Enterprise Cloud: One Foot In, One Foot Out
Nearly 10 years ago I wrote a No Jitter post titled, "Maybe You Should Get Your Head in the Clouds." So, after experience with running Active Directory Domain Controller from multiple sites, mass virtualization, numerous hardware and network failures, significant disruptions from AT&T and Amazon Web Services outages laced with distributed denial-of-service events, and the ongoing, never-ending flood of technology changes, where are you now?
Everybody has their own idea of two cans and a string. Dive into this for a moment, and consider the layers of infrastructure that we all rely and reside on, because it isn't just one but many. From a business perspective, this is inefficient. There are too many middlemen, and this translates to high costs, less reliability, and less effective integration. "Network" socialization is immature, and, if anything, this should be more than exciting to those in the VC world who are funding cloud technologies.
A friend said to consider this question: Has our government encouraged cooperation for the sake of interoperability to the same extent as it has discouraged monopolistic behavior?
Circling back to the many layers of infrastructures that exist in our world of networking, business owners, C-level executives, and VCs all know that the shell game of moving things around can positively impact the bottom line when executed properly. They also know what happens in efforts that fail.
The "cloud" is here, as are many legacy embedded solutions that will remain intact for some time. There are motivations for moving applications and services to the cloud, and whether these efforts are justified or misguided, misplaced or aligned, or simply out of necessity to solve a problem or meet a business need, what remains as key questions should guide the right reasons to move anything to the cloud.
The old question that every business must ask is: Is this essential? Follow this by asking "why" three, four, or five times or more, as Taiichi Ohno, former EVP of Toyota, taught and influenced businesses and manufacturing processes. The questions answered honestly and openly will lead IT to discover root cause failures and breakdowns in processes. These together are the essence of sine qua non, or that which is essential, and taken together, the journey to the cloud will improve.
Generational changes occur over years, not in self-proclaimed sales cycles of making changes and improvements to a product or service.
Businesses have one foot in and one foot out of the proverbial cloud because there is no solution that meets all needs. Ask the right questions, enough times, and IT will improve --- and so will your bottom line.
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