20 Feb 2017

IT optimisation: Finding the right platform for your workloads

These days we have a choice of infrastructure platforms on which to run our production systems and greatly improve business continuity. IT optimisation is all about maximising the efficiency of your systems so you can move as fast as you need, adapt to change whenever it is called for, and drive solutions for your customers at the core of your own businesses.

 

Moving away from traditional models

Traditional infrastructure is giving way to the cloud to host applications and workloads for rapid on demand delivery, giving you the ability to innovate, compete and grow faster. Managed cloud solutions enable you to scale your requirements as they change and only pay for the resources and features that you need. The traditional model of running software as an application that has been installed to a desktop, is being replaced more and more by Software as a Service. This model is consumed by end users via a modern browser or mobile application and is usually paid as an operational rather than a capital expense. 

 

Hybrid IT environments

Cloud adoption is not an all or nothing decision. Businesses can have the best of both the traditional on-premise and Cloud worlds provided the upfront planning is performed. The three main infrastructure platforms in the market today are; on-premise servers, public cloud and managed private cloud. Hybrid IT leverages a number of infrastructure platforms, placing workloads where they perform best, all things considered. It’s important to thoroughly assess your applications and business requirements to determine which workloads deliver better performance, ROI and user satisfaction in the cloud and which should stay on-premise. For example, email, application testing and development, CRM tools, business analytics and ERP tend to work best in the cloud where they are centrally accessed and can scale quickly, while high data volume transaction applications such as CAD software, may be better suited to an on-premise server or at least cached locally for fast performance.

It’s important to consider the lifecycle of your existing infrastructure when planning a hybrid environment. Make sure to keep your recently purchased on premise servers running in order to maximise your investment. Consider ‘as a Service’ platforms when decommissioning old infrastructure, to avoid large capital expenses. If no workloads are deemed ready to move to the Cloud then consider utilising the Cloud as your Backup and Disaster Recovery target.

 

Cloud computing models

Public cloud platforms and services, like Microsoft Azure, are a growing collection of cloud-based products that include virtual servers (IaaS), analytics, database services, mobile telemetry, networking, storage, and web. Cloud computing platforms help you move faster, achieve more and save money over time. Microsoft Azure deployments, for example, can be integrated with existing infrastructure, either on-premise or in service provider the cloud. 

 

Managed Private Cloud

Managed Private Cloud is a fully-outsourced computing infrastructure model. It is suitable and often required when business wants to run applications in a tightly managed environment, have access to experts and potential configure requirements to optimise application performance. Rather than buying servers, software licenses, network equipment and data centre space separately, you can buy all of them bundled as a managed service.

IaaS eliminates the effort involved in in deploying new servers and services while enabling on-demand capacity and performance increases in a tailored solution. Its pay-per-use model means IaaS is an operating expense rather than a capital expense.

 

Software as a Service

One of the quickest and easiest ways of moving workloads to the cloud is through SaaS. Microsoft lead the way in SaaS model applications, with Office 365. Office 365 brought together Microsoft’s Office suite and online services into “an always-up-to-date cloud service”. The service delivers Office, SharePoint Online, Exchange Online, and OneDrive for Business, Skype for Business, iPad versions of the Office apps and Yammer integration, all together in the cloud. Plans include features and price points tailored to meet the needs of all sized businesses. Brennan IT offered managed Office 365 plans to suit your specific business needs. 

 

Choosing the Right Service Provider

All good managed service providers and system integrators should have expertise in both cloud and on-premises systems. They can offer unbiased advice on what systems are the better cloud candidates, help with the migration and manage the services for you so that you can get out of operations. Brennan IT are experts at helping to migrate your data to a cloud platform with minimal disruption, and provide ongoing monitoring, management and proactive notifications to reduce the risk of downtime.  

Roadmapping your IT environment is crucial to understanding your specific business needs and matching it to your hybrid infrastructure. Brennan IT offer strategy workshops that analyze your current IT and business drivers and recommend on the best combination of IT platforms. 

 

If you would like Brennan IT to help you determine which IT optimisation strategy is right for you, visit http://www.brennanit.com.au or contact us on 1300 500 000.

 

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