One of the problems that arises during virtualisation is virtual stall as management tipping points emerge between the different stages, according to CA Technologies vice-president of strategic solutions, Andi Mann.
“About 65 to 70 per cent of servers in Australia have been virtualised but it’s not just about the numbers. It’s about what you are doing with them – how well are you moving along this maturity curve,” Mann told delegates at CA World Expo 2011 in Sydney.
He was speaking at a session on building an effective, pragmatic and reliable cloud.
According to him, there are many factors that stand in the way of automisation and reaching dynamic IT. They include: politics, visibility, staffing, skill levels, ROI improvements, dealing with the business, compliance issues, assurance and security.
A recent study by Gartner found that technology is only fairly low in the list of barriers in delivering a broad, effective cloud. It showed that some of the more important challenges include management, operations, finance, chargeback, culture, politics, people and process.
“It said that essentially, technology is easy but people are hard and the process is hard. That’s why it’s not all about the software,” Mann said. It was about being able to deliver solutions which manage people and process together, he said.
Some research by the Aberdeen Grouphas resulted in statistics that show businesses that have adopted the cloud technologies well are delivering savings of 16 per cent or more, while those without a plan and do not perform well are increasing costs.
Unisys Asia-Pacific director of datacentre transformation and cloud, Paul Allen, said it is the organisational change process that scares people and brings about risks.
“Most CEOs and CIOs say – I don’t want my business running by itself. I still want human intervention,” he said.
According to Allen, there is no use automating an old process as businesses have to look at how the process is into business change. He also added that there is no use in provisioning infrastructure or applications quicker if the business is not ready to take advantage of it.
“So where do I put my investment? A key principle in cloud is that each improvement you make should fund the next step in cloud – so you shouldn’t be writing up big cheques without a plan on how you are to recruit the investment,” he said.
Allen stated IT only exists to support the business value chain and it is important to align that business value chain with the underlying IT physics consisting of servers, networks, etc.
He concluded by indicating that if businesses plan, understand their business value chain, the requirements of the business and the applications that support it, they will be able to look at what they can procure externally and invest in internally.