What’s The Cloud? 1st of 3 simple understand guides to help you…

ClouD computing FOR MIDSIZE BUSINESSES

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1st of 3 simple understand guides to help you to discover:-

PART ONE:- WHAT IS The Cloud….

Midsize companies often have limited resources and therefore want to make the most of their IT investment (dollars, skills, infrastructure and capacity) to achieve economies of scale. They need innovative, secure and cost-effective ways to cut costs without disrupting current business operations, and improve both efficiency and employee productivity. They also want to enter new markets and find new opportunities, while managing risk, improving business agility and retaining customers.

To achieve these goals, many midsize companies are starting to think differently about infrastructure. Instead of acquiring more storage, adding new servers or server rooms, or “ripping and replacing” inefficient hardware and software, midsize businesses could benefit from the cloud computing model.

Cloud Computing directly addresses midsize business needs…..

 Cloud Computing is a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider integration.”

It rapidly provisions standardized services over the public Internet or a private network and can be used to reduce IT complexity and accelerate business value. It is an entirely new way of thinking about computing and business. And it can lead to extraordinary cost savings and business innovation.

This blog provides a brief overview of cloud computing, explains how midsize companies can benefit, and describes the steps they can take to take advantage of what it has to offer.

Thinking differently about infrastructure…..

Midsize companies require flexibility and agility to respond to change, to innovate rapidly and to achieve faster time to market so they can profitably grow their business—even while facing resource constraints and a need to reduce costs. However, it can be difficult to be flexible and agile when you consider the infrastructure and computing challenges that are affecting midsize companies in the form of:

    • Lost business opportunities—Midsize companies are losing business opportunities because their IT environments lack the agility and scale needed for innovation. They need infrastructure with an amplifying effect, one that enables them to compete with larger companies
    • Complex IT change management—Change management processes used by midsize companies can be very complex and this can result in errors
    • Costly infrastructure investments—Investing in new infrastructure can be costly in terms of upfront outlay and the “rip and replace” process
    • Server sprawl with low utilization—Many midsize businesses are experiencing server sprawl but usage levels remain low while others don’t know what resources they are using or what they cost
    • Security, audit and compliance—Compliance, auditing and security patching are taking a significant toll on midsize company budgets
    • Difficulty funding new IT projects—Midsize companies are not able to fund new IT priorities because their IT budget is being spent on maintaining their current infrastructure

As a result, midsize companies need innovative, secure and cost-effective ways to cut costs without disrupting current business operations, improve efficiency and employee productivity, enter new markets and find new opportunities, manage risk, improve business agility and retain customers. To achieve these goals, it’s time for midsize companies to start thinking differently about infrastructure. Instead of acquiring more storage, adding new servers or server rooms, or “ripping and replacing” inefficient hardware and software, midsize businesses could benefit from the cloud computing model. The Cloud provides an amplifying effect that enables midsize companies to compete with larger companies.

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It’s time to consider The Cloud…..

In recent years the Internet has taken on greater significance as a conduit for an enormous amount of computing capability. Using the Internet to gain access to and deploy computing resources is often referred to as a “cloud computing.” In a nutshell, cloud computing changes IT services delivery in the same way that ATMs changed banking and the web has changed commerce.

The Cloud provides applications, data and IT resources using virtualised computing resources and you can use it to acquire computing services that can help improve business performance and control the costs of providing IT resources to your organization. Four major categories of cloud computing services have emerged that transform how IT services can be used:-

1) BPaaS 

The first category is cloud business processes as a service, which makes business processes available from the cloud using web interfaces and exploiting web-oriented cloud architecture. The provider of the business processes is responsible for the related functions. Examples include multi-tenant, self-service provisioning, elastic scaling and usage metering or pricing

2) SaaS

The second category is cloud software as a service, which makes a provider’s enterprise applications, analytics and collaboration available to consumers from the provider’s cloud infrastructures using a thin client user interface. Customer relationship management, enterprise resource planning and business analytics software are examples of enterprise applications that you can find in this layer

3) PaaS

The third category is cloud platform as a service, which deploys consumer-created or acquired applications created using programming languages and tools (supported by a provider) onto the cloud infrastructure. Examples of these applications include database applications, middleware, development tools, Java and Web 2.0 application runtimes

4) IaaS

The fourth category is cloud infrastructure as a service, which provides provisions processing, storage, networks and other fundamental computing resources to the consumer. Servers, networking, data center, storage and security are examples of what this category of cloud computing delivers

 Public / Private / Hybrid…..

The Cloud is also not limited to one type of deployment. There is a spectrum of options available for you to choose from. The most common is a public cloud option. At the other end of the spectrum is a private cloud deployment where a company owns, manages and controls all the resources. It is also possible to merge the options between public and private and create what has been coined a “hybrid cloud.” Companies can elect to design and build their own cloud computing environments, putting in place the infrastructure, hardware and software needed to operate and manage a private cloud. Or, they might decide to manage only certain layers, such as the application layer, and tap into a public cloud or a third party-owned private cloud for the infrastructure and platform layers. It is one of the most effective ways that midsize companies can meet infrastructure and computing demands without breaking the bank.

How to get onto The Cloud…..

1) Finding a trusted advisor with cloud experience to assess your business processes and architecture and make recommendations –  here are a few examples of people for you to speak

2) Try it for free for one month with SoftLayer, an IBM company. This free one month trial of CloudLayer Computing from SoftLayer allows you to deploy public cloud instances with exceptional features in as little as five minutes.

 

 

This three step guide was produced for Service Address  by Simon Porter who is the Vice President for Mid-Market Sales, Europe for IBM ( for connecting Simon via Twitter – @SimonLPorter ) and thus as a result, it enables Service Address to share the answers to questions that we are commonly asked. We do hope you have found this blog informative….

To learn more about how we can help you understand The Cloud better, then contact us via here or complete the form below:-