With the growing influence of the cloud, there is a rapid shift in the way today’s IT Infrastructure is deployed and managed. As the complexity of this arrangement keeps increasing, so does the need for developing robust infrastructure management strategies.
Organizations that undertake comprehensive planning and chalk out a clear road map for their IT infrastructure needs will always enjoy a competitive edge. After the phase of planning comes the uphill task of implementing the roadmap and removing any bottlenecks along the journey.
Let’s discuss a few vital infrastructure trends and how organizations can align them effectively with those trends.
Hybrid Digital Infrastructure
Today’s IT infrastructure is generally a mix of on premises and Cloud Based Solutions. At times, the decision to retain some critical components of the data in house is for obvious security related concerns. Another impediment to fully switching to Cloud Solutions can be integration and compatibility related bottlenecks.
Most importantly, an organization should devise its unique architectural mix. It should involve questions like which architecture to deploy in the first place. Will it be fully on-premises, hybrid or fully cloud based? Of these alternatives, the hybrid architecture will be the trickiest.
If an organization opts in favor of a hybrid solution, the next question will be about which processes to maintain on-premises and which ones will be shifted over to the cloud. A good yardstick for this decision is that business critical data and processes should preferably be maintained in house.
So far as productivity related processes are concerned, they may conveniently be migrated to the cloud. Rather in most cases, the flexibility offered by cloud solutions will act as a catalyst for higher productivity and workforce continuity. This move will also result in reducing some fixed expenditures.
Disaster Recovery and Hybrid Infrastructure
A sound mechanism for disaster recovery is becoming a norm rather than an exception. Now, the demand for a failsafe Disaster Recovery Infrastructure is being voiced from none other than the customers of an entity. Some strategic customers may not even start a formal business relationship unless they are assured of a robust Disaster Recovery Solution.
With increasing reliance on the cloud, Disaster Recovery concerns start getting more serious as a lot of business processes have been outsourced to a Cloud Service Provider (CSP). It is imperative for organizations to hold maximum sway over the Disaster Recovery site and related protocols.
With IT becoming an enabler for more and more business processes, the trend of automation is on the rise. Although automation sounds fascinating and efficient as compared to the human element, it is not true for all processes. The classical example is that of tech giant Google that does not entirely rely on its super evolved algorithms.
On the contrary, the human element is also used to ascertain the validity and legitimacy of certain intricate processes such as its proprietary Ad-Sense Program. So, an organization’s automation strategy should be a balanced mix of both automated and human managed processes to get the best results.
Evolving the DevOps Ecosystem
DevOps can be defined as the automation of processes between software development and IT teams. Firstly, it is more or less a constant feature of any organization’s processes. Secondly, it involves a constant loop of development, testing, feedback and debugging of the productivity applications or software.
Previously, this process was quite decentralized and the level of coordination between DevOps teams was not ideal. This created compatibility challenges as optimizing one process often affected or derailed another business critical process. This was more of a “back to square one” type of situation.
What organizations need to do now is to centralize their DevOps at the organizational level. In this way, when any infrastructure related changes are being made to any process, the DevOps team will have a bird’s eye view of each area or process that is likely to be influenced by any change.
This will greatly streamline and accelerate the otherwise sluggish DevOps initiatives across the organization. Secondly, a well-documented initiative will serve as a torch bearer for any future initiatives to improve or innovate a business critical process.
Dispersed Infrastructure and Data
As organizations increasingly migrate to the cloud, the data and physical infrastructure are getting more dispersed than ever. An organization’s data may be stored in a Cloud Service Provider’s (CSP) data center in Singapore while its operations may be in Taiwan.
Although this physical gap is bridged with today’s lightning fast data transmission technologies but if the organization’s own network is lagging behind, it is bound to create severe efficiency issues. In situations where the data of an organization is physically dispersed, its network must be up to the task to handle the extra load.
Internet of Things (IoT) and Cyber Security
Consider the example of a home security company that gives a real-time video feed to the home owner on his smartphone. The three most obvious devices involved in this loop are a surveillance camera, Security Company’s recording and data transmitting apparatus and the customer’s smartphone.
With data flowing across so many different devices and platforms, cyber security becomes a nightmare. The more an organization relies on the IoT to deliver its product or service, the more priority must be accorded to Cyber Security at every tier. In this case, merely securing the company’s internal network would not suffice.
Challenges of a Distributed Infrastructure
In cases where an organization relies on both in house and cloud infrastructures, the challenges related to security and maintenance of the network become highly elevated. It is often said that everybody’s responsibility is in fact no one’s responsibility.
Therefore, the responsibility of each party (organization and CSP) must be clearly and unequivocally laid down in terms of security and maintenance. CSPs are now offering even in house cloud infrastructures to large customers and this responsibility outline becomes ever more important in such a scenario.
The end customer of any product or service is the ultimate judge of how it’s actually doing. Today’s IT applications and solutions deliver a near perfect user experience. This has made the end user expect perfection in every solution, which is a big ask.
Organizations that are into providing IT based products or services should now shift their development goals and perfection is now the rule rather than exception. This can only be achieved if each solution is subjected to rigorous testing in the most challenging conditions.
Proliferation of IT based Solutions
It is often said that in creative environments, an aim for producing quantity will ultimately hamper the quality. This cannot be truer for IT based solutions we call applications or programs. Most IT companies appear to be in a rat race to roll out as many solutions as possible in the least amount of time.
In this quest, IT companies may even disregard the basic question of whether they have the requisite skills and expertise to undertake this endeavor. The resultant solution is seldom up to the mark and instead of optimizing a process, it ends up impairing it.
Organizations need to come out of this obsession with quantity and focus on producing quality instead. A single top quality IT solution will go a long way to ensure the profitability and sustainability of a solution provider, rather than dishing out countless substandard solutions.
Future of Networking Solutions
There is a fundamental shift in the priorities for today’s networking solutions. The latest solutions need to be geared towards simplicity, efficiency and flexibility. Cyber Security is and always will remain an integral differentiating factor for any IT and network based solution.
Also Read: Why is dinCloud the best VDI solution?
The IT infrastructure of most organizations will have to accommodate an increasing ratio of mobile workers. Today’s productivity is gauged by quantifiable output of an employee, rather than physical location or the number of hours spent at the office premises.
Some of the added benefits of a mobile workforce are higher motivation, improved continuity and better employee retention rates. Organizations can tap this immense potential by leveraging the power of a fully productive mobile workforce.
Also Read: How to Optimize Your Mobile Workforce?
IT trends are changing and evolving at such an immense pace that it is difficult to even keep track of all the developments. Nonetheless, it is imperative that organizations remain abreast of all the shifts in trends that are unique to their industry and align with them accordingly.