New cloud era is exciting and full of possibilities, says Reid of SureSkills

Kevin Reid, SureSkills (Image: SureSkills)

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8 December 2015 | 0

The world of IT is a fluid place where change and evolution are never far away and that is increasingly the case today due to the emergence and rapid growth of new technologies such as cloud computing and the many varieties of mobile and anywhere-any time access to powerful applications. The new capabilities on offer are challenging the supremacy of traditional on-premises solutions and have proven themselves to be viable alternatives. These revolutionary new methods of consuming IT have caused a real shift in how organisations think about their own environments, with business focus and budgets now shifting to this ‘new way’ of consuming technology.

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It is important to understand the critical differences that the broad areas of IaaS, PaaS and SaaS deliver and how a business can consume and gain value from them. While the cloud is an extremely attractive prospect in both theory and in practice, not every application or solution can be moved there. However, with a little imagination and investment many can be re-engineered to deliver the agility, scalability and flexibility that cloud technology can uniquely deliver. Similarly, there are an increasing number of cloud alternatives to current solutions that can be adopted onto a road map for development.

It must be acknowledged that cloud technology is not a panacea for all IT issues. For a start, there are many legacy systems that cannot be migrated or re-housed in a cloud context. In fact, fixed workload environments can often be better provisioned on-premises where scale, capacity and performance is directly controllable by the organisation.

“While the cloud is an extremely attractive prospect in both theory and in practice, not every application or solution can be moved there. However, with a little imagination and investment many can be re-engineered to deliver the agility, scalability and flexibility that cloud technology can uniquely deliver”

While new and exciting technology will mostly help in the long run, large scale change can also have unforeseen implications in areas like education and support for the end users if it is not managed correctly. Of course a business must operate as usual in the short term because it is not possible just to stop all internal operations and focus solely on migration to the cloud.

The solution to the cloud question is often the hybrid model which can deliver exceptional value to organisations with existing infrastructure. The internal infrastructure will have been a considerable investment and must deliver a return but by creating a bridge to an appropriate cloud environment, the best of both worlds can be combined to realise business value, deliver more agility and enable scaling or burst capacity.

Ongoing investment in internal IT will not disappear in the near future. It will probably reduce slightly for most organisations, with a focus mainly on those applications that have a fixed profile, that are subject to regulatory or compliance controls, or have specialist support issues. But the important point is that cloud technology has matured and diversified and there is no longer any doubt that well-managed adoption will deliver the desired scalability, agility and flexibility. There are other business benefits in the economic sense but also in solutions that deliver an enhanced experience for users and organisations. That is why cloud is continuing to gain market share and why an ecosystem of multiple providers and solutions is thriving.

Re-designing your IT infrastructure to leverage this model is a challenge but it is thoroughly achievable. SureSkills has a commitment to continue delivering tailored hybrid models to our clients. Our proven expertise in this regard is demonstrated by our recent award as Dell Country Partner of the Year 2015 and our ongoing status as an Ireland’s only Amazon Web Services education and consulting partner.

 

Kevin Reid is chief technical officer of SureSkills

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