Nearly every cloud provider and data center hardware/software vendor these days promises lower IT management overhead, freeing up IT staff to work on more important projects. Are these providers really making IT simpler and more efficient?
Let’s get specific by taking a closer look at a single use case - VMware-based Expedient Enterprise Cloud (EEC). How does EEC help IT staff deliver simpler, more efficient IT to their organizations?
Simpler cloud migrations – Because EEC is VMware-based, Expedient can use multiple migration tools that ease the transition from the former computing environment to the cloud. Some clients choose to do migrations themselves. Others leverage Expedient’s low-cost migration services to move the systems and data.
Continuum of cloud services to future-proof your IT strategy – Expedient maintains a wide range of IT infrastructure solutions to address various needs for clients from disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) to shared and dedicated instances for full production workloads. Many clients start with cloud-based DRaaS and migrate production to the cloud over time, using Expedient colocation to house any interim equipment that needs to stay in production for a period of time. Others move to a cloud-based production environment rather than another server hardware refresh.
Fully automated, multi-layer data protection – EEC offers fully managed cloud backup services that can be combined with Expedient’s industry-leading Push Button DR solution to guarantee faster system recoveries with significantly less day-to-day maintenance. DRaaS is one of the most effective ways to protect the business from ransomware attacks. Maintaining backup and DRaaS are some of the most labor-intensive maintenance tasks for the IT staff, and IT staff is usually quite happy to let someone else do it. With this extra time, the IT staff can focus on more strategic initiatives and run periodic disaster recovery tests, which further decreases the risk of data loss in an actual emergency.
Leverage existing IT skill sets without retraining– VMware-based clouds are often overlooked when companies consider a move to the cloud, mostly due to media visibility of hyperscale cloud providers like AWS and Azure. Yet VMware is a familiar, mature, and stable enterprise IT management software widely known by IT professionals. As a VMware-based software defined data center (SDDC), EEC delivers multiple VMware services via the cloud in an integrated multi-tenant, highly scalable environment that your IT staff likely already knows how to use.
More data security with less security management – EEC comes standard with disk-based encryption at rest, network micro-segmentation, and multi-factor authentication for administrators. These services are in addition to an active/passive firewall pair, logging, and multiple options to automate threat protection, unify threat management, and manage/groom logs. Many organizations who purchase similar functionality find they might be able to afford the upfront costs, but they find maintenance fees and ongoing management of the technologies to be too much for the IT staff to handle. With EEC, all the care and feeding of these security technologies is co-managed by Expedient.
Verified high performance for better customer experience – Speed still matters in most business applications. Expedient’s cloud infrastructure performance has been evaluated by third parties for many years and consistently outperformed AWS, Azure and Rackspace in an independent analysis completed by Cloud Spectator, LLC.
“Expedient provides consistent, exceptional performance and value when compared to the latest offerings from some of the largest Cloud IaaS providers.” – Cloud Spectator, LLC
Better service level agreements, higher uptime, and fewer outages – Expedient Enterprise Cloud is delivered via highly redundant data center facilities across the globe using N+2 redundant server, storage and network architecture. This is critically important for legacy applications that were architected to expect resilience in the underlying hardware. Expedient delivers a 100% service level agreement (SLA) to clients, even on telecom circuits that Expedient provisions and manages.
Predictable pricing model with pay as you grow scalability – One of the dirty little secrets of the hyperscale cloud are the monthly charges associated with data transfer. These charges are often referred to as egress charges, and they are fraught with cost overrun peril, especially when legacy applications are involved. EEC has no such charges. Connectivity is purchased either as Internet bandwidth or dedicated connections that are scalable. Costs are predictable, and you can pay as you grow with EEC.
Expedient Enterprise Cloud can help an organization simplify IT and make it more efficient. What are the business outcomes that follow?
Reduce or eliminate high-risk internal IT projects – Stop spending time on data center hardware upgrades, operating system upgrades, security patches, backup maintenance, complex disaster recovery syncing and testing scenarios. Focus IT instead on the business initiatives that can drive profitability, reduce costs or open new lines of business.
Improve IT staff efficiency – EEC delivers a computing environment that positions the IT staff for less firefighting and troubleshooting, which means more efficiency and more proactivity. Your IT team will have time to get to those important projects that have been tabled for years, like testing backup and disaster recovery regularly.
Free up IT staff time for more business-focused IT strategies – Once cloud is implemented and the efficiency gains are realized, typical areas of focus that cloud-enabled organizations pursue include application modernization and replacement, automation of repetitive tasks, and improving customer experience via customer facing applications and services. Repurposing IT staff time to pursue these areas can not only transform the business, it can increase IT staff job satisfaction as a side effect.
Interested in learning more about simplifying IT and increasing efficiency? See how Homes.com leveraged EEC and DRaaS from Expedient to transform its IT operations.
Doug Theis is the Director of Market Strategy in Expedient’s Indianapolis market focused on engaging with and improving the regional IT community through planning, sponsoring and attending community events, facilitating IT-focused continuing education opportunities, and sharing strategies, tactics, and research to help IT professionals stay abreast of best practices and industry trends. Connect with Doug at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter.