• May 29, 2015

Is Sprawl Undermining Your Technology Strategy?

By Stacy Cleveland, Vice President, Global Practices, U.S. Public Sector, Hewlett Packard Enterprise

A Cloud Broker Can Empower Your Organization and Help Control the Chaos

Consolidation has long been a pivotal objective in many organizations’ technology strategies. Yet, over the last several years, careful efforts to establish standards and minimize redundant applications have faced increasing challenges because of the availability of cloud-based alternatives. While cloud technology has proven beneficial, it has also spread out resources and processes. Organizations now face IT sprawl, a tumult of different vendors, assorted platforms and applications, varied pricing, and frustrated employees—with little knowledge of security requirements—capable of purchasing cloud resources with a credit card.

Simultaneously, IT executives are scrambling for viable ways to operate systems more efficiently in an effort to free up resources for transformational initiatives—like mobility and analytics—that will help yield business results. Cloud offers many advantages in this situation if some control can be maintained over the enterprise.

Your Technology Strategy | HP Enterprise ForwardCloud Brokering: Reimagining IT

Imagine a system that provides instant insight into, and control over, all of your IT assets—from public cloud to elements of traditional IT, such as mainframes and server farms. A system that empowers you to organize and harness these assets to generate business solutions for employees, citizens, and customers alike.

Enter the cloud broker. Through a broker, you can orchestrate your hybrid IT resources while providing transparent cost information, smooth acquisition of services, and the ability to easily ensure that your critical data and process assets are managed at security levels required by your enterprise. The result is a dramatically increased security posture, plus cost savings, efficiencies, and capacity.

Take, for example, that the typical large organization operates systems on mainframes, servers, and private and public clouds. It spends upward of 70 percent of its IT budget maintaining existing applications and platforms. By establishing a cloud broker as a key mechanism for enabling transformation, the organization can: enact a single catalog of approved services, guide users to ordering the right level of service for their workloads, and ensure it has end-to-end visibility on operational performance and cost. Fundamentally, a cloud broker performs three functions:

  • aggregation: assembling services ranging from cloud, mailbox, and phone to actual equipment into a customized catalog
  • intermediation: choosing services that best fit client needs
  • arbitration: selecting the best provider at the best price

Charting the Course

Effectively providing these services requires a workload analysis and optimization strategy for which the broker provider:

  • inventories and analyzes workloads and applications
  • assesses security requirements
  • determines workload life cycles (Is an application new or is it nearing end of life?)
  • establishes the accessibility requirements of specific applications
  • determines the most effective platform for each workload category
  • develops an overall strategy for transforming the current technology environment

The broker provider then establishes a cloud broker system that will enable the execution of the transformation strategy and assist in effectively managing the environment on an ongoing basis. The broker will aid in providing operational metrics that can measure progress in the transformation and also help avoid the sprawl associated with an ungoverned migration to cloud-based solutions.

The impact to your business plan can be considerable. Cloud brokering streamlines service acquisition, service performance management, and financial control—all with end-to-end visibility, insight, and security. Goodbye, chaos. Hello, empowered enterprise.