Building a private cloud is a complex process
For many organizations, building a private cloud is a complex process. Just a few years ago, they were being told that virtualizing their data centre would turn it into a private cloud. While they gained some performance improvements and saved on some CAPEX, they have never achieved the savings or business agility that they expected.
Having experienced these challenges building a private cloud, today’s task of integrating public cloud projects to build a hybrid cloud solution has been even more challenging. Part of the problem has been the poor implementation of tooling by cloud providers and the lack of federated security and management tools but these are not the only issue.
Financially, the stress on enterprise IT department budgets mean that they lack the funding to understand cloud. They also lack the necessary skills to manage complex integration projects across delivery platforms. Many of them already use trusted partners such as system integrators to help them through this. When moving to cloud, it makes sense, therefore, for the system integrator to be part of that new integration project.
The role of SI’s building private cloud
The SI, or Systems Integrator, brings an understanding of the complexity of large projects. Their business model is built around helping customers understand multiple platforms and to deploy their IT infrastructure where it can be most effective.
In the cloud, the system integrator has an opportunity to not only extend their existing relationships with enterprise customers but to add a new dimension. Cloud helps glue different platforms together, and allows the system integrator the opportunity to build a platform tailored to their customers.
Integration between platforms, the need for federated management and security tools, along with the ability to deliver on industry standards plays to the strength of the system integrator. However, these are not the only areas where the system integrator adds significant value. Systems integrators are able to deliver cloud-based SLAs to enterprise customers.
My paper “How to move to the cloud” is a useful guide to a successful migration to the cloud. It’s available to download here.