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Demand choice for your cloud journey

Choice should be a focal point of any cloud strategy, and I see it as a minimum qualifier when evaluating cloud offerings in the marketplace. As a premier provider of Enterprise IT services, we must regularly overhaul and enhance our portfolio to truly offer the level of responsiveness and agility that our business customers demand -- and choice is the attribute that trumps all others when it comes to enabling agility.


Let’s begin by reviewing some of the key choices involved in cloud adoption. This is by no means an exhaustive list; just enough to illustrate the point that choice is a key consideration.

  • What types of systems will we continue to build in-house, and which workloads are “commodity” functions that we want to obtain from cloud providers?
  • What will our mix of public versus private cloud be? How will it change over time?
  • In what circumstances will we demand enterprise class, high-availability clouds? In what circumstances are we just looking for basic clouds for non-critical workloads?
  • Should we build out a cloud in our data center or “theirs?” Why not both?

These are big choices that most organizations are still trying to finalize as they implement their first iteration of cloud deployments. The CIO must define a cloud ecosystem that minimizes his or her exposure to an evolving cloud marketplace and the changing needs of the business. Most businesses have an IT horror story (or two) about adopting an expensive, inflexible, proprietary system (think ERP) that turned out to be a bad bet over the long term. We have learned from these mistakes of the past, and we now know that we need IT vendors who value the same things we do – agility, the ability to work effectively in a multi-vendor environment, reduced complexity, and a full portfolio of options. In short, we need vendors who give us a wealth of good choices.


Unfortunately, the cloud marketplace today contains many vendors that are offering poor or even bad choices. Amazon and VCE have their strengths, but customer-choice is not one of them. These companies have limited, proprietary cloud offerings that almost certainly result in vendor lock-in. Amazon does not sell cloud hardware or software, and their outages are well documented. VCE is a Frankenstein of a solution that brings together some of the most expensive, proprietary technologies ever developed. I find it difficult to see how anyone could build a business case around making a sizeable investment in either of these ecosystems.


When it comes to cloud choices, I am proud that my business card has a blue and white HP logo on it. It’s no secret that HP is not the only player in the cloud space. I think it’s worth calling out a couple of the key differentiators that make us the strongest player, especially when it comes to offering our customers good choices.

  • We are the only vendor who offers a full line of cloud hardware, software, and services from within our own organization. Some cloud providers need to get two (or more) partners on the phone to present an integrated offering; in many cases I can do that myself or with a couple of colleagues.
  • We don’t have the specific solution you need? Chances are good we can build it with our partner community. We know we can’t meet 100% of the cloud needs out there, and we find innovative solutions in the marketplace all the time. We work with hundreds of partners who complement our core offerings, and we make it seamless from the customer’s perspective.
  • We support all cloud delivery models, including “build your own” and service providers
  • We support OpenStack cloud solutions. Not only are we an active contributor to the project, we have incorporated it into our cloud hardware and software offerings.
  • We integrate with other cloud providers. Much like our integration of OpenStack software, this truly gives customers a way to avoid vendor lock-in.

These characteristics enable customers to make sound choices. At our upcoming HP Discover conference in Frankfurt, Germany, we’re going to be highlighting the ways in which we provide consistency and confidence in our cloud solutions, in addition to choice. I urge you to evaluate your own cloud strategy and any cloud vendors you’re looking at against all 3 of those criteria, but I particularly encourage you to take the time to explore customer-choice.


Working with a cloud vendor that offers you the greatest amount of choice will minimize your exposure in the evolving cloud marketplace and maximize your ability to adjust your cloud ecosystem quickly as your business needs change.


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Jeremy Brann

Labels: cloud
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About the Author
Jeremy has 12 years of consulting experience in IT strategy, systems integration, and cloud computing. He has an MBA from Indiana University...
About the Author(s)
  • I’m a Global Strategist, a certified (PMI) Project Manager, specializing in business to IT alignment, agility consulting, Infrastructure Transformation and Strategic Architecture for Big Data, Mobility, Private Cloud, Unified Communications and Collaboration. I drive the strategy, vision and content of strategic consulting services in the Big Data IT Infrastructure services area at HP. As part of this, I meet with senior level customers to understand their challenges, conduct workshops to determine future vision and roadmaps as well as presenting at industry and analyst events.
  • Craig Partridge is the WW strategy lead for HP Technology Services Networking group. His role now covers strategy for consulting, professional and support services. The major areas of focus are Mobility, UC, Cloud Networking and IPv6. All aligned to core HP networking solutions - simplified, secure, optimized and available.
  • Don has held roles with the business and marketing of consulting for HP. Currently he supports HP's Client and Microsoft Solutions and the emerging Mobility Consulting services. He holds a MBA from UCLA's Anderson School.
  • Over 12 years of consulting, new technology services development and marketing experience covering data center, IT infrastructure, cloud technology domains. Hande holds a M.B.A degree from Bentley College, MA.
  • Having joined HP in 2003 Ian Jagger is the world-wide marketing and program manager for HP Technology Consulting's Strategic Consulting Services, Critical Facilities Services and Energy and Sustainability Management Services, as well as emerging IT services Prior to his current role, he served as the HP Services Marketing Manager for Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, having joined HP in a similar role in the Middle East. Prior to HP Jagger had a 15 year international sales career, culminating in being Sales and Marketing Director for Steelcase Inc addressing Northern Europe before focusing more specifically on marketing. His initial focus was consultancy and interim marketing management, primarily for small to mid-sized customers based or looking to expand in the Middle Eastern region. Immediately prior to joining HP he was a strategic marketing consultant addressing investment targets for a technology fund. Born in Rochdale, United Kingdom, Jagger holds an honors bachelor of science degree in economics and a degree in social psychology from Loughborough University, England. He also holds a Masters Diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing, is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and a Chartered Marketer. He has one daughter and lives in Cary, North Carolina.
  • Jeff Enters works in the HP Technology Services Networking organization and consults with customers on their IT strategies. He has over 20 years of consulting, design and integration experience in multi-vendor Voice and Data environments.
  • Editor and writer with 12+ years experience in the corporate software and technology sectors.
  • Jordan Lee has over twenty years of consulting and industry experience, helping some of the world’s largest firms craft and implement their business and IT strategies. His priority is to advise Hewlett-Packard clients how to best prepare for and take full advantage of the dramatic shifts in the IT economy taking place today. Over his career, Mr. Lee has held executive positions both in industry and consulting organizations, where he has provided consulting to some of the largest firms in the US. Over the years, he has helped his clients redesign business processes and organizations, and implement strategic IT programs around ERP, System Integration, Business Intelligence, and IT Infrastructure.
  • Jordan owns the worldwide mobility portfolio for TS Network Consulting and is a OneHP Mobility ambassador. His expertise centers on mobility strategy, client and applications virtualization and enterprise mobility management technologies.
  • Eduardo Zepeda, WW TS Social Media Program Manager & Internal Communications for WW Technology Services Blogging on behalf of HP Technology Services (TS_Guest)
  • Ken Larson has over 30 years of experience in Information Technology aligning business to technology. As an Enterprise Architect, he has delivered many successful architecture related services across business and government sectors in manufacturing, insurance, banking, oil, utilities, US state and federal governments. He is certified in TOGAF and IT Service Management.
  • Laura Cunningham is a CPA and business consultant with HP Technology Services Consulting. She helps CIOs and their teams bridge the gap between what the CIO wants and what the CFO requires by building a comprehensive business case that can withstand financial scrutiny.
  • I am on the WW Cloud and Big Data Solutions Team. I help our customers adopt HP advanced solutions that are made up of products and services from across HP. I have over 30 years experience in the technology business including 17 years of business ownership.
  • Broad mix of experiences developed in more than 20 years of technology-driven innovation. Fascinated by changes triggered by mix of behavior, needs and technology. Bachelor in Theoretical Physics.
  • Working for EMEA TS Consulting, I am a Specialist in end to end management of customer data, from creation through consumption, to protection and preservation and ultimately (controlled) destruction. This includes, host, connectivity, storage, data protection and backup and archive, from a technical and more importantly, operational perspective. I have worked in the storage and data management industry for over 15 years, on both sides of the desk, as a customer and now as a consultant.
  • Patrick Lownds is a Senior Technology Consultant and is involved in designing and delivering both Client Virtualization and Cloud Computing solutions in the datacenter. Patrick co-authored “Mastering Hyper-V Deployment
  • I’m a Global Chief Engineer certified Exchange Architect and Master (MCA and MCM), specializing in Messaging, Mobility, Private Cloud, Unified Communications and Collaboration. This relates to all work to coordinate sales, pursuit and delivery readiness in all services that relate to HP's portfolio around Microsoft Exchange. Includes internal readiness as well as external events, analyst briefings. With 25+ year’s experience in the industry. Thomas has been involved with Microsoft products since 1993. Specialties: - Architecting complex public and private Cloud solutions for Exchange, SharePoint and Lync in standard, dedicated or hybrid scenarios. - Lead the HP specialists team unit to win and acheive our business targets and budget - Drive HP's Exchange Services for Private Cloud - Working with partners, vendors and internal teams to align, expand and grow HP's strategy.
  • Tim Swiader has twenty plus years in the Information Technology industry. He has worked primarily with the fortune 100 and legacy carriers transforming their applications, networks and data center facilities.
  • Tom Clement has over 30 years experience in the areas of adult learning, secondary education, and leadership development. During this time Tom has been a consistent champion of “non-traditional” training delivery methods, including blended learning, virtual delivery (self paced and instructor led), the use of training games and simulations, and experiential learning. Tom has spent the past 25 years of his career at Hewlett Packard, focused most recently on HP’s global Virtualization, Cloud, and Converged Infrastructure customer training programs. Tom manages the strategic direction and overall performance of these training programs, ensuring these worldwide programs help HP’s customers capitalize on the business opportunities made available by IT advancements in each of these subject areas. Tom and his global teammates utilize best in class instructors, course content and supporting equipment infrastructure to deliver these training programs to HP’s customers. The team prides itself on providing the Virtualization, Cloud, and Converged Infrastructure content customers need when and where they need it, anywhere in the world. Tom is based in the Washington, DC suburbs and can be reached at
  • Tari is a Distinguished Technologist with 30 years of IT and cyber security experience. He is dual board certified in information security/business continuity and is responsible for a wide range of management and technology consulting services encompassing information security, disaster recovery, privacy, and risk management. His problem-solving skills, knowledge of various technology platforms, compliance statutes, industries, as well as his experience in deploying defense-in-depth and InfoSec Program solution architectures is commonly applied when advising CIOs/CISOs as well as leveraged in numerous HP client engagements throughout the world. Tari has designed, built, and managed some of the world’s largest InfoSec programs allowing them to defend against even the most aggressive attackers.
  • I provide technical consulting services at all phases including analysis, planning, design and implementation. I have a wide range of experience in WAN and LAN technologies, as well as providing security solutions and deploying operating system infrastructure. Besides working directly with clients to deploy technology in their data centers, I also find myself architecting or discussing solutions with a business’s chief information officer, helping to lay out a roadmap for the coming years.
  • Bill is the Principal Data Center Energy Technologist for HP Technology Services. Kosik is a licensed professional engineer, LEED Accredited Professional, a Certified Energy Manager, and a Building Energy Modeling Professional. He is responsible for research and implementation of sustainable, energy-efficient, and environmentally responsible design strategies for data centers. He is currently a subject matter expert for the USGBC on the new LEED Data Centers, the EPA/DOE on unification of energy metrics, and the Green Grid on responding to the EPA’s Energy Star for Data Centers program. He has an engineering degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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