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The Curious Case of the Missing Workload

By Dave Scott, Solutions Director, NTT Com Managed Services

Migrating workloads to the cloud is now a significant enterprise theme. However, there is no single migration approach; instead, there are many.

Often, companies deploy new cloud-native or cloud-ready applications on the cloud, while keeping their traditional ones on-premises. This approach is changing, according to our recent whitepaper “Going Hybrid: Demand for Cloud and Managed Services Across Asia-Pacific", based on a 451 Research survey of more than 400 IT decision makers representing Asia-Pacific’s largest businesses across Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand.

The whitepaper noted that 31 percent still deployed new applications in the cloud. What is more telling, however, is that more than half are migrating existing applications, with 28 percent choose to lift and shift while the remaining 28 percent prefer to refractor and shift.

Migrating existing enterprise applications to the cloud can be complex. For starters, existing applications might not be designed for the cloud, and in many cases, licensing models might not support it. Other issues such as data security, regulatory compliance, and service level agreement (SLA) enforcement make migrating to the cloud challenging.

Every Workload Has Unique Desires

There is no single strategy for migrating all workloads. Every workload differs, even if they are from the same application vendor. It is because the data, business requirements, hardware dependencies and such vary across different companies, industries and countries.

It is why the whitepaper noted that many companies began their cloud migration journey with communications and productivity application workloads, before moving to more mission-critical applications.

Thirty-three percent of enterprises surveyed said that they migrated their email and productivity workloads, with enterprises resource planning (29 percent), security (28 percent), file and content storage (28 percent) and database and data warehousing (28 percent) being the next favorites.

In 2019 and into 2020, this will change. Forty-nine percent of enterprises surveyed said that they would begin moving CRM and sales & marketing applications to the cloud, followed by database and data warehousing (48 percent), networking (48 percent), file and content storage (47 percent) and enterprise resource planning (47 percent). In turn, this change will create different demands on the cloud environment.

Companies are also beginning to choose different clouds for their workloads. As a result, over 90 percent of APAC businesses said that they were adopting a multi-cloud approach. Such an approach allows companies to take advantage of the unique benefits of each cloud platform while addressing issues related to data sovereignty, security policies, latency-sensitivity, pricing structure and so on. However, it also makes cloud management immensely complex.

Going Hybrid with an MSP

A hybrid cloud can offer as an interim solution. One with a unified management system can help to manage the migration of workloads to different cloud environments and even back to on-premises locations. It provides an ideal staging ground for migrating any existing workloads, whatever the requirements.

Such a hybrid cloud architecture can also be an intermediary step in transformation or a means of accessing cloud benefits without having to refactor, the whitepaper added.

A hybrid cloud is only part of the answer. You also need to understand the multi-cloud impact on cloud security, data management, SLA management and more for a successful cloud migration. However, getting the right talents or knowledge can be difficult to acquire in today’s talent-challenged IT environment.

Which is why partnering with a managed services provider (MSP) offers a more sensible approach. It allows you to tackle the diverse challenges when preparing an application workload for cloud migration while giving you immediate access to knowledge and global best practices. More importantly, MSPs allow you to focus on the business, and not become bogged down by complex cloud management.

Example: Migrating SAP

Take, for instance, migrating SAP enterprise application workloads to the cloud. These run many businesses – a fact that SAP’s marketing slogans remind us regularly. It is often viewed as mission-critical software and requires considerable resources to maintain and run it.

Migrating SAP applications to the cloud allows you to scale and access huge reservoirs of compute resources almost immediately. However, it also requires both intimate knowledge about your on-premises infrastructure, the cloud environment you are migrating to and the SAP application you are currently migrating.

Professional MSP consultants can help. With their knowledge, you can reduce maintenance costs, minimize reputational risks by reducing unscheduled downtimes and identify potential areas of concern proactively. Besides transferring valuable SAP knowledge to your staff, they can develop the best mix of on-premises, near-shore and off-shore cloud services for your environment. More importantly, they empower your IT staff to focus on high-value business tasks.

MSPs can also provide the best upgrade path for new software or versions using a hybrid cloud strategy. Let’s say you are looking to upgrade to SAP HANA, the vendor's in-memory, column-oriented, relational database management system. It promises companies the speed they need to access, analyze and create actionable insights in real time but requires proper deployment. Incorrectly configured, SAP HANA can strain your enterprise resources.

SAP-certified MSPs can ensure SAP HANA is optimally deployed, maintained, updated and secure. They can also help you to reduce any budget overruns or unforeseen costs because of the complex management. Also, when there is a problem, they can assist by using global best practices to identify the root causes.

Overall, MSPs give you the freedom to choose how, where and when you want to start migrating your workloads to the cloud, effectively putting you in control of your business’s future.

Download The Whitepaper

Gain an in-depth analysis of the current Enterprise Hybrid Cloud Demand

Commissioned by:

NTT Communications solves the world’s technology challenges by helping enterprises overcome complexity and risk in their ICT environments with managed IT infrastructure solutions. These solutions are backed by our worldwide infrastructure, including industry leading, global tier-1 public and private networks reaching over 190 countries/regions, and more than 400,000m² of the world’s most advanced data center facilities. Our global professional services teams provide consultation and architecture for the resiliency and security required for your business success, and our scale and global capabilities are unsurpassed. Combined with NTT Data, NTT Security, NTT DOCOMO and Dimension Data, we are NTT Group.

VMware, a global leader in cloud infrastructure and business mobility, helps customers realize possibilities by accelerating their digital transformation journeys. With VMware solutions, organizations are improving business agility by modernizing data centers and integrating public clouds, driving innovation with modern apps, creating exceptional experiences by empowering the digital workspace, and safeguarding customer trust by transforming security. With 2016 revenue of $7.09 billion, VMware is headquartered in Palo Alto, CA and has over 500,000 customers and 75,000 partners worldwide.

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