Coming back from a long Memorial Day weekend, it was interesting to see the IT industry bursting with news. One story that has been trending for quite some time, and has really accelerated in the last few weeks, is the move organizations are making to Managed Private Clouds. Like virtualization, and the public cloud before it – the Managed Private Cloud feels a bit like technological gravity. We all seem drawn to it one way or another. Is it inevitable that we eventually get pulled in? for some workloads? for all workloads?. And for good reason – there’s some strong attractors to implementing a Managed Private Cloud strategy:
- Focus on core growth initiatives: All organizations want to focus on their core business initiatives (innovation). Managed Private Cloud allows organizations to free up resources and leave the management of IT (and applications) to the vendor.
- Shared risk model: For years, we’ve have had to completely own the risk of our IT. At the same time, technological risk (downtime) and financial (cost) risk have continued to grow along with IT complexity. The risk profile has certainly changed with public cloud models, but is now taken to another level with the Managed Private Cloud. The Managed Private Cloud fundamentally changes how organizations experience IT. No longer do companies need to host IT, manage IT, or even own IT. Complexity is less of a concern. Risk is shared.
- Flexibility (of resources) and control (access of data): Public clouds have historically provided unmatched flexibility of resources compared to legacy IT purchases. The legacy model puts X number of resources on the floor – whether you use them or not. The cloud model provides for flexibility based on usage. Very different from a cost perspective. The same is true for control – but in this case, the legacy IT environment (may) have the advantage. With Managed Private Cloud, your data can physically reside in YOUR datacenter (but ideally with option of hosted/offsite location). Varying levels of control are key. With public cloud – the access points are not always clear. The Managed Private Cloud can bring the benefits of both private and public clouds (flexibility of resources and control of resources/data) to IT.
- Simplicity: The sophisticated vendor can now provide end to end application delivery. Consulting, infrastructure, implementation, integration, management – all in a consolidated view. Simplicity never goes out of style.
HDS has long been a premier provider of managed services. We have continued to evolve our offerings beyond storage into cloud compute as a service, and now, most recently, we made a big move into the managed application space. We are accelerating “up the stack” in terms of delivering IT value. Acquiring oXya corporation has enabled HDS to tell a “One Stop Shop” story for application deployment – in particular, SAP. Again, simplicity never goes out of style and has always been HDS’ number one goal for our customers. We are happy to say it was met with strong enthusiasm from the press.
We have also seen our industry peers move into this space as well. It's really no surprise, because it's at the application level that we all interact with technology that can enable smarter, more efficient, and better uses. This clearly validates HDS’ short term strategy and our long term plans of delivering more value to our customers – and consequently, enabling our customers to drive more value from their applications.
From our perspective, the Managed Private Cloud means a higher level of service and quality – and a focus on what matters most: the business. We are delivering customer/business outcomes first – this is not a faster, bigger, better discussion - this is a business and SLA driven discussion. First, (again) from our perspective, with the Managed Private Cloud, HDS is building application and customer specific cloud offerings on or off-prem with our own datacenters. Located where you want for your business, managed how you want for your business, procured how you want for your business (OPEX or CAPEX or hybrid).
In addition, with our oXya acquisition, we gained a proven team with tremendous experience and synergies for one of the most business critical applications, SAP. oXya has been running SAP environments for nearly two decades – hundreds of them. Combine that with HDS’ rich history of building robust application infrastructures, delivering expert implementation and support services, and most recently, shifting towards information services and solutions – and you have a recipe for IT application evolution. With oXya, we have application “reach” that few of our peers can claim. You can bet that we will continue to “reach” in this space…
The bottom line is, the Managed Private Cloud is so important to our app-centric world because the services value goes well beyond implementation, support, and basic run services. It is providing simplified IT all the way up the stack, reduced risk, and greater value at the application level. The benefits are many – and for many organizations, the Managed Private Cloud provides just the right singular IT customer/vendor partnership. You will likely see many more announcements in the near term in this space. This may well be the next frontier of IT delivery - if you haven’t felt the pull of the Managed Private Cloud yet – just read the news.