The IT complexity evolution and why you should ditch all your Cloud tools
In the beginning, there was Software as a Service
Toward the end of the Client/Server Era of the technology timeline, something evolutionary began to happen. Technology was difficult to deliver. Technology had become overly complex and required highly skilled resources to design, build, and support solutions for businesses.
Business teams would become frustrated that technology timelines were measured in months or quarters. The technology processes and procedures were so complicated and time-intensive they began to cause a significant financial impact on the business. In the dawn of the Internet era, business consumers were looking elsewhere (outside of their organizations) for technology solutions. This Internet-based economy soon became known as Software as a Service, and then, Cloud.
Why is a business doing IT?
In the 2000s the competitive landscape in many market verticals was aggressive. At a time when the business needed to respond to changes in the marketplace, internal IT was not getting it done.
By the time 2010 rolled around; startups and small businesses were adopting AWS Clouds services for traditional technology solutions, like storage and compute. This on-demand pay-for-what-you-use model was initially less expensive and much faster. The smaller, more nimble organizations, were able to bring competitive solutions to the marketplace and challenge the established market share created by larger corporations.
Naturally, the business began to look outside of the internal IT organization for solutions and services. They heard it was faster and less expensive for the same or better level of service. The lack of governance and controls increased the time to market for these non-traditional business solutions. This was compounded by every business unit doing the same thing. The speed of change spurred more consumption. One large business went from an infrastructure procurement cycle of 3 weeks to 3 days by consuming cloud infrastructure. By the time the IT department got wind of what was going on, it was too late. Cloud success drove more adoption and IT didn’t have a say in whether to implement cloud infrastructure or not — they just had a say in how it got done.
The internal technology teams tried to do cloud and realized it was more complicated for larger companies. They were comfortable dealing with things like security, controls, and compliance. They quickly learned that identity and access control, authentication, and network security were difficult; this was just the tip of the iceberg. Additionally, the more complex it got, the more challenges and operational inconsistencies cropped up. It had to evolve in a significant way. Keeping the ways of the past and simply putting in the cloud wasn’t going to work.
The Over Correction
The technology organization took one on the chin and jumped back up. They began meeting with all the business stakeholders. They built MVP specifications that were based on the business needs and not focused on the technology. The days of building IT and they will come were over. The need to evolve was obvious and the old guard had to change their mindset or be removed.
IT began renegotiating all of the security governance, including network design and access controls. These relationships and processes needed to be re-established in order to appease the business. As a result, IT started to gain favor with the business owners and IT was saying “yes” in a way it hadn’t done in decades.
The adoption of cloud technologies was rapid. There were a lot of potholes to navigate and the pitfalls were dangerous. This explosive adoption wasn’t necessarily a good thing. With the support of the executive leadership teams, IT was either bypassing controls altogether or were following bare minimum best practices. They were making snap judgments and buying just about every software and service they could, to combat the threat from outside vendors.
The IT budget exploded! Not from the IaaS and PaaS service providers, but rather from all of the software licenses required to glue this together. The new public cloud sensation caught the keen eye of the financial officers. Gartner (Source: Gartner, January 2020) reports that software license cost significantly surpassed the infrastructure cost, and is growing 10% year-over-year.
The traditional software and tools that are used to operate and manage the data center aren’t equipped for the public cloud. These tools don’t understand elastic infrastructure or non-existent primary keys like Mac Addresses or IP Addresses. In the traditional world, these things don’t change. In the Cloud, they can change daily.
Software development organizations popped up everywhere. They jumped on this deficiency or that provider weakness and offered a single function to address the concern. These “feature tools” are not a platform — they go deep to solve a particular problem but failed to see the forest for the trees. An enterprise shouldn’t have to license 20 different tools from 20 different vendors and then have to piece together a version of the IT truth themselves.
Additionally, with the adoption of different public cloud providers, software license costs have doubled or tripled. Each business unit has its own, unique, software for just about everything. Financial reporting and service consumption as an example. There are single-function applications to do cost management, OS lifecycle management, compliance, best practices, backup and recovery, patch and configuration management just to name a few. All of these different tools are not integrated and struggle to deliver at scale.
There are missing tools as well. How do I organize my infrastructure the way I want to think about it instead of by AWS or Azure regions? Why can’t I schedule my infrastructure the way I do my calendar? How do I get to a best-practices state?
These are all great questions and while we don’t yet have all the answers, we do believe our approach is new, a novel (too early?) and based on experience — real experience from real IT experts running cloud for over a decade.
Don’t let tools manage your cloud.
Companies looking to solve some of the lingering problems associated with scaling public cloud adoption need more than just tools, they need Vega. Vega is a next-generation Cloud Management Platform that helps you organize your Cloud infrastructure in the way that best fits the makeup of your IT organization, simplify scale deployments, and implement optimization recommendations in real-time — saving you an average of 20 hours per month, 50% of your support tool software licensing and 35% on your monthly Cloud bill. We think that’s a winning combination!
What is Vega?
We are a team of Cloud professionals who have designed, built, and managed public cloud infrastructure for the last decade. You won’t hear us talk about our software as Artificial Intelligence or Machine Learning. Sure, we use the latest technology appropriately but what’s more important here is smart design and implementation by craftsmen (and women) who know the pitfalls to avoid and can help you use the technology like an engineer would prefer — effectively and efficiently.