SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Carmen Gonzalez, Liz McMillan, Kevin Jackson

Related Topics: Cloud Expo, Java, Linux, Virtualization, Security, SDN Journal

Cloud Expo: Article

Outpacing Your Competition with a Cloud Services Brokerage

One of the biggest advantages of cloud computing is the ability to respond quickly to opportunity

Every company worries about competition. When I ran a large enterprise solutions organization, I took steps every day to ensure we were outpacing the competition. Frequently this involved making "build" vs "buy" decisions for the various product parts or services we needed to drive our business. In each discussion, I would ask my staff: "What is going to help us move faster or be more efficient? What will help us beat our competition?"

In today's business world, IT is a significant driver of competitive advantage and the same considerations of "build" vs "buy" apply to IT, just as they do to other parts of the business.

Imagine the following exchange between a Line of Business executive and CIO of a company:

LOB executive: "We need this new business application to be launched before the end of summer to take advantage of back-to-school spending."

CIO: "That's less than six months away. We've looked at your requirements and we can have the solution built and operating close to back-to-school time."

LOB Exec: "Close to? Exactly when?"

CIO: "For sure, before Thanksgiving."

LOB Exec: [rolls his eyes] "Too late. We'll be the only player in the market without an offer"

CIO: "How do you know that? It will take time for others as well."

LOB Exec: "Not necessarily. With cloud services brokerage, you can design and match the requirements of your business application against the capabilities of multiple cloud providers as well as private cloud to determine best fit. You are basically doing a build vs buy analysis and if speed is important as it is, you BUY a solution for almost immediate deployment. You get a Bill of Materials before you decide and use it to track actual spend versus plan."

CIO: "We all want things sooner, but don't you prefer the comfort of knowing that it is in-house and fully compliant?"

LOB Exec: "Who said anything about not being compliant. We can make sure any solution we deploy includes services like application load balancing, security, and back-up and recovery to be compliant. They are all part of the criteria for matching the best fit solution."

What we can't lose sight of is that IT is an enabler to a higher priority responsibility - making the right business decision to outpace the competition. Sometimes it is BUILD, but sometimes it will be BUY. A Cloud Services Brokerage is all about streamlining the Cloud "Buy" process to take the risk and complexity out of cloud consumption. Cloud consumption is the consumerization of IT. Like all consumerization processes, cloud consumption is increasingly about the user experience and less about the operational details. Consumers - Line of Business - just want cloud to work predictably and responsively. Their business is not IT; they are focused on being the best bank, manufacturer or consumer goods company.

One of the biggest advantages of cloud computing is the ability to respond quickly to opportunity. The challenge then is how to choose intelligently among the many cloud choices to match capabilities to your needs. Cloud Services Brokers enable enterprises to normalize evaluation across providers, match provider capabilities against workload requirements, aggregate and procure multiple services to create a complete solution, and control and benchmark actual spend-versus-plan. A company's growing cloud spend are random decisions to remain competitive.

As a result, enterprises can align the consumption experience with the businesses' requirements so all IT spend, public or private, is optimal, repeatable, controllable and compliant. And best of all, the LOB and CIO are aligned on being the best bank, manufacturer or consumer goods company that is outpacing their competition.

More Stories By Brad Anderson

Brad Anderson, President and Chief Operating Officer at Gravitant, is a highly accomplished senior executive with more than 25 years of experience in the IT industry. Prior to Gravitant, he was the President of the Enterprise Solutions Group at Dell, which he grew to more than $12B in revenue. Under his leadership, Dell transformed its enterprise business from an infrastructure manufacturer to an enterprise solutions provider across compute, storage, networking and cloud computing. Prior to Dell, Brad was Senior Vice President at Hewlett

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Latest Stories
IoT is still a vague buzzword for many people. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, discussed the business value of IoT that goes far beyond the general public's perception that IoT is all about wearables and home consumer services. He also discussed how IoT is perceived by investors and how venture capitalist access this space. Other topics discussed were barriers to success, what is new, what is old, and what th...
Security can create serious friction for DevOps processes. We've come up with an approach to alleviate the friction and provide security value to DevOps teams. In her session at DevOps Summit, Shannon Lietz, Senior Manager of DevSecOps at Intuit, will discuss how DevSecOps got started and how it has evolved. Shannon Lietz has over two decades of experience pursuing next generation security solutions. She is currently the DevSecOps Leader for Intuit where she is responsible for setting and driv...
Dale Kim is the Director of Industry Solutions at MapR. His background includes a variety of technical and management roles at information technology companies. While his experience includes work with relational databases, much of his career pertains to non-relational data in the areas of search, content management, and NoSQL, and includes senior roles in technical marketing, sales engineering, and support engineering. Dale holds an MBA from Santa Clara University, and a BA in Computer Science f...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CodeFutures, a leading supplier of database performance tools, has been named a “Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. CodeFutures is an independent software vendor focused on providing tools that deliver database performance tools that increase productivity during database development and increase database performance and scalability during production.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is rapidly in the process of breaking from its heretofore relatively obscure enterprise applications (such as plant floor control and supply chain management) and going mainstream into the consumer space. More and more creative folks are interconnecting everyday products such as household items, mobile devices, appliances and cars, and unleashing new and imaginative scenarios. We are seeing a lot of excitement around applications in home automation, personal fitness,...
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to evolve the way the world does business; however, understanding how to apply it to your company can be a mystery. Most people struggle with understanding the potential business uses or tend to get caught up in the technology, resulting in solutions that fail to meet even minimum business goals. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO / President / Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., showed what is needed to leverage the IoT to transform your business. ...
Things are being built upon cloud foundations to transform organizations. This CEO Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo, moderated by Roger Strukhoff, Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo conference chair, addressed the big issues involving these technologies and, more important, the results they will achieve. Rodney Rogers, chairman and CEO of Virtustream; Brendan O'Brien, co-founder of Aria Systems, Bart Copeland, president and CEO of ActiveState Software; Jim Cowie, chief scientist at Dyn; Dave Wagstaff, VP ...
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
Vormetric on Wednesday announced the results of its 2015 Insider Threat Report (ITR), conducted online on their behalf by Harris Poll and in conjunction with analyst firm Ovum in fall 2014 among 818 IT decision makers in various countries, including 408 in the United States. The report details striking findings around how U.S. and international enterprises perceive security threats, the types of employees considered most dangerous, environments at the greatest risk for data loss and the steps or...
Storage administrators find themselves walking a line between meeting employees’ demands to use public cloud storage services, and their organizations’ need to store information on-premises for security, performance, cost and compliance reasons. However, as file sharing protocols like CIFS and NFS continue to lose their relevance, simply relying only on a NAS-based environment creates inefficiencies that hurt productivity and the bottom line. IT wants to implement cloud storage it can purchase a...
Cloud Technology Partners on Wednesday announced it has been recognized by the Modern Infrastructure Impact Awards as one of the Best Amazon Web Services (AWS) Consulting Partners. Selected by the editors of TechTarget's SearchDataCenter.com, and by votes from customers and strategic channel partners, the companies acknowledged by the Modern Infrastructure Impact Awards represent the top providers of cloud consulting services for AWS including application migration, application development, inf...
“We help people build clusters, in the classical sense of the cluster. We help people put a full stack on top of every single one of those machines. We do the full bare metal install," explained Greg Bruno, Vice President of Engineering and co-founder of StackIQ, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 15th Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Software AG and Wipro Ltd. have announced a joint solution platform for streaming analytics that provides real-time actionable intelligence for the Internet of Things (IoT) market. “The key to successfully addressing the IoT market is the ability to rapidly build and evolve apps that tap into, analyze and make smart decisions on fast, big data”, said John Bates, Global Head of Industry Solutions and CMO, Software AG. To address the huge market potential created by streaming analytics in conj...
"People are a lot more knowledgeable about APIs now. There are two types of people who work with APIs - IT people who want to use APIs for something internal and the product managers who want to do something outside APIs for people to connect to them," explained Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at SOA Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"Blue Box has been around for 10-11 years, and last year we launched Blue Box Cloud. We like the term 'Private Cloud as a Service' because we think that embodies what we are launching as a product - it's a managed hosted private cloud," explained Giles Frith, Vice President of Customer Operations at Blue Box, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.