Business across the universe is transforming. New business ideas are evolving. IT becomes a major influencer in this transformation. Today’s IT is all about being digital. The new IT, with its digital capabilities translate ideas to reality and help the business transformation.
Digital technologies like artificial intelligence, machine learning, blockchain, IoT and data analytics increases the demand for IT resources at click of a button. The SaaSification of applications drives the digital technologies in to small and medium enterprises.
These digital technologies require more and more processing power on very high volatility, which becomes harder to sustain for any business, with its own data centers. Capex and ability to scale becomes challenge to any enterprise.
Some of the top advanced analytics use cases for enterprises:
The world of Cloud Computing
Now with the cloud, we have virtually “infinite” access to IT resources, starting from Compute to applications in the form of As a Service. You pay as you go based on your consumption.
For many years, data security and compliance have been a hesitation dilemma for enterprises to adopt cloud. And with the implementation of compliance and regulations, enterprises are adopting cloud 1st strategy which has progressed further to Hybrid cloud or multi cloud strategy.
Benefits of Cloud Computing
The first outcome when starting a new application running on the cloud is moving from CapEx to OpEx. This means that you don’t require to make the substantial initial investment in buying hardware and building your data centre, but sign up as a service from the cloud provider and pay for only what you consume.
Cloud helps enterprises to innovate with speed. To give an example, you want to deploy an AI tool in a lab to experiment and evaluate. Cloud gives you the flexibility to deploy that service on demand without the initial investment. You can use and discontinue once your experiment or evaluation is over. Thus, cloud becomes an enabler of innovation.
When your business grows, if you have to increase your consumption, cloud gives you scalability, allowing you to scale vertically and horizontally as require.
Every business has seasonal demands which causes a peak. When you are on cloud, you don’t need to reserve lot of IT resources idle awaiting for that peak. The elasticity ability of the cloud allows you to dynamically and automatically identify the need for more resources and provision it on demand. Then, when the load comes back to normal, the additional computing resources are released, reducing the operation cost.
Another aspect of cloud is that it helps you to focus where it matters. You don’t need to worry about the hardware maintenance, updates, and patches of host systems, because it is handled by the cloud provider, making sure you have the current and up to date infrastructure. Cloud services are reliable, offering backup and replication solutions, with SLAs and redundancy.
Finally, cloud gives you the global foot print. To have an idea of the size of the top 3 cloud providers, Microsoft Azure has 56 regions, with a minimum of 3 availability zones per region. Amazon AWS has 22 regions with 69 availability zones. Google Cloud, 21 regions with 64 availability zones. And they are still growing
Cloud as a Startup Enabler
Cloud gives the global availability. It helps to avoid the high upfront cost of creating own IT set up. Cloud gives the freedom to focus on where it matters and gives access to all the digital technologies a business need. Cloud enables innovation. Hence the cloud is an enabler for not only to the start-ups but also to small and medium businesses in their journey to translate their ideas to reality.
Adapting to the Cloud – where to start
While cloud becomes an enabler, it is also critical that there is a structured adoption methodology in place which will fuel innovation, control cost and give better management controls.
When deciding to move to the cloud, it is essential to understand your applications and analyse case by case, understanding which model is suitable for every scenario.
Enterprises should acquire skills and in-depth technical knowledge for the configuration of access, resources, networking, and policies. A good governance model for both consumption and operation are fundamental to manage the operations and control the cost.
New applications also must be designed with cloud concepts in mind for example, using containers and microservices architecture, retry patterns, and loose coupling. Delivery models should be aligned to modern development frameworks such as agile and devops.