Cloud computing solutions are allowing for rapid deployment, a potential cost savings and the ability to be able to test and run new business models. But, in order to achieve these benefits for your cloud computing customers, the IT departments have to adapt their people, the processes and all the resources to the successful management of the cloud environment.
Cloud Environment Tips
Have you ever wondered how to realize the increased ROI (Return on Investment) from your cloud environment? The tips below will help you understand.
First embrace a customer to service mindset.
When you are managing a cloud environment, the IT department is responsible for each individual technology components like servers and networks, and they are also required to provide an end-to-end service that will meet your business objectives and SLAs of the customers. So, they have to assume the role of front-line customer service providers. By working closely with top cloud service providers (CSP), IT is able to create integrated operational support models to be able to address the customers’ complex business needs. Information that deals with the detailing of customer communication processes that are related to incident and problem management processes need to be included too.
Next, adapt the resources to meet your customer’s changing needs.
Some customers might rely on the cloud to be able to manage their critical business applications 24/7. But other customers may be okay with some negotiated downtime for maintenance. IT should perform a complete evaluation of its customer base to see their individual availability needs. With this information, you can distribute all resources and also schedule the downtime for maintenance with the smallest amount of disruption to their customers.
Now, you need to determine any manual or automated tasks.
While a lot of tasks are automated in the cloud, there could be some that will need to be done manually. So, when trying to decide which processes need to be automated, IT needs to consider the following criteria:
Has the process been tested, documented and 100 percent predictable? If the answers are yes, then the process is a good candidate for automation.
Will the process need specialized expertise to execute it? Remember, that when something goes wrong with an automated task, IT will have to rely on a manual process to fix it.
Managing Your Software Resources
With a traditional IT environment, some software updates are usually limited to the devices that are specific to each customer. In a true cloud environment, your customers will be able to access any shared IT resources that consist of many interdependent components. So, by updating one component, it can have an impact on several others. It is important for IT to keep track of each software asset, its interdependencies and its update history. The majority of software products typically are purchased from many third party vendors, it is important that IT maintains a detailed and up to date document and license tracking to make sure there has been proper regulatory compliance.
Synchronize the performance and capacity with demand.
In cloud environments, your customers will expect access to all resources on demand. So, IT has to work closely with their CSP (cloud service provider) to develop a cloud solution that will be able to adapt to your changing customer demands. If you monitor your customer’s actual usage over a period of time, you will be able to predict some availability requirements. But remember, IT also has to be proactive and coordinate the resources with the customers who have seasonal spikes in the overall usage.
If you are interesting in learning more about how to get the best possible ROI from your cloud environment, call Local Web today to discuss your needs.
To understand what the cloud is and the regulations surrounding it, visit The Cloud and Cloud Computing on Nist.gov.