Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Carmen Gonzalez, Yeshim Deniz

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Microservices Expo, Containers Expo Blog

@CloudExpo: Blog Feed Post

CIOs Should Know that IT Is Infrastructure as a Service

Because IT is a support function – it was infrastructure as a service long before cloud computing came along

image InformationWeek has been out and about talking up their most recent CIO survey and keeps calling attention to the fact that one in three CIOs see creating a new business or business model as a driver in 2011. This is not a new phenomenon, but one in three is more CIOs than I would have intuitively thought, so I started to think about it.

There has always been a drive, at least in every company I’ve worked for, that if you want to grow your ivory tower you need to generate revenue. Because IT is a support function – it was infrastructure as a service long before cloud computing came along, if you look at it in the right light – this mentality didn’t generally drive CIOs. Serving the business in the best manner possible was huge on CIO’s list of things to do, but generating revenue just didn’t drive them. Which leads to the question “why now?”

The answer to that question is likely manifold. First, there are those businesses where IT is the business. An online trading house, for example, doesn’t exist without IT. The same is true of Amazon, eBay, and a host of other companies. For those companies, being in IT is 100% being on the business side of the house. Your innovations and modifications are to the lifeblood of the company. Then there’s the advent of cloud, which has people buzzing (right or wrong) about business value and IT as a Service. That has to be playing in these CIO’s minds. And finally, it seems that every year the mantra “do more with less” has been echoing about the halls of IT, and CIOs might just be reaching out for ways to do more and add staff.

But in the end, no matter whether you’re in insurance, utilities, telecom, manufacturing, whatever, IT does add value to the business, and becoming the business is not required to show that fact. Everywhere I have had the opportunity to work, either as a consultant or full-time employee, the company could not function at the level it does without IT. We all know that, the business knows that, the thing is that IT is horrible about communicating that fact. And always has been.

So if you’re in a business whose product is not software, focus on enabling the business, not in creating new business. Lori and I were just chatting this survey up, and she brought up one of the cloud-o-nomics points that makes normal IT folks shudder. No, you’re not generally going to lease out extra capacity to random people. Unless you are in the cloud business, selling cloud services is a distraction from your purpose – to support the business.

You’ve got virtualization to worry about, many of you are starting to look at virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), cloud is on your radar, security concerns continue to leave a dark cloud over IT (yeah I used that allegory), and that’s before you even touch the specific needs of your market and organization. Do not invent work. I’m not saying ignore a good idea – much of the great software out there was created by people who had an internal need and once they solved it they shared it with the world – but don’t say “create new lines of business” as a directive unless your organization is moving that direction.

image The point is that IT grew to the behemoth that it is because the business needed support. That investment is reaping rewards, but unless it was specifically made with the aim of getting into new businesses or business models, there is a risk associated with bleeding off some of those resources on speculative productization efforts. Make sure you’re doing what you’re there for, and make certain the business knows it. IT runs large swaths of the business in a fashion so highly automated that without it, the business would implode. I’m not over-exaggerating here, stop and think what order volume would be with no PCs. Now talk with the business about that. Let them know how much growth is directly the result of IT. I remember an insurance company I worked at doing disaster planning – if HQ was wiped out, likely there would be people needing the services of their insurer – and the plan was to shift to doing everything by hand. Eventually the conclusion was reached that it was not feasible to do that, and a secondary, geographically remote, datacenter was built. That was a golden opportunity to point out that the business wouldn’t be what it was without IT, but from what I could tell, no one was sending that message other than myself, and I was an IT architect, so I was sending that message mostly to IT in the hopes that managers would pick up on it.

So if you’re not an IT business, stay focused on supporting those on the business side. Make every decision based upon “does this help the business”, and make it clear that’s why you’re making it. It’s not as cool as creating new products, but if you want to create new products in IT, then go to work for a business in the IT space. They’re a lot of fun, in my experience, and then your energy will be directed in the right way. But for those in non-IT businesses, show how your initiatives will improve things for the business, and if you can’t, then consider very carefully whether that item should be an IT initiative.

Again, the problem is nothing new, since the first network cable was run, something as simple as “we have to upgrade this network segment or bad things will happen in the future” has been a hard sell. Those who will be most successful at IT management will not be those looking to do businesses job for them, but those who can communicate why IT initiatives will help the business grow.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Don MacVittie

Don MacVittie is founder of Ingrained Technology, A technical advocacy and software development consultancy. He has experience in application development, architecture, infrastructure, technical writing,DevOps, and IT management. MacVittie holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Northern Michigan University, and an M.S. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University.

@CloudExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tintri, Inc, a leading provider of enterprise cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Tintri offers an enterprise cloud platform built with public cloud-like web services and RESTful APIs. Organizations use Tintri all-flash storage with scale-out and automation as a foundation for their own clouds – to build agile development environments...
SYS-CON Events announced today that DivvyCloud will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. DivvyCloud software enables organizations to achieve their cloud computing goals by simplifying and automating security, compliance and cost optimization of public and private cloud infrastructure. Using DivvyCloud, customers can leverage programmatic Bots to identify and remediate common cloud problems in rea...
In his opening keynote at 20th Cloud Expo, Michael Maximilien, Research Scientist, Architect, and Engineer at IBM, will motivate why realizing the full potential of the cloud and social data requires artificial intelligence. By mixing Cloud Foundry and the rich set of Watson services, IBM's Bluemix is the best cloud operating system for enterprises today, providing rapid development and deployment of applications that can take advantage of the rich catalog of Watson services to help drive insigh...
While some vendors scramble to create and sell you a fancy solution for monitoring your spanking new Amazon Lambdas, hear how you can do it on the cheap using just built-in Java APIs yourself. By exploiting a little-known fact that Lambdas aren’t exactly single threaded, you can effectively identify hot spots in your serverless code. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, David Martin, Principal Product Owner at CA Technologies, will give a live demonstration and code walkthrough, showing how to ov...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outscale, a global pure play Infrastructure as a Service provider and strategic partner of Dassault Systèmes, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 2010, Outscale simplifies infrastructure complexities and boosts the business agility of its customers. Outscale delivers a secure, reliable and industrial strength solution for its customers, which in...
The 21st International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding busin...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudistics, an on-premises cloud computing company, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloudistics delivers a complete public cloud experience with composable on-premises infrastructures to medium and large enterprises. Its software-defined technology natively converges network, storage, compute, virtualization, and management into a ...
Every successful software product evolves from an idea to an enterprise system. Notably, the same way is passed by the product owner's company. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Oleg Lola, CEO of MobiDev, will provide a generalized overview of the evolution of a software product, the product owner, the needs that arise at various stages of this process, and the value brought by a software development partner to the product owner as a response to these needs.
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists will examine how DevOps helps to meet th...
Most technology leaders, contemporary and from the hardware era, are reshaping their businesses to do software in the hope of capturing value in IoT. Although IoT is relatively new in the market, it has already gone through many promotional terms such as IoE, IoX, SDX, Edge/Fog, Mist Compute, etc. Ultimately, irrespective of the name, it is about deriving value from independent software assets participating in an ecosystem as one comprehensive solution.
SYS-CON Events announced today that EARP will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "We are a software house, so we perfectly understand challenges that other software houses face in their projects. We can augment a team, that will work with the same standards and processes as our partners' internal teams. Our teams will deliver the same quality within the required time and budget just as our partn...
As DevOps methodologies expand their reach across the enterprise, organizations face the daunting challenge of adapting related cloud strategies to ensure optimal alignment, from managing complexity to ensuring proper governance. How can culture, automation, legacy apps and even budget be reexamined to enable this ongoing shift within the modern software factory?
SYS-CON Events announced today that delaPlex will exhibit at SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. delaPlex pioneered Software Development as a Service (SDaaS), which provides scalable resources to build, test, and deploy software. It’s a fast and more reliable way to develop a new product or expand your in-house team.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tappest will exhibit MooseFS at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MooseFS is a breakthrough concept in the storage industry. It allows you to secure stored data with either duplication or erasure coding using any server. The newest – 4.0 version of the software enables users to maintain the redundancy level with even 50% less hard drive space required. The software func...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
SYS-CON Events announced today that A&I Solutions has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 1999, A&I Solutions is a leading information technology (IT) software and services provider focusing on best-in-class enterprise solutions. By partnering with industry leaders in technology, A&I assures customers high performance levels across all IT environments including: mai...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Systena America will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Systena Group has been in business for various software development and verification in Japan, US, ASEAN, and China by utilizing the knowledge we gained from all types of device development for various industries including smartphones (Android/iOS), wireless communication, security technology and IoT serv...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outscale will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Outscale's technology makes an automated and adaptable Cloud available to businesses, supporting them in the most complex IT projects while controlling their operational aspects. You boost your IT infrastructure's reactivity, with request responses that only take a few seconds.
DevOps at Cloud Expo – being held October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's largest enterprises – and delivering real r...