Often the question arises as to what stage of maturity must be in the company and its IT infrastructure in order to use cloud services. The answer is simple. After all, the main goal of transition to cloud – is to increase speed access to the service with minimal management effort. With cloud, small companies can minimize the cost of purchasing the equipment, licenses, salaries of IT staff, and large and middle – make it possible to improve the reliability of the information assets and quality of interaction with customers and partners.
Stairway To Heaven
The transition to cloud services for the well-established IT infrastructure, at first glance, may involve significant financial costs and risks. However, the path to the cloud can be phased. And then there will be an opportunity to assess the effect of each stage and develop a future strategy.
If the company has a geographically distributed structure to information assets given on different territorial areas, the first step on the path to the cloud will be consolidation, minimizing the points of concentration of information resources. A good option might be to create a single data center based on the parent company or central office (ideally should think about creating a backup data center for disaster recovery). Consolidation of resources within a single center will improve the reliability of information systems, cloud providers will provide a higher level of safety and reduce maintenance costs components of the IT infrastructure at branch offices.
The next step might be to move to energy efficient technologies. Virtualization (not just dedicated server, but also jobs, applications, and disk space), in addition to direct cost savings on hardware, software and maintenance costs, allow to abstract business applications and data from the physical execution environment. At the same time it will set the stage for easy transfer of information assets (both within the IT infrastructure of enterprise and beyond) and their transfer under external management.
A physical model representation of IT enables businesses to move to a service-oriented management, that is to have the board not the individual components of IT infrastructure and business services. In this model, be crucial to standardize the quality requirements of service (SLA), on which there is a choice on provider of IT services. They can be both internal IT service and external service providers. In the presence of SLA, it can be easily transferred or shared services between providers, which allows us to create a cloud services.
Considering the way to the clouds is not the only possible variations. In any case – if passed this way until the end or the company decides to stop at any step – at every stage they can learn for themselves both about economic and qualitative benefits.
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