Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Rishi Bhargava, Liz McMillan, Sematext Blog

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Containers Expo Blog

@CloudExpo: Article

Next Generation Datacenters: From Legacy to the Cloud

Part 2 of 5 – The Strategy – Step 1 Insight

This is part 2 of the continuing article series “From Legacy to the Cloud: Next Generation Datacenters”

Restating the obvious: Business and IT have planned, designed and operated business systems in a silo-oriented manner with disconnected decisions and actions as to how the business needs to executes and systems are created.

In the first article in this series I stated that there is not silver bullet or single strategy that solves all. There is however, proven methods and successful strategies that multiple firms have employed to attack the legacy problems in their existing datacenter infrastructures and iterate their way towards next generation datacenters and IT delivery ala Cloud Computing Models.

There is a four-step strategy for attacking legacy IT will be described. These steps can be summarized as:

  • Insight – ‘day in the life’ understanding of both business and IT in terms of execution, historical decisions and actions and objective understanding of the actual situation as it exists today.
  • Alignment – creating a common language, taxonomy and system creation model to produce repeatable results.
  • Control – specific actions, tooling, process and approach to ensure the appropriate change occurs and re-occurs successfully.
  • Sustainment – mechanisms and processes instituted in a repeatable discipline to ensure consistent results and avoid falling back into the legacy traps.

Step 1 – Insight

The most imposing barrier facing Business and IT organizations today is the lack of comprehensive & holistic insight into how the Business executes across the IT Supply Chain.

An effective strategy to create a common dialogue focus is a system thinking process of “day in a life”. How does the business originate, service and fulfill the generation of revenue and servicing of customers. Dimensions of the dialogue need to incorporate the definition of the value chain of the business (read Michael Porter) and how various business processes transcend across this chain in a typically daily process. Variations such a business calendar events, client behavior demographics, demographic coverage and wall clock changes must be identified and understood. As these points of view and understanding are gathered it is essential to ensure that they are captured along with business driver linkages, key performance indicator identification and any associated perceived deficiencies. Ensure all of this is accurately documented, reviewed and signed-off by the business to help prioritize decision-making and support strategy creation.

Let's call this “Know how you make money”

Now the key is to NOT stop there. The Business and IT need to then understand and correlate the runtime execution of the business processes across the IT Supply Chain. This means how does transactions, service requests, fulfillment requests, marketing actions, content sharing, online collaboration, financial & compliance reporting actually occur across the various components and processes of the IT systems located in their datacenters.

So there is a parallel day in the life execution model of IT that Business and IT must mutually understand.

Let's call this “Know what fulfills your money making process”

Once the day in the life framework is defined and documented it becomes critical that firms start to gather objective data on usage demographics (business and users using systems), performance demographics (how user experience performs across the systems and data centers), economic demographics (which users on what systems consume what supply in what trended manner against what asset allocation/depreciation/acquisition strategy), system demographics (inventory, composition, inter-dependency, fungability) IT Standards demographics (application patterns standards, infrastructure pattern standards, deployment model standards and systems management & monitoring practices. This should be captured in a some kind of portfolio management system linking demand and supply behavioral models that have been captured through the process defined above.

Let's call this “Know your supply chain components & usage”

The next part of the day in the life of the IT side of the house is conducting a capability assessment of the people and associated processes to build the supply chain, run the supply chain and govern the supply chain. Here it is critical to profile, analyze, assess and score on a competency, maturity and alignment basis. Information gathered and scored here should include skills inventory, planning & design processes, build and operate processes, govern and optimize processes. It is critical to get this current state documented and digitized to support critical decision-making & strategy planning.

Let's call this “Know who & how you operate your supply chain”

Summary

To some of the readers, the step above is a no-brainer. Others may believe it is unnecessary or not an effective investment of time. In either case, proven strategies and successful IT organizations have a very strong discipline and understanding of current state. It is the organizations that link business value creation with demand prioritization and profiling tied to IT capabilities that will create, implement and operationalize successful transformation strategies of their business and IT operations.

In part 3, we will explore how to apply the insight captured by following part 2 of this blog. Here decision-making and execution actions are dependent on the quality and accuracy of the input information gathered in the Insight described above.

More Stories By Tony Bishop

Blueprint4IT is authored by a longtime IT and Datacenter Technologist. Author of Next Generation Datacenters in Financial Services – Driving Extreme Efficiency and Effective Cost Savings. A former technology executive for both Morgan Stanley and Wachovia Securities.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
The cloud competition for database hosts is fierce. How do you evaluate a cloud provider for your database platform? In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Chris Presley, a Solutions Architect at Pythian, gave users a checklist of considerations when choosing a provider. Chris Presley is a Solutions Architect at Pythian. He loves order – making him a premier Microsoft SQL Server expert. Not only has he programmed and administered SQL Server, but he has also shared his expertise and passion with b...
In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Claude Remillard, Principal Program Manager in Developer Division at Microsoft, contrasted how his team used config as code and immutable patterns for continuous delivery of microservices and apps to the cloud. He showed how the immutable patterns helps developers do away with most of the complexity of config as code-enabling scenarios such as rollback, zero downtime upgrades with far greater simplicity. He also demoed building immutable pipelines in the cloud ...
As data explodes in quantity, importance and from new sources, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and cloud environments grow with it. Managing data includes protecting it, indexing and classifying it for true, long-term management, compliance and E-Discovery. Commvault can ensure this with a single pane of glass solution – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enter...
"IoT is going to be a huge industry with a lot of value for end users, for industries, for consumers, for manufacturers. How can we use cloud to effectively manage IoT applications," stated Ian Khan, Innovation & Marketing Manager at Solgeniakhela, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more business becomes digital the more stakeholders are interested in this data including how it relates to business. Some of these people have never used a monitoring tool before. They have a question on their mind like “How is my application doing” but no id...
@GonzalezCarmen has been ranked the Number One Influencer and @ThingsExpo has been named the Number One Brand in the “M2M 2016: Top 100 Influencers and Brands” by Onalytica. Onalytica analyzed tweets over the last 6 months mentioning the keywords M2M OR “Machine to Machine.” They then identified the top 100 most influential brands and individuals leading the discussion on Twitter.
In IT, we sometimes coin terms for things before we know exactly what they are and how they’ll be used. The resulting terms may capture a common set of aspirations and goals – as “cloud” did broadly for on-demand, self-service, and flexible computing. But such a term can also lump together diverse and even competing practices, technologies, and priorities to the point where important distinctions are glossed over and lost.
Predictive analytics tools monitor, report, and troubleshoot in order to make proactive decisions about the health, performance, and utilization of storage. Most enterprises combine cloud and on-premise storage, resulting in blended environments of physical, virtual, cloud, and other platforms, which justifies more sophisticated storage analytics. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Peter McCallum, Vice President of Datacenter Solutions at FalconStor, discussed using predictive analytics to mon...
All clouds are not equal. To succeed in a DevOps context, organizations should plan to develop/deploy apps across a choice of on-premise and public clouds simultaneously depending on the business needs. This is where the concept of the Lean Cloud comes in - resting on the idea that you often need to relocate your app modules over their life cycles for both innovation and operational efficiency in the cloud. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at19th Cloud Expo, Valentin (Val) Bercovici, CTO of Soli...
Information technology is an industry that has always experienced change, and the dramatic change sweeping across the industry today could not be truthfully described as the first time we've seen such widespread change impacting customer investments. However, the rate of the change, and the potential outcomes from today's digital transformation has the distinct potential to separate the industry into two camps: Organizations that see the change coming, embrace it, and successful leverage it; and...
Without a clear strategy for cost control and an architecture designed with cloud services in mind, costs and operational performance can quickly get out of control. To avoid multiple architectural redesigns requires extensive thought and planning. Boundary (now part of BMC) launched a new public-facing multi-tenant high resolution monitoring service on Amazon AWS two years ago, facing challenges and learning best practices in the early days of the new service. In his session at 19th Cloud Exp...
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to simplify and streamline our lives by automating routine tasks that distract us from our goals. This promise is based on the ubiquitous deployment of smart, connected devices that link everything from industrial control systems to automobiles to refrigerators. Unfortunately, comparatively few of the devices currently deployed have been developed with an eye toward security, and as the DDoS attacks of late October 2016 have demonstrated, this oversight can ...
Extracting business value from Internet of Things (IoT) data doesn’t happen overnight. There are several requirements that must be satisfied, including IoT device enablement, data analysis, real-time detection of complex events and automated orchestration of actions. Unfortunately, too many companies fall short in achieving their business goals by implementing incomplete solutions or not focusing on tangible use cases. In his general session at @ThingsExpo, Dave McCarthy, Director of Products...
Regulatory requirements exist to promote the controlled sharing of information, while protecting the privacy and/or security of the information. Regulations for each type of information have their own set of rules, policies, and guidelines. Cloud Service Providers (CSP) are faced with increasing demand for services at decreasing prices. Demonstrating and maintaining compliance with regulations is a nontrivial task and doing so against numerous sets of regulatory requirements can be daunting task...
Fact: storage performance problems have only gotten more complicated, as applications not only have become largely virtualized, but also have moved to cloud-based infrastructures. Storage performance in virtualized environments isn’t just about IOPS anymore. Instead, you need to guarantee performance for individual VMs, helping applications maintain performance as the number of VMs continues to go up in real time. In his session at Cloud Expo, Dhiraj Sehgal, Product and Marketing at Tintri, sha...
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to impr...
Join Impiger for their featured webinar: ‘Cloud Computing: A Roadmap to Modern Software Delivery’ on November 10, 2016, at 12:00 pm CST. Very few companies have not experienced some impact to their IT delivery due to the evolution of cloud computing. This webinar is not about deciding whether you should entertain moving some or all of your IT to the cloud, but rather, a detailed look under the hood to help IT professionals understand how cloud adoption has evolved and what trends will impact th...
More and more brands have jumped on the IoT bandwagon. We have an excess of wearables – activity trackers, smartwatches, smart glasses and sneakers, and more that track seemingly endless datapoints. However, most consumers have no idea what “IoT” means. Creating more wearables that track data shouldn't be the aim of brands; delivering meaningful, tangible relevance to their users should be. We're in a period in which the IoT pendulum is still swinging. Initially, it swung toward "smart for smar...
20th Cloud Expo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy.
Businesses and business units of all sizes can benefit from cloud computing, but many don't want the cost, performance and security concerns of public cloud nor the complexity of building their own private clouds. Today, some cloud vendors are using artificial intelligence (AI) to simplify cloud deployment and management. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Ajay Gulati, Co-founder and CEO of ZeroStack, will discuss how AI can simplify cloud operations. He will cover the following topics: why clou...