In order to have business continuity, organizations rely heavily on their IT environment and business-critical applications. Digital platforms are, for both revenue and staff retention, at the heart of the organization. Developments in the cloud offer CIO’s the opportunity to create lasting added value for the organization, but there are some challenges; take advantage of the opportunities, whilst ensuring a robust infrastructure.
Baker is also a software company
The importance of IT became extremely clear during the worldwide pandemic. Organizations that were previously known as 'physical', such as the town hall and the clothing shop, opted en masse for the (partially) online platform as their primary channel. Infrastructure scalability and stable performance proved essential for business continuity. After all, online consumers want to experience the same quality of service anywhere, anytime. Employees have also become accustomed to being able to open their laptops and continue working anywhere, anytime.
Initially, the public cloud seemed to be the answer to all performance questions. The public cloud is scalable, available everywhere and – due to easy access to the latest SaaS solutions - a breeding ground for innovation. Applications and entire infrastructures were rapidly transferred to the cloud. With public cloud management, an organization can accelerate time-to-market, automatically scale up and down based on (peak) load, and guarantee the quality of its service to its end users at all times.
Capacity in the organization
Many organizations strive for more flexibility and modernization, to remain competitive in the market. In practice, it turns out that a 100% public cloud is not (yet) the best solution for every situation. This is because a public cloud environment requires a different approach than the traditional IT environment. One has to deal with a very dynamic environment, but this also creates complexity. To reap the promised benefits of the cloud, expertise and knowledge of one's applications and business chains are crucial.
Not every organization has enough information right away to make informed choices during a cloud transformation. How does the environment remain secure and compliant? Which processes should always be running in the background? Which applications are not (or infrequently) used? Due to insufficient grip, the 'everything in the cloud' approach can prove costly.
Moreover, a lack of the right tools often makes it difficult to determine where an incident originated, from a technical perspective. As a result, technology partners fail to agree amongst themselves in which domain responsibility lies. Meanwhile, IT staff spend all their time putting out fires and do not have enough capacity or knowledge to deliver constructive solutions.
The hybrid cloud offers a good solution. Business-critical and front-facing applications are continuously available in the public part, and sensitive data remains on-premises on the servers. DevOps, meanwhile, can collect data on how components should be distributed across the infrastructure and what data is continuously available. In this way, IT can bring about digital transformation in the organization in a responsible and controlled manner.
Vision of the future, sights on today
Important in any digital transformation is the vision of the future. Here, too, the CIO plays a crucial role. The end-user experience is central from the business perspective, and IT must also direct this through performance management. With performance monitoring, many organizations still think mainly of technical monitoring, which gives managers insight into the continuity of an application.
Chain monitoring (or end-to-end monitoring) is the magic word here, providing insight into the objective experience of the end user - and thus the quality of delivered IT services. Integrating monitoring into the core of the infrastructure provides valuable insights about end users and helps with incident detection and prevention. It also enables managers to make data-driven decisions and enables DevOps teams to understand the functioning of the existing IT infrastructure down to code level. This helps in the long run to create an organization that can step by step take full advantage of all the functionalities and benefits that hybrid cloud management delivers.