Welcome to the world of 24×7. A world where everything you need or want is immediately available. The advent of the internet and mobile applications has changed the mindset of customers and citizens, rendering instant gratification as a necessity rather than a nicety. Consider the last business trip you took. After checking your rental car confirmation on your phone, you pulled up a GPS application to map your route to the hotel. Later, you used your phone again to check into your return flight and sent a boarding pass to your email account. The age of waiting for information is over. In this new era of 24×7, enterprises are challenged to find new ways to meet customers and constituent demands.
The world is instant and the enterprise needs to be instant as well. To help address rapidly changing customer needs, technology should be embedded into every touch point of the enterprise. Businesses and governments alike should have the ability to serve citizens, partners, employees, and clients with whatever they want and need, instantly.
Changes Ahead: The Future of IT Sourcing
Today CIOs are faced with a variety of technology sourcing optionsthe traditional in-house and outsourced technology deployment models, as well as new private cloud delivery methods and public cloud services that can be consumed on an as needed basis.
Enterprises are adopting the use of cost-effective and flexible cloud services as a powerful way to increase efficiency. Cloud services are changing the way companies create, share, consume, and dispose data. However for all the efficiencies that can be gained, not every workload is appropriate for the cloud. Organizations need to consider factors such as privacy, security, reliability, service levels and regulatory constraints, before deciding whether a cloud environment is right for that service. Organizations need to establish a decision criterion based on the enterprise objectives, which vary by organization, department, and even from workload to workload. For instance, while an enterprise may feel a public cloud may not be suited to run its mission-critical financial applications, it may use a public cloud to run standard, predictable services such as test and development or messaging.
The research also shows that senior business government and technology executives believe that by 2015, 18% of their IT delivery will be through the public cloud and 28% via the private cloud. That leaves the rest of IT delivery to be handled by in-house or outsourced delivery methods.
Leading enterprises are cognizant that there is no one end-all be-all delivery model that can meet everyones needs. For instance, while many employees choose to have paychecks electronically and automatically deposited into one or more bank accounts, enterprises still need to continue offering physical checks for employees that prefer to receive hard copies. Providing choice in delivery ensures that everyones needs are met.
To gain a competitive or service advantage, organizations must develop and manage a multi-delivery model that allows them to deliver enterprise services dynamically. This hybrid approach allows organizations to choose the best technology that is right for their specific needs.
Choosing All the Above
How can an organization build the right hybrid environment?
While it may sound basic, organizations must first assess what business requirements they need to meet. For each individual workload, a discussion needs to be facilitated that considers qualities such as availability, data sensitivity, and response time. These discussions need to take place in the context of the financial, administrative, and operational constraints of the organization to ensure that decisions tie back to the business goals. Without this analysis, organizations run the risk of failing to meet enterprise needs, or over-provisioning services by running them in environments that are over-engineered for their needs.
For example, what percentage of your workload is mission critical? Does your workload have regular or irregular demand requirements? For a website, the demand profile can be measured in how many resource requests are received during a particular timeframe. For a database, the demand profile could be measured in the number and type of processed transactions. Organizations should split their technology needs into several different categories and then select the best delivery model per category.
After figuring out what workloads or constituent services should be placed on traditional or cloud services, organizations need to develop a business case and roadmap for each service. For instance, if youre moving messaging, web development, or testing workloads from a traditional model to the cloud, its helpful to visualize how the workload will use cloud services to run at maximum value while managing risk and lowering costs.
When the time comes to implement new delivery models, organizations will need to ensure that appropriate tools and services are in place to provide critical monitoring and management of a hybrid technology service portfolio. To gain the benefits of a hybrid environment, organizations must have a flexible IT delivery model across different sourcing options, but managed as an integrated technology environment.
In this 24×7 world, tomorrows leaders will be the organizations that embed technology into every process to capitalize, rather than simply adapt to changing customer or constituent expectations.