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Cloud Options

Smitesh Shah, CTO, Avanse Financial Services

Headquartered in Mumbai, Avanse Financial Services Limited is a new age, fast growing education focused NBFC. The organization focuses on growth opportunities in the Consumer, MSME and Commercial Businesses while retaining its leadership position in Education Financing.

Customer and Customer Services should be at the fulcrum of any organizations. Digital enablement and paper-lite process is the key for providing better customer services, agility and turnaround time. Customers today have lot of option with digital enablement and internet at their disposal.

Cloud Overview
Ever-evolving technologies are transforming the way Data Centre operates. Most organizations have already invested heavily in Data Centre (DC). They are transforming by way of introduction of virtualization of servers, network and storage in their DCs. New Products Launch and innovation would require agility in deployment and traditional DCs are at disadvantage due to higher lead time in new servers in procurement and deployment.

Cloud computing is a practical approach to experience direct cost benefits and it has the potential to transform a data center from a capital-intensive set up to a variable priced environment.

The idea of cloud computing relies on a really elementary principle of ‘reusability of IT capabilities’. The distinction that cloud computing brings compared to ancient ideas of ‘grid computing’, ‘distributed computing’, ‘utility computing’, or ‘autonomic computing’ is to broaden horizons across organizational boundaries.

Forrester defines cloud computing as: “A pool of abstracted, highly scalable, and managed compute infrastructure capable of hosting end- customer applications and billed by consumption.”

Cloud Computing Models
Cloud Technology comes to advantage at such

time where server requirements can be met in matter of hours and pay per issue is advantageous. Cloud services are available as Infrastructure as a Service (IAAS) or Software as a Service (SAAS) or Platform as a Service (PAAS)

Cloud Options - Private v/s Public v/s Hybrid
Enterprises will prefer to deploy applications on Public, Non-Public or Hybrid clouds. Debate on public v/s private cloud is never ending. Scalability, Elasticity, Agility are some of the advantages of the public cloud model. However, compliance concerns due to multitenant structure and national boundaries limitations will tend organizations to opt for private cloud model. Private cloud provides single tenancy and all the advantages of cloud model but unlike public cloud on demand for peak loads and instant server requirements may pose some constraint.

Hence a mix of business requirement taking in to consideration business growth, scalability and already invested dollars in DC along with security and compliance would be a driving factor in choosing the options.

The key difference between public and private clouds highlighted here is obvious: Public clouds remove or reduce responsibility for datacenter facilities maintenance, networking, and hardware provisioning and maintenance. The Responsibility Factor makes the public cloud especially attractive for:
• Companies with no existing datacenter facilities for which datacenter excellence is a non-differentiating business factor;

• Companies that want to get out of the datacenter business, usually for manageability or cost concerns;

• Enterprises with heavy compliance requirements. Using a public cloud platform with pre-audited facilities for PCI, HIPAA, SOC 2, FISMA, etc. compliance provides an immediate benefit by removing an enterprise’s responsibility (and associated staffing and audit costs) for maintaining compliant corporate datacenters. Enterprises must sign a Business Associate Agreement (BAA) with the public cloud vendor.

• Complex public clouds require very specialized skills to orchestrate cloud resources in a way that is secure and highly available. In other words, there are many reasons to choose public cloud, but enterprises need to know that maintenance responsibilities are not inconsequential. Enterprises must then decide whether they want to manage their public cloud infrastructure themselves or outsource it to a managed cloud services provider. A managed cloud services provider can maintain the entire cloud infrastructure (web servers, application servers, load balancing, custom failover scripts)

In today’s digital world and ever evolving business needs, Cloud implementation as an option needs to be considered. Option of Public or Private Cloud basis the IT security needs, scalability, and speed to market is the need of the hour. Companies adapting to customer needs and digital transformation will remain in the race for future.

Deciding on the right mix of public, private, and on-premise architecture is complex and time consuming. Often the right solution depends as much or more on business requirements and roadblocks as on technological requirements. However, the organizational process of auditing, migrating, and optimizing the IT architecture will ultimately result in infrastructure that is more secure, available, and high performing.

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