in the cloud (driven by architecture feasibility, platform/OS popularity, and application complexity)
Cloud Benefit – the degree of improvement derived by operating in the cloud (driven by TCO savings, application performance, and network performance)
In other words, a higher readiness index means there is less effort needed to “get to the cloud,” and a higher benefit index indicates better agility once you are in the cloud. While these dimensions are orthogonal to each other, they need to be studied together in order to answer the question!
AWS represents disruptive innovation. In fact, AWS could be an acronym for agility, web-scale and simplicity. Those are the primary reasons why business units are choosing AWS over working with IT.
According to research firm R.W. Baird, AWS revenue will hit $10 billion by 2016.1 Many times, these business units are circumventing IT to procure, order, provision and use these AWS resources. In doing so, they create a situation where it’s hard to track assets, govern the ordering and design process and control costs. What happens when you don’t get a grip on AWS? It can end up becoming costly even more so than private cloud. Continue reading
“Is moving to the cloud right for my application” and “Am I exceeding my cloud budget” are two of the most common questions that customers ask. That’s why we’re happy to introduce Application Screener and Budget Management features in Gravitant cloudMatrix that help provide customers the answers to these questions.
Application Screener is born from analytics and a dynamically updated customer knowledge base. It provides clarity and confidence on an application’s cloud readiness, cloud benefit, and target infrastructure.
With over 40 price reductions so far, Amazon has been very generous to their existing and potential AWS customers. Here’s an overview of AWS price reductions derived from Gravitant’s electronic services catalog.
To modify a phrase from Winston Churchill, 2013 marked the end of the beginning of the cloud piloting phase in the enterprise. Cloudwashing (e.g. calling virtualized infrastructure a private cloud) gave way to true cloud projects, companies began to spend money on IaaS in earnest, SaaS continued its rapid adoption and PaaS talk turned to action.
All of this has driven enterprise IT to the harsh realization that current governance, operations, service delivery and technology architectures will have to change to accommodate the cloud, or change will be forced on them. Business leaders (e.g. the CMO) will take their budget away and have less and less need for IT (with every SaaS subscription).
2014 ushers in a new world of opportunity for enterprise IT. But they have to quickly make hard choices, for the cloud will not wait for them to get their act together. It will disrupt every IT structure in the enterprise and make the CIO and the IT department irrelevant if there is no pro-active action. IT will have to operate like any public cloud provider, or go away.
The theme for next week’s Gartner Data Center conference, “Taking Charge, Leading Change — Your I&O Transformation Can’t Wait, is a real wake up call for today’s I&O leaders. Gartner’s focus on operational excellence highlights how the line-of-business and information technology (IT) management are being entangled by the fast-moving and ever-changing technology landscape. It also showcases today’s leadership challenge of how to transform that entanglement into an interweaved value producing process. Continue reading
From where the IT channel started to today, there have been many changes and evolutions. The traditional IT channel started as a marketing and service delivery arm for tech vendors, with the internet it moved to the age of the Managed Service Provider, and now with cloud it is entering the stage of the Cloud Services Broker. As channel partners (IT Solution Provider – ITSP) move to this next generation, I would like to dive deeper into how we got here and how the channel can adopt the Cloud Services Brokerage model to be profitable.
The pioneers of the American West were the cowboys — rugged individuals who didn’t care much for laws or process. Similarly, the pioneer users of cloud computing have been app developers looking for a quick way to get the resources they need to do their work. Rather than waiting around for IT to deploy the infrastructure resources they needed, they were able to whip out their credit cards and buy virtual machines on Amazon Web Services or other public cloud providers. Rules? Process? Who needed that?
While cloud was easy for app developers, it was a different story for mainstream IT. They couldn’t just buy cloud resources — they had to procure them. They couldn’t just run something in any arbitrary cloud — they had to worry about cost, security, SLAs. Developers can look like heroes for getting the app done quickly, but IT has to worry about the whole lifecycle of the app.
Next week, Gravitant’s Analytics team will travel to Minneapolis to oversee the Cloud Computing sessions at the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) annual meeting. With more than 1,000 sessions and 4,000 papers, INFORMS covers advanced analytics research and industry practices. Every year, INFORMS invites top experts to organize and manage a group of sessions under their specialized topics. The cluster chairmen conducting these sessions are highly recognized for their research in the community as well as their influence in the industry.
Gravitant’s Director of Advanced Analytics, Dr. Ilyas Iyoob, will chair the Cloud Computing sessions at the INFORMS conference for the second year in a row, conducting a number of sessions on the topic of cloud computing from large Fortune 500 organizations and global Tier 1 universities. Alongside Dr. Iyoob and presenting Gravitant’s research for the first time is Aaron Yan from the University of Texas. Aaron has worked directly under Dr. Iyoob conducting research and building algorithms for the topic he’s presenting: Capacity Reservation Policies in Cloud Computing Marketplaces.
The 2013 Cloud Computing Survey by North Bridge Venture Partners and GigaOm Research of 843 respondents confirmed that while accelerated growth is projected for cloud services (like IaaS, SaaS and PaaS), technology buyers are struggling with increasing IT complexity driven by the cloud, interoperability issues and cost challenges. The survey showed that CIOs are poised to invest significantly to address these issues. However, I believe it’s critical for CIOs and CFOs to ask a few important questions before they open their checkbooks.
As a former CTO of a large enterprise IT organization, I know that the traditional IT management framework does a great job in obfuscating cost and increasing complexity. Indeed I saw that attempts at cost and complexity management barely worked despite a lot of bodies and point tools being thrown at the problem.
The IT framework prevalent in most enterprises is almost impossible to adapt to successfully operate in the complex cloud ecosystem, pictured below. Without a complete rethink of skills, processes, management platforms and performance metrics, I believe cloud adoption will struggle.