Added value from the cloud: How to secure optimal cloud outcomes

Many companies go to the cloud to make IT resources available more easily or to place workloads more flexibly. Others want to accelerate their transformation through cloud technologies. Still others are primarily concerned with cost savings. But the cloud does not automatically make everything easier, faster and more efficient. According to a Forrester survey, implementation times, admin efforts and costs are often higher than expected and, according to Bitkom / KPMG, sometimes higher than before without a cloud. What can that be? What can be learned from previous experiences? And how can companies ensure that their cloud expectations are met in the best possible way?

Local companies are investing heavily in the data center, while workloads are increasingly running in the cloud (IDC). So the trend is towards hybrid IT, a mix of on-premises data centers and external private and public cloud services. This often results in very complex architectures that demand a lot from companies. IT teams find data and workload management and governance the hardest; security, privacy and compliance issues (Forrester) are their biggest concerns.

The cloud is a huge IT and business topic and requires structure and an orderly approach. The cloud adaptation framework from Microsoft provides reliable orientation and guides you through the necessary steps.
The cloud is a huge IT and business topic and requires structure and an orderly approach. The cloud adaptation framework from Microsoft provides reliable orientation and guides you through the necessary steps.
Photo: Fujitsu

In addition, the cloud makes it easy for departments to use them – without IT support. They register for any service, book resources, build apps and create VMs as they need them. This brings uncertain results, promotes cloud growth, threatens security and compliance, and poses cost risks. Everyone has to be clear: everything I do in the cloud costs money. If I book resources, it costs money. If I set up test instances, it costs money. And if I don’t delete them again, the costs will go on forever. It is therefore important: Who can go to the cloud and what can they do there? Determining this is part of every cloud strategy. However, companies find it difficult to develop one (Forrester). After all, they often enter completely new territory with the cloud and have nothing to orientate themselves to.

Cloud migrations – large, multi-headed beasts, according to Forrester – should not be underestimated, especially since many business and technology aspects play a role. Therefore, neither the departments nor the IT go it alone should start, but coordinate. Another sticking point is cloud readiness. Many companies have noticed during or after the completion of projects that important things are missing: strategic vision, relevant skills etc. Therefore they want to get external help in the future (Forrester). What can such help look like and what does it cover? This can be clearly demonstrated with the help of large relevant providers, such as Fujitsu and NetApp – two long-standing partners who are also closely connected to leading cloud providers, including Microsoft.

“First of all, you need a scaffolding to walk along,” explains Uwe Scheuber, Director Microsoft Business & Cloud at Fujitsu Central & Eastern Europe, and adds: “We take Microsoft’s cloud adaptation framework and put various things on top of it.” For example, a reference architecture that Fujitsu uses to clarify all strategically relevant points with the customer – from a business and IT perspective. The result: a strategy that can be implemented and that promises the desired added value. Whether this is there in the end depends on the implementation, which needs to be well planned.

Fujitsu's reference architecture helps to explore what makes strategic sense, where the priorities are and what the role concept should look like - depending on the goals and expectations of the customer.
Fujitsu’s reference architecture helps to explore what makes strategic sense, where the priorities are and what the role concept should look like – depending on the goals and expectations of the customer.
Photo: Fujitsu

The transformation services from Fujitsu, including tapping cloud readiness, help with this. This shows what has to be done, which processes, technologies, skills etc. are necessary and where it is still missing. It can also be clarified: What do I migrate to when and where? Which application do I move using lift-and-shift, which one do I prefer to build cloud-natively? And how do I make my cloud manageable? In all of this, customers benefit from Fujitsu’s expertise and experience, as Scheuber explains: “From the many different Azure projects that we have been able to accompany, we have developed a comprehensive blueprint with best practices. This is how we help our customers to create a solid baseline . “

With a design blueprint that shows all relevant aspects and bundles best practices, Fujitsu simplifies implementation planning. The results flow into a customer-specific manual with a detailed roadmap.
With a design blueprint that shows all relevant aspects and bundles best practices, Fujitsu simplifies implementation planning. The results flow into a customer-specific manual with a detailed roadmap.
Photo: Fujitsu

Ultimately, the customer receives a design manual with a detailed procedural plan for its implementation, which Fujitsu can also accompany on request. “If you have a strategy and roadmap, bring innovation and set up apps in such a way that no redesign is necessary, you have already achieved a lot. Then management is important.”

First of all, the same questions arise as in your own data center. Is everything going well? And: is everything running optimally? Only things in the cloud are more difficult to understand, can be influenced to a limited extent (availability etc.) and are associated with inconsistent costs. “Such an environment has to be monitored,” emphasizes Axel Frentzen, Senior Technical Partner Manager at NetApp Germany, and adds: “I have to be able to see what kind of compliance-related data is in my cloud, which can change constantly, or maybe whether my apps are running stable, and if a user’s I / O volume suddenly doubles, my system has to tell me so that I can see what’s going on, and I want to know how much I am generating and how much I might pay for something that I don’t need or don’t use anymore. ” < /p>

Data governance and compliance are among the biggest cloud challenges. With the NetApp Cloud Insights tool, companies always know how much and what compliance-relevant data they currently have in the cloud.
Data governance and compliance are among the biggest cloud challenges. With the NetApp Cloud Insights tool, companies always know how much and what compliance-relevant data they currently have in the cloud.
Photo: Fujitsu

NetApp can display all of this, create an overview and help with optimization, for example with the analytics tool NetApp Cloud Insights. It provides all the important information in flexibly configurable dashboards and offers configurable, partly AI-supported alerts for compliance-relevant new data access, anomalies, etc. In addition, companies can use it to monitor cloud and on-premises resources combined, and to perform various optimization comparisons around performance, costs, etc. .

There are a few more helpful tools in NetApp’s cloud portfolio. In addition, there are useful services relating to storage, backup and recovery or data or workload orchestration. “With us, companies can put a big green tick on the whole management topic,” says Frentzen.

So one thing is to find the best individual way to the cloud. The other is to operate the cloud as securely and profitably as possible. Here and there, partners pay off who take the complexity out of the whole subject to accelerate and improve outcomes. Ideally, they also offer their customers a stable ecosystem that, according to Forrester, companies need for sustainable cloud success. Fujitsu and NetApp bring one with them and thus create valuable synergies, also through joint solutions. For example, a smart hybrid IT management that facilitates data governance and at the same time increases agility, performance and security – including great savings potential. So companies can easily get more out of it.

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