Security, Cost & Flexibility: Main Reasons to Move to the Cloud
Growing businesses are constantly looking for solutions to improve their internal IT systems. The increased use of the cloud by corporations even government agencies make it a solution to improve productivity, fuel future growth, and give businesses flexibility their internal systems may not currently have.
“Ultimately, a move to the cloud must be contemplated by companies like any other major change in technology,” said Thoran Rodrigues, in an article in TechRepublic. “The benefits and drawbacks need to be weighed against each other and evaluated carefully.”
So what are some of the benefits of moving a company to the cloud?
DISYS Cloud Enablement experts Naveen Vijay and Aravind Krishnaswamy weigh in; saying the cloud’s nimbleness – its ability to change — are highlights in making a move to the cloud.
“Businesses can create ideal IT infrastructures using the cloud, but most companies don’t have the required resources to do it properly,” said Mr. Vijay, a cloud architecture specialist at DISYS. “Cloud services are often the best approach to giving businesses the ability to access resources on demand and scale them to their needs.”
Mr. Krishnaswamy agrees, and adds surges in business and scalability are also big cloud selling points – allowing companies to always be prepared for large traffic loads.
“A business campaign may result in a quick jump of system traffic and if you aren’t prepared for the massive increase in hits, your systems could go down,” said Mr. Krishnaswamy, a DISYS cloud specialist. “This situation leads to missed opportunities and lost revenue. In such situations, the cloud’s auto-scaling capabilities can be leveraged to quickly add more servers to application stacks to handle the load.”
Many businesses are hesitant about moving to the cloud because their ‘control’ of the system is taken away from a room full of servers and systems are moved into a virtual space. But the additional flexibility this offers is probably one of the most alluring cloud attributes.
No longer are there wasted efforts in trying to size a server beforehand as servers within the cloud can be created on the fly. If more disk space is needed, adding more RAM or CPU space isn’t a problem with cloud computing. A business can reallocate resources in moments without worrying about finding a physical server that will have the resources needed.
“The centralized provisioning of IT resources from one central console makes it so much easier for IT teams to give the business the proper resources,” Krishnaswamy said. “For instance, creating a DMZ network is just a few clicks away unlike configuring multiple network routers and switches.”
Vijay agrees, and adds to the point, “Abstracting access to the cloud network eliminates the potential of manual errors. Cloud also provides the ability to automate/self-heal failures.”
And while the agility and flexibility of cloud use for business has been proven, security risks have been a concern as the ability to understand where your data is really stored is hard to wrap one’s head around.
Krishnaswamy and Vijay explain the cloud infrastructure is designed and managed according to best security practices as well as tough security compliance standards. Data centers are housed in nondescript facilities, and physical access is strictly controlled both at the perimeter and at building ingress points to professional security staff utilizing surveillance, intrusion detection systems and other electronic means. Authorized staff must pass two-factor authentication a minimum of two times to access data center floors.
“All visitors and contractors are required to present identification and are signed in and continually escorted by authorized staff,” Vijay said. “Data centers only provide access and information to employees and contractors who have a legitimate business need for such privileges. All access to data centers is logged and audited routinely.”
Data centers also have power systems designed to be fully redundant and maintainable without impacting operations; they are climate and temperature controlled and have automatic fire detection and suppression equipment installed to reduce risk.
“AWS (Amazon Web Services, a DISYS preferred partner) monitors electrical, mechanical and life support systems and equipment so any issues are immediately identified,” Krishnaswamy said. “Preventative maintenance is performed to maintain continued operability of equipment.”
Further proving the low security risks of cloud breaches, the US government has been moving its IT infrastructure into the cloud. In 2014, the US Federal Government spent $1.7 billion moving its systems to a private cloud.
“Security is actually a major reason businesses should move to the cloud,” Vijay said. “And cost plays a big part, too.”
Cloud environments are more cost-effective than on-premise environments both in short- and long-term. Cloud Infrastructures not only reduce Capital Expenditures (CAPEX), but also lowers cost related to floor space, storage and IT Operations – in terms of managing the resources and indirect costs such as network and storage infrastructure.
This, coupled with the pay-as-you-go model cloud employs, allows a company to save money directly as only the resources used are paid for.
“Progressive CIOs are adopting cloud computing,” said Vala Afshar, a cloud computing writer with the Huffington Post. “CIOs recognize with proper planning, cloudy days can quickly turn from downpour to a break in the sky with sunshine. With the proper due diligence, a combination of cloud and on-premise solutions will help CIOs become more strategic and relevant to the business.”
NOTE: From planning to production, DISYS’ cloud enablement portfolio includes all of the services and support required to move your business to the cloud. Whether you are evaluating private, public or hybrid clouds, the DISYS cloud team is ready to help your cloud computing initiatives succeed. Get in contact with a specialist today at http://www.disys.com/services-new/cloud-enablement/.