By David Twohy
Hi everyone - I compiled this list from a combination of CIO meetings that I’ve conducted over the last 6 months. It was interesting to me that the CIO’s that I spoke with were very consistent with these themes:
1) Officially exploit the promise of cloud computing.
2) See and shape the future via data analytics.
3) Change the 80-20 budget trap, operational versus innovational spend.
4) Create a robust mobile strategy.
5) Social media. Moving from grudging acceptance to evangelism.
6) Massively adaptable datacenters.
7) Drive customer engagement to unprecedented levels.
8) CIO role evolving into Chief Acceleration Officer.
9) The business is going global. Is IT ready?
10) Measure and communicate IT and business results.
Let’s hone in on that first one. To start with, I’d like to offer my definition of Cloud computing.
There are lots of different definitions for Cloud, but I’m going to use the definition from the U.S. National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST). This definition includes terms like on-demand self-service, which is the unilateral, automatic provisioning of computing capabilities, and also includes the concept of a customer self service portal. This self service portal is what I affectionately refer to as the “iTune-ization” of IT. Most of us have downloaded Apps onto our Smart phones - we go into iTunes or Android App store, review all of the different apps available, and download what we want. Some of the apps are free and some come with a price tag. You choose what you want, you pay if necessary, you get the app immediately, and you don’t need to talk to anyone to make that happen. In most cases you are up and running with your new app in minutes. This is what end users have learned to expect, and most IT shops are being forced to react to it.
Cloud computing also involves broad network access, so capabilities are available over the network and users have access through standard network mechanisms and devices. In terms of broad network access -- everybody has a mobile device or devices today. In fact there are 5.9B mobile subscriptions today – that’s 87% of the world’s population! And these people have downloaded 10.9B apps!! It’s safe to say that people today manage their lives - including private and professional worlds - via these devices. In a recent survey, 99% of respondents indicated that they had business apps (such as email) on their smart phone. However, only 41% of professionals have IT support for these apps.
Resource pooling and rapid elasticity are also a key attributes of Cloud Computing because they allow multiple consumers to leverage a multi-tenant model, and these virtual resources are dynamically assigned and reassigned according to consumer demand. The average Windows server today still has single digit utilization characteristics. One of the things that many IT organizations have focused on: How do we drive up the utilization rate, which will drive efficiency improvements and drive down unit costs? One way to do that is to leverage converged infrastructure along with automated orchestration. This allows resources to be pooled, services to turned on and off, and reallocated when & where needed. Elasticity also implies that the IT organization is set up to leverage on premise and off premise resources to handle peak loads. This needs to be automated and orchestrated so that it is 100% transparent to the end user.
And then, there are measured services. As IT organizations roll out Service Catalogs to their users, these services need to include a metering capability so that your resource usage can be monitored, controlled and reported, and the users can be charged for the resources that they consume.
As you think about how to leverage the promise of cloud computing in YOUR organization, you need to consider all of these elements. So, this leads me to my question for you - where are you in your journey?? Please share your comments!
If you like this blog and are interested in hearing more thoughts about the IT industry, IT services, and other ideas real time, please follow me on Twitter. My handle is @DaveTwohyatHP.
Dave Twohy is WW VP of HP’s Technology Services Channel Organization. He has 23 years of experience in the IT industry and has worked extensively with large and small enterprises and channel partners around the world. He is a frequent speaker at industry events, partner conferences, and HP’s customer experience center.
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