While Cloud adoption continues to move forward at a decent velocity, enterprises are not taking full advantage of the powerful set of opportunities that a transition to Cloud opens up. The achievement of “CloudIT”, the new state of IT built on a foundation of Cloud, allows enterprises to address this gap and power their journeys of digital transformation. This blog posits that “CloudIT” is the ultimate enabler of digital transformation and that failing to achieve this new state will only lead to a risk of being disrupted or anemic growth and weak innovation.
“CloudIT” is very different from previous technology shifts. The shift to Cloud is an opportunity to reimagine everything that is Information Technology. The status quo in IT, where on-premise, static computing and operational models prevail, is based on thinking that had emerged and was refined during an era that saw a switch from physical to virtual for compute, storage and, to some smaller degree, networks. Today, service catalogs offered by major cloud vendors are broad, mature, compete on similar sets of capabilities, and are central in the race to dominate the enterprise market.
“CloudIT” progresses at a different pace proving the vast difference:
- Automation replaces manual administration
- Just-in-time does away with prefabrication
- Bolted-on layering of security and monitoring disappears, and these key services are natively integrated
- Microservices and well-staged pipelines replace monoliths
- Event-driven trumps batch-oriented
- Continuous demotes scheduled
- Real-time APIs mediate instead of data movement
Not since the personal computer democratized access to computing has a similar, equalizing, and liberating set of capabilities become readily accessible. However, this is much bigger than the PC revolution. The cloud democratizes access to vast amounts of computing resources, as well as virtually infinite storage and networking power that is procured and delivered within a consumption-based utility model. One could never have imagined posing challenging questions to CEOs and technology leaders such as, “What could you do with half a million CPU cores, all the storage, and network capacity, for a day, for less than it costs to fly the corporate jet from New York to Washington DC?” Challenges like these were outside the realm of possibility. Today, virtually all barriers have dissolved. Yet, despite low barriers, most organizations and their leadership, are not capitalizing on the new potential that is there.
The reason? The vestiges of pre-cloud models of IT continue to inform the adoption and transition to the Cloud. This results in trying to treat the Cloud more as the next step in the evolution of the physical data center rather than the software-based concept that it has become. The shift of IT to a software-defined concept requires that we reimagine all aspects of IT. All these aspects make up our digital transformation enablement framework. Following this framework leads to a new destination, a new state we identify with “CloudIT”. If organizations view and, more importantly, reimagine these aspects through a new lens that is informed a new spirit of Cloud, then a journey towards “CloudIT” can take place.
With such a rich and game-changing set of changes, a new kind of thinking is required. More specifically, this new thinking requires that we deeply reimagine and rethink how IT takes place. The disruption that it can drive is phenomenal. Successful innovation would be just around the corner.
Content adapted from full version located at https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/how-digital-transformation-can-powered-cloudit-part-bisignani.
About the Author
Michael “Mick” Bisignani, a professional technologist, has held CTO and IT director positions. In his spare time, Michael aspires to become a burgeoning chef. You can follow him on Instagram @micksterct to tempt your taste buds.