At the same time, however, for many, it perhaps feels like cloud hasn’t come far enough - once users get an appetite for technology they want the IT version of the moon on a stick.
This is putting increased pressure on already pressurised IT departments and means business and tech decision makers have to provide even more leadership and guidance then ever before. In our first IT Pro report entitled Cloud Computing in 2012, we looked at what cloud is and pondered its potential for business transformation.
This report aims to move the story on and arm IT professionals, managers, directors and C-level executives with greater insight into not just what cloud can do for their business, but the other factors they must consider. So how can the two co-exist and what do businesses need to bear in mind and do to get there?
Security and privacy continue to be major concerns and barriers when it comes to cloud adoption. We also run down the storage options available to businesses to help you make the right choice for your organisation. This report also features cases studies from the Alzheimer’s Society, Cancer Research and Lamborghini so business and technology decision makers can benefit from the experience of others when it comes to the cloud. All in all, we hope this report provides you with answers to some key questions and leaves you feeling ready to take cloud to the next level in your organisation rather than taking a step back.
Cloud computing offers substantial benefits for businesses, namely lower costs, increased performance, scalability, rapid development, increased mobility, virtualized and environment.
Now, if you are seriously considering cloud computing but don’t know where to start or not sure which business function to move to the cloud, here are what the stats say: 46 percent businesses use cloud-based e-mail apps, 40 percent use the cloud for testing and development, and 38 percent of businesses adopting the cloud for backup and disaster recovery purposes.
For more interesting facts, check out this cloud computing infographic by UKFast (click to enlarge). Now that we've been floating around in the digital ether for a few years, what have we learned? Business technology company CSC commissioned a survey of IT decision makers in eight countries to find out the motivations behind their move to cloud computing systems and its effects on their businesses. Today we are going to look specifically at the role of Cloud Business Strategy and our time tested workshop approach that we use with our customers to derive a road map to success. Full transparency for IT consumers as to what they consume and what are the costs for what they are consuming, i.e. Understanding from an economic and technical perspective of where is the best place to run cloud workloads. Incentivizing users to “do the right thing” due to understanding of economics and transparency of costs. Incentivizing users to “do the right thing” due to vastly improved day 0, day 1 and day 2 operations automation.
We start by asking for current pain points across the CBM spectrum listed after the first paragraph above. We then engage our customers in a discussion of what they would like to see in the future across the CBM spectrum and what tangible improvements that they can anticipate as they mature across each of these disciplines. Lastly, a deep dive into data sources that can be used for setting up automated cost modeling are investigated.
Embedded within the Cloud Business Strategy document, is an illustration of what will happen to the organizations maturity across the CBM spectrum if the road map is followed.
For more information and to schedule a Cloud Business Management Workshop for your organization, please contact your local VMware representative.
Khalid Hakim is an operations architect with the VMware Operations Transformation global practice.
Reg Lo is the Director of VMware Accelerate Advisory Services and is based in San Diego, CA.
This entry was posted in CloudOps, IT Transformation, Operations Transformation and tagged Charlie McVeigh, cloud business management, IT transformation, khalid hakim, reg lo, Strategy on February 3, 2016 by Sarah Butler. As a Microsoft Online Services Partner SOS can advise you on the best cloud based solution for your organisation.
If you are looking at implementing or just investigating cloud based solutions then do not hesitate to contact us for a no obligation proposal.
In our last cloud operations business transformation blog, we talked about the cloud business strategy and its importance in formulating the vision and the plan as to how you want to run your cloud as a business. There is a saying: you can’t manage what you can’t control, and you can’t control what you can’t define.
VMware recommends a unique approach for defining cloud services, through which a service owner defines a 360-degree view of how the cloud services would be established, managed and delivered effectively and efficiently to meet or exceed the expected value. Service Overview – describe the service in terms of its purpose, goals, consumers, criticality, availability criteria and rhythm of business. Service Chart – map out the end-to-end cloud service in a graphical representation that is easy to consume.
Service Portfolio and Consumer Management – the service portfolio answers the questions, who are our customers and why should they buy the service from us. Service Design and Development – provide high level information about how the services will be designed and developed, especially if the service isn’t yet in production.
Service Catalog Management – identify service catalog structure parameters and possible blueprints. Proactive Operations Management – define the service operation requirements for support and reliability from the event and performance monitoring to availability, demand, capacity, continuity and security management.
Provisioning and Change Management – define the service provisioning lifecycle and associated change management policies including how the service will be pre-approved and auto-provisioned (for maximum efficiency). Service Performance and KPIs – define any applicable service related strategic, tactical and operational performance indicators (KPIs), and the metrics that will be collected to demonstrate that required performance was achieved. Service Reviews – define service-based review meetings to discuss and remediate any operational or consumer related topics.
Service Marketing – define the key applicable service marketing elements for a successful service promotion and value realization within different company cultures. In our next blog, we will take this to the next level as we learn to establish a cloud service-based cost model and cost out cloud services end-to-end.  This will enable you to understand the cost of a unit of a cloud and provide the required level of cost transparency internally and to consumers.
Bill Irvine is a Principal Strategist with VMware Accelerate Advisory Services and is based in Colorado. This entry was posted in CloudOps, Operations Transformation and tagged Bill Irvine, cloud business management, IT service management, kai holthaus, khalid hakim, operations transformation, service definition, service owner on March 10, 2016 by Sarah Butler. Business leaders look at the cloud model and see new ways to accelerate innovation, create competitive advantage, and drive new business models. Never forget your history lessons.   Have you ever participated in a successful transformation project that didn’t factor in People, Process and Technology? Organizing for the cloud cannot be an afterthought in the formulation of an effective IT transformation strategy.
Chief among these critical organizational shifts is establishing a Cloud Business Management discipline. The Cloud Business Manager role  drives a new business management discipline within IT to lead a comprehensive cloud business management practice, leveraging investments in vRealize Business. The focus here is primarily to develop the cloud service-based cost model along with a repeatable service costing process for Cloud consumption. Included here are responsibilities for developing a cloud strategy roadmap, a cloud services marketing program, and liaison work among IT, Corporate Marketing, and Business Unit consumers of the cloud.
Here the responsibilities include defining SLA’s, ensuring delivery, and making cloud workload placement decisions based on the right economic factors to avoid shadow-IT situations. Responsibilities here include defining value metrics, continuous improvement reporting, and regular business performance reporting for key stakeholders. Develop a Cloud Services marketing strategy; offers and promotions to ensures cloud services consumption and value. The Cloud Business Manager helps IT deliver on cloud promises for the desired quality at the right cost, by ensuring tighter alignment and accountability between IT, Business and Finance.  This roles makes a significant contribution in the workload placement decision-making process, as well as hybrid cloud, cost takeout, application rationalization and bill-of-cloud.

Let us know if we can help you further define this role in your company.  And keep a look out for Part Two in this Cloud Business Management Series next month, where I cover the Cloud Business Strategy topic.
This entry was posted in CloudOps, IT Transformation, Operations Transformation and tagged Charlie McVeigh, cloud business management, Cloud Business Manager, khalid hakim, operations transformation, service owner on December 21, 2015 by Sarah Butler.
What is common to each of the historical phases that are described above?  Business units that consume IT services perceived that they could procure IT services and applications more quickly and at a lower cost than corporate IT organizations could provide them. Todays effective CIO is asking and seeking answers most of the following questions:  Can you tell me on the spot what your total cloud spend is, and, what that spend is comprised of? Let’s say that you’re the VP of Cloud — think through how you would justify your data center investments. What I would like to share with you today is a 6-month program (shown in the diagram below) to transform your cloud initiative into a successful robust cloud business management practice. Cloud Business Strategy Assessment – Evaluate the IT business operational maturity of an organization and compare with VMware recommended practices. Cloud Services Definition – A comprehensive methodology to define cloud services and their constituent components end-to-end. Cloud Services Costing – Understand Customer’s cloud services cost end-to-end and create a service-based cost allocation and classification strategy for Customer’s cloud services. Cloud Services Pricing – Help Customer set a cloud pricing strategy and propose rates for the various components and offerings. Cloud Services Marketing – Set up the cloud services marketing strategy including branding, marketing objectives, cloud service positioning, communications plan, value measurement, cultural considerations, and catalyst of change.
Cloud SLM and Contracts Management – A comprehensive Cloud Service Level Management process including SLA and OLA templates between Cloud Infrastructure and Tenant Operations teams and the consumer. Cost Optimization – Develop and execute a cloud cost optimization repeatable process that includes competitive analysis, benchmarking, public cloud comparison, and cost savings realization. Cloud Services Budgeting and Forecasting – Develop a cloud-service-based budgeting and forecasting process to enable a more efficient demand and supply chain supported by the vRealize Business Advance cost model. In our next blogs, we’ll cover the cloud business management components in greater details to help you plan for your Cloud Business Management (CBM) practice within your organization. IT services and applications gradually rely on cloud services that provide more flexibility and agility for IT providers to supply the value to the business on demand.
This entry was posted in CloudOps, IT Transformation, Operations Transformation, Thought Leadership, Uncategorized and tagged cloud business management, CloudOps, IT Financial Management, IT Services, IT transformation, ITBM, VMworld, vmworld 2015 on July 20, 2015 by Sarah Butler. If you are in the information technology business, the cloud is not only imperative but unavoidable. Cloud computing offers a real alternative to traditional infrastructure in terms of saving money.
All businesses, whether IT related or otherwise, must explore the possibility of migrating to the cloud.
Our articles are written to provide you with tools and information to meet your IT and cloud solution needs.
Sankarambadi Srinivasan, ‘Srini’, is a maverick writer, technopreneur, geek and online marketing enthusiast rolled into one. Google, AWS and Microsoft regularly dominate discussion about the latest and greatest in cloud. AWS EC2 came 11th, having suffered a total of 12 outages across Asia Pacific, Europe and the US that lasted just over two hours combined, but performed much better than some of its larger rivals. Of the 49 cloud compute services monitored by CloudHarmony Microsft Azure’s came in dead last, suffering 103 outages that incurred a total of nearly 43 hours of downtime (which still puts the platform’s availability at over 99.9 per cent). Late last year Azure experienced a wide-scale cloud outage that took down its own websites, Visual Studio Online, Sharepoint and Xbox live services. The results once again raise questions about the viability of public cloud platforms – particularly those offered by some of the more visible players in the market – for mission critical applications. CenturyLink has launched Runner, it’s new configuration management and orchestration service designed for hybrid and multi-cloud environments. We call the difference between what the IT department is being asked to do, and what it is able to do, the resources gap. Cloud server company ElasticHosts has announced its new model of container technology can adapt automatically to fit volatile shifts in demand for resource and bill clients accordingly.
We are all working toward an era of autonomics ? a time when machines not only automate key processes and tasks, but truly begin to analyse and make decisions for themselves.
SIGN UP TO OUR DAILY NEWS DIGESTReceive FREE Business Cloud news alerts straight to your inbox. SaaS for SMBs: The main meal, not the side saladWe know that telcos are well-placed to sell cloud services to small and medium-sized businesses.
STORM 360 Ayr is a Full I.T Solution Company - Web Design, SEO, eCommerce, Network Support, Computer Repairs and Digital Marketing. STORM 360 - Web Design, SEO, eCommerce, Network Support, Computer Repairs and Digital Marketing. Storm Cloud Back Up brings powerful online backup, cloud storage, collaboration and sharing features to your business. After continual issues with our IT systems at LOWMAC, we were introduced to STORM by a colleague. Everywhere we look, the cloud seems to be there - it’s like the industry is a film with the cloud on an overt product placement mission. It would be wrong to suggest every business, in every sector, is going to rip and replace what they’ve always had and go 100 per cent cloud. If you are still considering whether moving to the cloud is the way to go, here’s a fact for you: 80 percent of businesses adopting the cloud experienced improvement within 6 months of cloud computing adoption. The data they distilled might surprise you, and it's all packed neatly into the infographic below. Powered by its own proprietary technology, Mashable is the go-to source for tech, digital culture and entertainment content for its dedicated and influential audience around the globe. The key here being that more mature organizations provides higher levels of value to the IT organization and the business consumers of IT resources. Depending on your circumstances Cloud Computing can be a highly beneficial technology to either replace or complement solutions in your existing network. SOS is renowned for its professional technical experience, reliable services and first-class support. In today’s blog, the focus begins to shift to executing the strategy and laying out the foundations of a service-oriented and business-driven “operating model”. The service chart helps to visually understand the core components of a service and contributes when costing services.
This helps with understanding the customer business need and developing the most valuable solution possible. Transformation Consultant with VMware Operations Transformation Services and is based in Oregon. We still find that all too often, a critical aspect of harnessing the cloud is overlooked: the organizational impact of moving to the cloud model. This blog is the first in a four part series recommending specific Cloud Business Management roles and processes to consider. This enables the business consumers of the cloud to make the right economic decisions about where and how to run their workloads. Once you understand the economics of cloud workload placement, cloud marketing will drive users to that desired behavior.
The goal of the Cloud Business Management (CBM) service is to set up a cloud business management practice to enable effective, efficient, and agile business management of your cloud services. VMware will recommend possible strategies and propose a plan that best fits the organization IT and business models. Also, identify types of promotions and drivers of cloud services consumption and behavior impact.

However this change also introduce new challenges to manage a dynamic environment that needs to scale economically per consumer’s demand. Maybe it’s the pharmaceutical business or auto manufacturing, you are still dependent on technology.
One example is the pay-per-use model wherein the company is only charged for resources that it actually uses. But most might be surprised to learn that, based on data on the uptime of those cloud platforms, they don’t even make it into the top 10.
The outage has seemingly impacted every region except Australia, its latest availability zone addition, and has even briefly affected some of Microsoft’s own websites.
It’s easy to use making it suitable for everyone – from one man businesses up to larger enterprises. Simply install the Storm Cloud Back Up software on every computer in your business and it’ll work automatically in the background to backup everything on that computer to the cloud. That means your employees can use multiple computers and can take their work home with them if you wish.
In fact, Storm Cloud Back Up includes everything you need to setup your own FTP server in a fraction of the time of a traditional server and with dozens of extra features.
Has it really made operations "greener?" Why do most companies move into the cloud in the first place? Maybe it is more cost efficient to run temporary workloads in the public cloud than the private one.
Do you know your costs for services?  Do you engage in pricing strategies?  Are you marketing cloud services to incent user behavior? We pride ourselves on utilising our extensive technical knowledge to constantly improve the level of service provided to our clients. It is never intended to fully document all the areas above immediately, or establish all of the processes, as many organizations don’t have this all of this information available. The fact is, the transition to the cloud model requires an evolution in roles, skills, processes, and organizational structure. The right people, with the right skills, have to be in the right places and serve the right roles.
How can you use that type of information to optimize the cost of your existing and future operations?
The cloud model can facilitate the shift to a business focus for the entire IT hierarchy—from the top to the technical teams managing and delivering the cloud. Later, he sold his maiden venture and became head of an offshore Database administration company in Mumbai.
But of all the cloud storage platforms, HP’s recently launched OpenStack-based offering came out on top with no downtime. But to achieve the full business value of the cloud, companies need to put in place a more specialized and robust Cloud Business Management (CBM) practice.
You should understand the technology, because it’s not unlikely that your clients will demand some flavor of cloud sooner or later. Today a non-IT organization may not feel the need to use cloud computing, but their accountants and finance folks might be in need of a change. He moved on as Chief Technology Officer of one of the largest online entities, where he led consolidation of 300 online servers and introduced several Web 2.0 initiatives. The administrator can see all backed up files on all computers and you can easily restore files anytime using our restore software. If your people are still e-mailing files between themselves then there is a better way – try it today! IT should identify and define what cloud services would be offered to its consumers in order to truly drive a services-oriented and value-driven organization.
The service owner should establish a working draft, develop it to the point of release and then maintain in for its life as an active service offering. This experience will put you in good stead when you want to implement your software, application or utility in a cloud environment. Cost cutting across this spectrum of activities means finding new ways to optimize and save. You can share privately (we’ll send the recipient a secure link) or publicly with everyone. Our current IT support system is definitely meeting our needs, and we would recommend SOS March 2016Medical Services, Newcastle NSWOur client manager is brilliant and very likeable. Don’t you need closer monitoring to the quality of your delivery, such as continuous analysis and improvement?
Have you thought of aligning your efforts with the corporate marketing and promoting your cloud services value? IT companies have to understand both if they want to move into the next phase of technology. You can give every employee their own private space and you can create Team Folders that groups of employees work together on. 2015 SeptemberCommunity Service Provider, Newcastle NSWOur Client Manager's product knowledge is unreal and he is very clever. 2015 SeptemberCommunity Service Provider, Maitland NSWOur Client Manager is knowledgeable and very patient with me. We feel we are receiving value for money with the great service and we go through our Client Manager for everything we need. We deal with our Client Manager for everything and he always offers a resolution for anything that comes up. August 2015Fire & Rescue Equipment Supplier, Newcastle NSWOur Client Manager is a fantastic representative for SOS!
The most important thing is response time and we are definitely getting a great response whenever we need it from him.
August 2015Manufacturing Industry, Cardiff NSWOur Client Manager is great and very helpful.
He fixes any issues straight away, has really good knowledge and calls out to see us regularly.
The monthly reports are great and we are receiving value for money, especially if something breaks down. August 2015Community Transport Provider, Northmead NSWOur Client Manager is excellent with his service, he is on the ball, listens to our needs and is quick to resolve any problems. SOS did a great job when we were expanding and needed additional equipment and the system works very well. May 2015Transport Industry, Heatherbrae NSWWe are very happy with the service and our Client Manager always responds quickly to any problems we might encounter; we wouldn't have anyone else! Our Client Manager makes sure we have the right equipment for our needs and he understands our requirements. May 2015Renewable Energy Industry, Newcastle NSWOur Client Manager is by far the best person we have worked with from SOS.
We have total trust in our Client Manager to make sure we have everything we need for the business and we are receiving value for money from the service. April 2015Mechanical Contractor, Hunter Valley NSWOur Client Manager’s service and support is wonderful and he's slowly but surely teaching me some tricks.
The system is great and everything works as it should.  SOS are one of the companies I have no issues with, I don't know what I'd do without you! February 2015Electrical Contractor, Newcastle NSWOur Client Manager is wonderful with his support, product knowledge and problem resolution skills.

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