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Leveraging Cloud

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Leveraging Cloud

Leveraging cloud technologies to reduce costs and overall impact of using an organisation’s own resources/data centres is now commonplace in the market. Cloud enables organisations to leverage highly available cloud infrastructure to deliver business value without the need to consider underlying physical infrastructure. Ordering servers/equipment, space planning for infrastructure and expensive server/cabinet co-location costs are increasingly becoming something of the past.

Aside from the technology change, one of the most fundamental shifts has been the resulting change in how we budget for these services from CAPEX to OPEX to facilitate faster decision making and shorter sales cycles. We don’t need to project out the cost savings of the capital expenditure over a number of years in the same way as with an operating expense.

Benefits of Leveraging Cloud

Move to OPEX costs

Greater control over ongoing costs

Visibility on usage and consumption

Greater scalability

Shorter innovation cycles

How to Leverage Cloud

As discussed previously, one of the key steps for any organisation embracing cloud is for them to engage their finance experts to understand how it impacts the budgeting processes within their organisation. The IT budget and financial model needs to be aligned with OPEX. 

The next big step is rearchitecting from physical to virtual infrastructure and understanding the effects of changing the organisations network boundaries.  This has an inevitable impact on security policies within the organisation. 

Organisations embracing cloud typically need to build a cloud migration strategy which will entail an audit of existing systems and their interdependencies. Not only that but also an audit of the financial model around that physical infrastructure and where the ROI has been realised on it. A cabinet of servers represents a capital expenditure and it should be understood whether the asset we are planning to move has returned its investment. Should it be reused elsewhere in the organisation short to medium term? 

Leveraging cloud successfully is about developing a cloud-first architecture, principles, policies, governance and procedure. Some roles or activities we associate with physical infrastructure logically disappear. However, new teams, roles and skills take their place. We need to not only monitor our virtual infrastructure, but also the consumption costs associated with it. Can we optimise and tune implementations post delivery to reduce costs?

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Common mistakes

  • Failure to sufficiently audit connectivity between systems and their associated interdependencies
  • Thinking of cloud-first as cloud-only and missing the value of hybrid implementations
  • With low barriers to entry and ease to use, there can be an associated lack of rigour around deployments which can lead to sub optimal implementations. Often organisations learn as they go and fail to engage appropriately skilled resource
  • Poor cost control through over and under sizing or a lack of DevOps in terms of appropriately automating the management of infrastructure. This can also lead to poor performance and resulting uptake of a system or service
  • Poor understanding of cloud security can lead to vulnerabilities, data leaks or regulatory issues related to data residency
  • Failing to create an abstraction between cloud vendors and the business. Ultimately being locked in/too dependent on a specific vendor

Working with Chakray

Chakray has experience of working with numerous cloud vendors and has the expertise to help customers optimise their deployments. We have experienced DevOps practitioners within the organisation that can help organisations to automate the ongoing management of their infrastructure. We also have deep technology experience integrating between cloud platforms and technologies. We can help your organisation avoid the pitfalls associated with adopting a cloud-first approach to delivery.

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