Monday, December 15, 2014

Is Infrastructure as a Service right for your organization?

By: Chris Charette   Categories:Managed Services, Cloud Services

Is Infrastructure as a Service right for your organization?

As the new year approaches, I wondered where CIOs would focus their IT resources in 2015 to make a positive impact on their business. I came across an article from December 2013 by Janco Associates* where six out of the ten top CIO issues have a direct impact on IT infrastructure provisioning which is at the heart of today’s blog. 

According to the article, the top issues that CIOs need to address are driven by the current economic and political climate.

They include:

1. Continuing to move forward with new technology with increasingly constrained budgets
2. Continue to allocate sufficient resources to stay current with the social and portable digital revolution
3. Manage the mounting pressure on the enterprises IT infrastructure
4. Improve the service levels of the IT function and its applications
5. Improve IT technologies performance with business operations as the driving force
6. Be a transformation agent with the application of technologies that improve the operational and financial performance of the enterprise

I then came across this survey that provides insight into planning for next year. 

Deloitte CIO Survey 2014*

Over three-quarters of CIOs (77%) report that their 2015 IT budgets are either the same or increased from the previous year, which is pretty much the same result as the 2013 survey. 

The majority (55%) of IT budgets are allocated to 'business as usual' operations, with the rest split between supporting business change (23%) and business growth (22%). 

Not surprisingly, a very similar pattern emerges when CIOs are asked to identify the most important elements of their job: 55 percent list "Delivering business outcomes through business services", while "Transforming IT from a cost centre to a profit centre" and "Investing in emerging technologies" come much further down the rankings.

Current IT Infrastructure Provisioning Landscape

Increased Demand for Cloud Solutions

Your business needs are constantly changing and so are your compute resource requirements. One solution that is earning increasing adoption is the Cloud. It will help you gain maximum flexibility to adapt to workload changes by easily scaling your compute resources based on your business requirements. Cloud computing can do away with much of the hardware upgrades and software maintenance and patching that made up a chunk of the cost and average IT professional's day, forcing IT departments to adopt a more customer-focused role, according to CIOs.

Infrastructure as a Service comprises the most fundamental building blocks of any cloud service; the processing, storage and network infrastructure upon which all cloud applications are built. The beauty of infrastructure as a service (IaaS) is its ability to provide IT resources to companies as they need them. This gives data center managers the option of not having to spend hard dollars for resources that might stand idle 80 percent of the time at the same time that it turns processing and storage into commodities that can be ordered whenever they’re needed. 

IaaS is a provision model in which an organization outsources the equipment used to support operations, including storage, hardware, servers and networking components. The service provider owns the equipment and is responsible for housing, running and maintaining it. You will typically pay on a per-use basis.

Characteristics and components of IaaS include:

You need to look for a Cloud Service Provider to partner with that offers a highly secure and available (local/Canadian) Ontario based Tier III data center that includes robust infrastructure based on leading technology providers for server, storage, network and virtualization technologies including compliance with industry standards for security and data protection. 

The ideal IaaS provider offering would deliver the following benefits:

Business Benefits Include:

Technical competence and consultative capability

You should expect your IaaS provider to exceed or at least minimally meet (if your IT staff is strong) the standards of technical excellence that you expect of your own data center. You will also be best served if they also offer consultative services that can assist in infrastructure planning. 

Myths and misconceptions about IaaS

Some of the most common myths about IaaS are higher cost, lost control of your IT, security, complexity. These misconceptions need to be discussed internally with an expert to bring forth the true value and benefits of this solution. IaaS is an economically viable solution to address some of the top issues facing CIOs in 2015 with stagnating or modestly increased IT budgets from the previous year.

At Sentia, we are proud of being considered trusted partners by our customers and helping them be successful and grow. We offer various cloud services such as IaaS and can demonstrate our capabilities and provide professional services that come with selling traditional hardware based IT solutions. We are nimble enough to offer personalized service and large enough for our clients to receive enterprise-class services. 

Download our whitepaper, Building a Rock Solid Foundation with IaaS, to learn much more.

To read more about surveys mentioned in this blog, visit the links below:

* Top Issues for CIOs in 2014
* Deloitte CIO Survey 2014

Feel free to call me at my number below or email me to discuss your IT challenges.
Chris Charette, Vice President, Managed Services

Chris Charette

Chris Charette

As co-founder of Sentia, Chris Charette leads the Service Business Development and Services teams and brings a unique perspective as a management team member.

Other posts by Chris Charette
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Full biography

Chris has over 18 years of experience in the IT industry, having held various roles within sales, management, and distribution. He is a customer advocate, has a tenacious entrepreneurial spirit and is driven by success. Chris is a graduate of the University of Windsor.


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