Welcome!

Virtualization Authors: Plutora Blog, Elizabeth White, Vormetric Blog, Liz McMillan, Carmen Gonzalez

Related Topics: Cloud Expo, SOA & WOA, Virtualization

Cloud Expo: Article

Cloud Implementation: Ensuring Success

Like any other solution implementation, service providers need to focus on four key areas

Deploying Cloud infrastructure is not a typical technology project. Success of a Cloud implementation depends on governance, policies, constraints and business relationship management.  This article focuses on some basic important areas that cannot be ignored while implementing a Public Cloud solution. To keep it simple, let us focus on green-field implementation of a public cloud infrastructure.

Like any other solution implementation, service providers need to focus on four key areas: Strategy, Business processes, Technology and people skills. Quite often, cloud implementations focus on infrastructure (and forget processes) and then see if the deployment meets their overall strategy or not. Such an approach results in unsuccessful implementations. Investing in business management, people and processes before the technology will ensure success with your cloud computing. Even in a green-field implementation, the right approach is to build and agree on the strategy first, ensure that business processes are aligned to meet the strategy; then focus on technology and people skills aligned to overall strategy. Such an approach ensures that the Cloud implementation meets the overall strategy and results in success. HP has a proven methodology, called Solution Consulting Services (SCS), to help Service Providers get better alignment of strategy, processes and technology while taking such a customer-centric journey. While taking any architectural decisions or at any change in technology, it is beneficial to evaluate impact on the overall strategy and service delivery to customers. For this reason, it is prudent to involve the marketing team during the implementation.

Let us now take a look at these areas and summarize key important points while planning deployment of Public Cloud service.

Strategy:

  • Leading the organization: Cloud is a new way of delivering traditional services and to take the organization through this change, leadership and sponsorship of senior management is critical.
    • Understand the market, clearly define the desired end state, build a pragmatic roadmap to achieve the goal and rally the organization towards the future goal; communicate the vision and create buy-in throughout the organization; agree on approach to the market
    • Build a living strategy document and a road map to achieve desired measurable business outcomes
  • Leverage your strengths and strategic assets: Leverage networking, a key strategic asset, which can differentiate CSPs from other services from IT companies by demonstrating end-to-end value and quality of service. The strategy should be to offer bundled services that include typical IT centric services along with communication as a service.
  • Understand acquisition and operational costs: Have clear understanding on how to measure agility, cost and quality of service; understand and agree on any compromises in these areas
  • Based on market study, clearly define required functionality, scalability etc. to be competitive; Leverage best-practices and lessons already learnt by others
  • Avoid vendor lock-in: Standards are evolving for Cloud inter-operability. It is best to go for open architecture based on industry standard products and avoid vendor lock-in

Process

  • Define end-to-end Service Delivery: Technology is the easiest component of a cloud deployment. According to a Gartner report, technology is less difficult than the changes required in processes, funding models, organization culture and politics, and service definition and delivery.
  • Define Business Policies: Public Cloud implementation requires you to think through and decide on policies, governance and allocation models; the software itself cannot do all this for you. There are software products available in the market to implement business policies. But a lot of attention must be given to define those business policies, charging options, SLAs etc.
  • Changing business relationships: Cloud computing brings in automation in service delivery as well as in service consumption; both service providers and consumers will have to change their existing processes to accommodate this. Understand the impact of Cloud computing on operational processes and manage the changing relationship between you and your customers.

Technology:

The architectural requirements of cloud computing include following key areas:

  • Standardization:
    • Standardize and automate as much as possible from the start to keep the operational costs low
    • Customers typically expect the same level of service quality, flexibility and control as in the traditional dedicated physical environment.

- The cloud environment is far more complex and dynamic than the traditional dedicated physical environment. There are many more servers to manage because of the ability to rapidly create virtual servers. Cloud services are continually being created, moved among physical resources, and retired by customers.

o  Select products and solutions that give you flexibility, control and automation features needed for today and tomorrow; avoid customized automation

  • Automation:
    • The automation and orchestration layer turns a virtual environment into a cloud environment. A special focus is needed on automation and efficient use of resources.
    • Rapid provisioning; speed of delivery
    • Ability to create, launch and terminate cloud instances as needed
    • Resource optimization: Manage service levels across applications and a virtual infrastructure, and allocate resources based on business needs.
    • Integrated Service Management: Monitor and manage services and not just infrastructure components.
  • Service catalogs:
    • Self-service portal to present service catalogs

- Transition from an infrastructure-oriented approach to a service-oriented approach for service delivery and management is needed. This includes providing a catalog of standardized IT services and supporting self-service and automated provisioning of standardized services. In addition, it's important to integrate IT processes and tools and be able to support multiple service sourcing options.

o    The cloud environment may include services from a variety of external providers, greatly increasing the number of vendors for SP to manage. This also increases risk of software license and compliance violations.

  • Identity and subscriber management:
    • Privacy and Compliance requirements

- Compliance with security-related issues is very important in the cloud. IT must ensure that information, data ownership, and billing/accounting information are secure. In addition, it is also critical to protect the physical storage of information from privacy and security point of views.

  • Charging/Billing: Service charging, billing and integration with CRM: Even in a green-field implementation, we have to have clear understanding, based on market analysis, on how each service will be charged and how CSRs will be able to support customers. Some services are offered at fixed price whereas others are billed based on usage. Each market is different and the architecture should be able to give flexibility to marketing units.
  • Industry Standards: Consider standards in areas such as public cloud interoperability, chargeback measurements, service-level definitions, etc. We are in the early days of cloud computing, and there will be new standards defined as cloud computing matures. For this reason, investing in technologies based on open and industry standards is of paramount importance.

People

  • As Cloud computing is a new way to deliver traditional services, organizations and people skills must shift to reflect the changes required in becoming a service provider. New skill sets are required in areas like modeling service architectures, building and testing automation, and scripting interfaces. With increase in level of automation and agility, the emphasis shifts to monitoring utilization, understanding trends etc. for more proactive steps. Training sales teams to sell Public Cloud computing as well as other bundled services cannot be emphasized more.

With the right approach, one can align implementation to meet the long term strategy of the organization. It is worth spending a bit more time planning deployment and understanding its impact on the strategy and end-users.

More Stories By Kapil Raval

Kapil Raval is an experienced technology solutions consultant with nearly 20 years of experience in the telecom industry. He thinks ‘the business’ and focuses on linking business challenges to technology solutions. He currently works for HP and drives strategic solutions in the telecom vertical.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Code Halos - aka "digital fingerprints" - are the key organizing principle to understand a) how dumb things become smart and b) how to monetize this dynamic. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Robert Brown, AVP, Center for the Future of Work at Cognizant Technology Solutions, outlined research, analysis and recommendations from his recently published book on this phenomena on the way leading edge organizations like GE and Disney are unlocking the Internet of Things opportunity and what steps your organization should be taking to position itself for the next platform of digital competition.
The Industrial Internet revolution is now underway, enabled by connected machines and billions of devices that communicate and collaborate. The massive amounts of Big Data requiring real-time analysis is flooding legacy IT systems and giving way to cloud environments that can handle the unpredictable workloads. Yet many barriers remain until we can fully realize the opportunities and benefits from the convergence of machines and devices with Big Data and the cloud, including interoperability, data security and privacy.
In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect at GE, and Ibrahim Gokcen, who leads GE's advanced IoT analytics, focused on the Internet of Things / Industrial Internet and how to make it operational for business end-users. Learn about the challenges posed by machine and sensor data and how to marry it with enterprise data. They also discussed the tips and tricks to provide the Industrial Internet as an end-user consumable service using Big Data Analytics and Industrial Cloud.
SYS-CON Media announced that Splunk, a provider of the leading software platform for real-time Operational Intelligence, has launched an ad campaign on Big Data Journal. Splunk software and cloud services enable organizations to search, monitor, analyze and visualize machine-generated big data coming from websites, applications, servers, networks, sensors and mobile devices. The ads focus on delivering ROI - how improved uptime delivered $6M in annual ROI, improving customer operations by mining large volumes of unstructured data, and how data tracking delivers uptime when it matters most.
Today’s enterprise is being driven by disruptive competitive and human capital requirements to provide enterprise application access through not only desktops, but also mobile devices. To retrofit existing programs across all these devices using traditional programming methods is very costly and time consuming – often prohibitively so. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO, President, and Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., discussed how you can create applications that run on all mobile devices as well as laptops and desktops using a visual drag-and-drop application – and eForms-buildi...
Things are being built upon cloud foundations to transform organizations. This CEO Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo, moderated by Roger Strukhoff, Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo conference chair, addressed the big issues involving these technologies and, more important, the results they will achieve. Rodney Rogers, chairman and CEO of Virtustream; Brendan O'Brien, co-founder of Aria Systems, Bart Copeland, president and CEO of ActiveState Software; Jim Cowie, chief scientist at Dyn; Dave Wagstaff, VP and chief architect at BSQUARE Corporation; Seth Proctor, CTO of NuoDB, Inc.; and Andris Gailitis, C...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CodeFutures, a leading supplier of database performance tools, has been named a “Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. CodeFutures is an independent software vendor focused on providing tools that deliver database performance tools that increase productivity during database development and increase database performance and scalability during production.
SYS-CON Events announced today that ActiveState, the leading independent Cloud Foundry and Docker-based PaaS provider, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's DevOps Summit New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. ActiveState believes that enterprises gain a competitive advantage when they are able to quickly create, deploy and efficiently manage software solutions that immediately create business value, but they face many challenges that prevent them from doing so. The Company is uniquely positioned to help address these challenges thro...
IoT is still a vague buzzword for many people. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, discussed the business value of IoT that goes far beyond the general public's perception that IoT is all about wearables and home consumer services. He also discussed how IoT is perceived by investors and how venture capitalist access this space. Other topics discussed were barriers to success, what is new, what is old, and what the future may hold. Mike Kavis is Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Pa...
Dale Kim is the Director of Industry Solutions at MapR. His background includes a variety of technical and management roles at information technology companies. While his experience includes work with relational databases, much of his career pertains to non-relational data in the areas of search, content management, and NoSQL, and includes senior roles in technical marketing, sales engineering, and support engineering. Dale holds an MBA from Santa Clara University, and a BA in Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley.
SYS-CON Media announced that Cisco, a worldwide leader in IT that helps companies seize the opportunities of tomorrow, has launched a new ad campaign in Cloud Computing Journal. The ad campaign, a webcast titled 'Is Your Data Center Ready for the Application Economy?', focuses on the latest data center networking technologies, including SDN or ACI, and how customers are using SDN and ACI in their organizations to achieve business agility. The Cisco webcast is available on-demand.
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to evolve the way the world does business; however, understanding how to apply it to your company can be a mystery. Most people struggle with understanding the potential business uses or tend to get caught up in the technology, resulting in solutions that fail to meet even minimum business goals. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO / President / Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., showed what is needed to leverage the IoT to transform your business. He discussed opportunities and challenges ahead for the IoT from a market and technical point of vie...
"People are a lot more knowledgeable about APIs now. There are two types of people who work with APIs - IT people who want to use APIs for something internal and the product managers who want to do something outside APIs for people to connect to them," explained Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at SOA Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Performance is the intersection of power, agility, control, and choice. If you value performance, and more specifically consistent performance, you need to look beyond simple virtualized compute. Many factors need to be considered to create a truly performant environment. In his General Session at 15th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Sr. Software Architect at SoftLayer, discussed how to take advantage of a multitude of compute options and platform features to make cloud the cornerstone of your online presence.
In this Women in Technology Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo, moderated by Anne Plese, Senior Consultant, Cloud Product Marketing at Verizon Enterprise, Esmeralda Swartz, CMO at MetraTech; Evelyn de Souza, Data Privacy and Compliance Strategy Leader at Cisco Systems; Seema Jethani, Director of Product Management at Basho Technologies; Victoria Livschitz, CEO of Qubell Inc.; Anne Hungate, Senior Director of Software Quality at DIRECTV, discussed what path they took to find their spot within the technology industry and how do they see opportunities for other women in their area of expertise.
Almost everyone sees the potential of Internet of Things but how can businesses truly unlock that potential. The key will be in the ability to discover business insight in the midst of an ocean of Big Data generated from billions of embedded devices via Systems of Discover. Businesses will also need to ensure that they can sustain that insight by leveraging the cloud for global reach, scale and elasticity.
“The age of the Internet of Things is upon us,” stated Thomas Svensson, senior vice-president and general manager EMEA, ThingWorx, “and working with forward-thinking companies, such as Elisa, enables us to deploy our leading technology so that customers can profit from complete, end-to-end solutions.” ThingWorx, a PTC® (Nasdaq: PTC) business and Internet of Things (IoT) platform provider, announced on Monday that Elisa, Finnish provider of mobile and fixed broadband subscriptions, will deploy ThingWorx® platform technology to enable a new Elisa IoT service in Finland and Estonia.
Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs) are increasing at an unprecedented rate. The threat landscape of today is drastically different than just a few years ago. Attacks are much more organized and sophisticated. They are harder to detect and even harder to anticipate. In the foreseeable future it's going to get a whole lot harder. Everything you know today will change. Keeping up with this changing landscape is already a daunting task. Your organization needs to use the latest tools, methods and expertise to guard against those threats. But will that be enough? In the foreseeable future attacks w...
As enterprises move to all-IP networks and cloud-based applications, communications service providers (CSPs) – facing increased competition from over-the-top providers delivering content via the Internet and independently of CSPs – must be able to offer seamless cloud-based communication and collaboration solutions that can scale for small, midsize, and large enterprises, as well as public sector organizations, in order to keep and grow market share. The latest version of Oracle Communications Unified Communications Suite gives CSPs the capability to do just that. In addition, its integration ...
From telemedicine to smart cars, digital homes and industrial monitoring, the explosive growth of IoT has created exciting new business opportunities for real time calls and messaging. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ivelin Ivanov, CEO and Co-Founder of Telestax, shared some of the new revenue sources that IoT created for Restcomm – the open source telephony platform from Telestax. Ivelin Ivanov is a technology entrepreneur who founded Mobicents, an Open Source VoIP Platform, to help create, deploy, and manage applications integrating voice, video and data. He is the co-founder of TeleStax, a...