Why Cloud Technology is important for business during COVID-19 Crisis?
April 02, 2020
From the speed of modern business to the rapid response to COVID-19 enabling millions of people to work remotely, it’s hard to imagine a world without cloud technology. The cloud has pushed the scalability, availability, and security of the solutions to new heights. Thanks to cloud technologies, a world of web-based apps, virtual desktops, endpoint encryption, conferencing software, Virtual Private Networking (VPN), and other cloud-enhanced tools make remote work possible from nearly any device, anywhere in the world.
Cloud computing provides greater security at such occurrences. Since the data is stored in a parametric environment, only those who have set the functions can access it, irrespective of what happens to the machine, wiping data from lost machines to prevent it from going into wrong hands.
World business is in constant change, the power of Business evaluation has changed hands from business heads to the demands of Customers as today’s highly competitive environment has enough choices in the market. Hence requirements are built for diligent insights into consumer behavior, to get an added leverage. This alongside a need for robust system that hosts and collates the apt information, channelizing information into optimal avenues, is what has bought innovations like cloud systems into existence
Importance of the Cloud is self-demonstrated during the time of Crisis such as Covid19, where employee can access any application and data while working from home, and contribute to business continuity.
The cloud has seen an outstanding growth that can be contributed to its rapid pace of adoption, taking precedence over traditional on premise hardware. If one follows the growth path of cloud carefully, he/she will be able to easily understand that the adoption of cloud services has seen a rise across all industry type and the size of business
Scalability and pay-as-you-go pricing models are the key benefit provided by cloud services to organizations for enhanced effectiveness through technology.
When you are migrating applications and data to the cloud, you want to use the cloud service which best suit your requirements, so your migrations is as smooth as possible.
There are many advantages for using a cloud services of which top are listed below.
- Faster deployment time :- Many cloud services provide the ability for you to quickly provision servers and other resources within a few steps, which tends to be a much simpler process than buying servers, installing the needed operating system, and placing it into a network or data center.
- Enhanced security features: – Cloud service providers take care of some of the tougher security issues, such as keeping unwanted traffic outside a specific scope from accessing the machines on which your data and apps reside and ensuring automatic security updates are applied to their systems to be safe from being vulnerable to the latest known security threats. Keep in mind, though, that you will still need to have security policies in place on your end, such as keeping mobile devices secure, making sure employees don’t divulge passwords or other sensitive information to unauthorized parties, and so on.
- Less infrastructure complexity: – Cloud systems tend to peel away the complexity of the infrastructure that underlies the architecture being used to provision new machines and make them all work together to provide the needed services. Instead, you are able to fill out some information on what is needed and launch the necessary services. This can save quite a bit of time, as those particular complexities are no longer a part of your process.
- Built-in Status Monitoring: – A number of cloud services are able to provide monitoring so that you can be notified when an app or machine has potential issues or is actually experiencing an outage. This, of course, can save you quite a bit of time as opposed to keeping track of the state of your services on your own.
- Automatic Backup and Logging: – Backup and logging services are extremely important, especially if you need to perform disaster recovery from an outage and see where things went wrong. The backups will allow you to get things up and running again, and the logs may provide some critical information to help you find out what caused the issue in the first place.
- “One Movement of Truth” for all service: -Workload deployment, monitoring, and mobility are all able to be taken care of in a single location as opposed to having to go through several different services that don’t necessarily use a common interface for the users.
- Greater Flexibility and Collaboration for Staff:-With cloud services, your team won’t need to be at a specific location to deploy, update, or fix issues with any of the various machines being used. This makes it a more flexible solution when compared to the necessity of being on-site. Also, the consistency of the provisioning and deployment processes the cloud provides can make it much easier to collaborate, as everyone can be on the same page, without shadow IT
- Reduced data centers: – By making use of the cloud, you can potentially reduce the number of data centers needed in your organization. Instead, you may be able to get by with one data center for particularly sensitive information, or even zero if that is not needed in your case. This, of course, can help save on the costs of operating multiple data centers.
- Improved Cost Management: – Some cloud providers also are able to provide auto scaling, which allows you to provision more services when needed while turning them off when they are not needed. This highly responsive technique can help even more with cost savings, as you only need to be charged for the time those additional systems are on instead of having to keep additional machines up and running all the time to deal with peak loads. In this way, your services can automatically respond with the number of resources needed at any given time, preventing both downtime and unnecessary expense!
- Accessibility: – All Cloud services provide provision to access the systems anywhere in world, an individual need not be at office to access the data. This can be of a great help for the companies who are operating in countries infected by War, Epidemic, natural calamity etc. as working from remote location is a reality.
One of the key phases that every organization goes through when considering migrating its legacy systems to the cloud is that of a discovery process. In this phase, the organization essentially takes a detailed inventory of its systems and then decides one by one on the effort and cost required to do the migration. This step is usually done by keeping the overall business case and objectives of the migration in perspective. For each of the applications and systems in its inventory, the organization may decide on a specific migration strategy or approach.
- Re-hosting – The first strategy is that of re-hosting. This is also referred to as lift and shift and involves migrating a system or application as is to the new cloud environment. The focus is to make as few changes to the underlying system as possible. During the discovery process of the migration planning exercise, systems that qualify for such a migration are usually considered quick-wins as they can be migrated with minimal cost and effort. However, as the application and system usually involves a simple lift and shift, such as system isn’t expected to utilize the cloud native features and thus isn’t optimized to run in a cloud environment. Thus depending on the system, it may even be more expensive to run the new migrated system on the cloud. These types of issues should be considered before categorizing a system for such type of migration.
- Refactoring – Refactoring is the second migration strategy and falls on the other extreme of the migration effort because it requires a complete change and reengineering of the system or application logic to fully make use of all the cloud features. When complete, however, this application is fully optimized to utilize cloud native features. So, even though the cost and effort required for this migration can be quite high, in the long run this approach can be efficient and cost effective because the application is reengineered to make use of the cloud native features.
- Re-platforming – This type of migration is similar to re-hosting but requires few changes to the application. Even though this approach closely resembles that of re-hosting, it’s categorized differently simply because it requires some changes. For example, in doing such migrations, an organization may plug its application to a new database system that’s on the cloud or change its web server from a proprietary version such as Web logic to Apache Tomcat, which is an open source based web server. So, for planning purposes it’s important to categorize it as such. Obviously, if a system or application is going to be changed to make even slight changes, it may need to be put through more thorough re-testing processes.
- Re purchasing-This migration strategy entails essentially switching the legacy application in favor of a new but similar application on the cloud. Migrating to a SaaS based system would be an example of such a migration where an organization may decide to migrate from its legacy financial system to a SaaS based financial ERP system.
- Retire – The fifth strategy is about retiring systems and applications that an organization no longer needs. During the discovery process, an organization may find applications as part of its inventory that are no longer actively used or have limited use. In such cases, those types of applications may be considered for retirement and users of those systems (if any) can be provided other alternatives
- Retain – In some cases, the organization may decide not to touch certain applications and systems and to postpone their migration for later in the future. This may be either that the applications are too critical to be touched at that point in time or require a more thorough business case analysis. Either way, it’s normal for organizations to not touch some applications and systems during their cloud migration efforts. However, in certain cases such as a data center migration, organizations may not have a choice and will have to consider one of the earlier described strategies.
MBG can help businesses design, implement, and manage cloud systems in order to improve efficiency, flexibility, and safety. MBG can assist businesses in the transition from a hardware-based infrastructure to a cloud-based system. In these cases, consultants seek to understand a company’s business and technology goals, select appropriate cloud technology, and work to ensure a seamless transition.
Zubeen Anwar Kazi
Designation: Associate Director – Digital Transformation/Strategy
MBG Corporate Services
United Arab Emirates
Zubeen is leader in digital transformation and project management. He is an Information Science Engineering graduate and also certified in CBAP, Lean six sigma green belt, ITIL V3 expert, and a certified scrum master.
Zubeen has a wealth of knowledge in digital transformation and project management professional with experience in with large scale private, public and Government sectors.