|By Bijush Ramachandran||
|November 13, 2012 04:00 AM EST||
IT infrastructure today is in a state of continuous evolution. Recently we have witnessed several technology breakthroughs in the form of cloud computing, mobility, social networking, etc.
Cloud has become a reality in the enterprise world. Most organizations have tested cloud in the form of virtual private clouds or public clouds. With some of the security concerns around the cloud platform receding, federated identity becoming common and the economic benefits of the cloud adoption becoming clear, the adoption level and maturity of cloud-based services is on the rise.
Gartner predicts that by 2105, around 57 % of IT services will be delivered via cloud, which is a clear indication that organizations are moving to the IaaS-, SaaS- and PaaS-based cloud models
Infrastructure federation (Hybrid cloud IaaS) and application federation (third-party SaaS) are gaining prominence. Private cloud adoption by the enterprise is also steadily on the rise. Gartner's "Hype cycle of Cloud computing "of 2011 predicts that in the next five years private cloud adoption would be reaching its peak .Private cloud is clearly surging ahead as the path to cloud. Big Data and cloud-enabled BPM platforms are the other areas that are expected to grow in a big way.
Businesses today requires their IT to be flexible and more commoditized, pushing them toward cloud adoption. However, the cloud on-demand models (Iaas, PaaS, and SaaS) will not get due adoption if not made transparent with the consumers of these services. There needs to be a convergence of cost structures, service levels and business needs for improved cloud adoption by the enterprises.
As organizations embark on their cloud adoption journey, some of the key focus areas include:
- Defining their cloud adoption strategy
- Identifying the right set of workloads to be migrated on to cloud
- Cloud architecture design and build ( for private clouds)
- Security and regulatory requirements on cloud
- Cloud governance and sustenance
One other key challenge is to identify the right cloud service provider (when leveraging a public cloud model). There are several options available to choose from the cloud market. Some of the considerations for choosing a cloud service provider could be based on the following:
- For a given application or a given workload or infrastructure configuration which is the right cloud service provider
- SLA offered by the provider
- Geographic locations from where the services are offered
- Standards/compliance requirements that the service provide adheres to
- Cloud security mechanisms offered
- Pricing models
- Transparency in metering & Billing
For enterprises that are just starting on their cloud journey, it may be challenging to address all of the focus areas highlighted earlier. One of the options could be to engage with system integrators who can manage the complete cloud ecosystem for them across multiple providers and also act as the single point of accountability for all their cloud needs by taking ownership for their complete cloud life cycle management.
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