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Leveraging CloudOps to Thrive, Optimize, and Succeed on the Cloud

Rachit Panigrahi • December 22, 2021
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Cloud computing has been one of the breakthrough technologies of the modern world. With the pandemic disrupting businesses worldwide, the focus on the adoption of cloud computing has been accelerating at a massive pace. Cloud infrastructure is more scalable, more reliable, offers a pay-as-you-go option, and provides on-demand services thereby making it superior to on-premises infrastructure.

However, not everything is picture-perfect, and enterprises are still apprehensive about efficiently & optimally operating on the cloud. There have been numerous instances of failed cloud implementations & operations. In my experience of helping clients build strong cloud operations and FinOps strategies, I have come across some of the below challenges faced by organizations operating on the public cloud:

  • Cloud Sprawl– Uncontrolled proliferation of resources due to the lack of visibility or control over the cloud resources.
  • Lack of standardization & IT controls – It is important that rules and best practices are enforced so that standardization is maintained across the cloud resources.
  • Cost overrun– A lot of enterprises overshoot their IT budget due to uncontrolled & unforeseen cloud expenses.
  • Lack of multi-cloud orchestration– Though a multi-cloud strategy can have numerous benefits, it comes with additional operational overheads. If proper orchestration is not configured, a multi-cloud strategy may fail.
  • Inadequate Security Posture– Security Operations (SecOps) is a vital element while operating on the cloud. The failure to set up and automate security best practices can be catastrophic for the enterprise.

While working with multiple industry behemoths throughout their journey from on-premises to hybrid to completely cloud-based infrastructure, I have observed a common trait or thought process across enterprises- the urge to replicate their on-premises infrastructure operations model to cloud, probably because it has been working fine for them. It is important to understand that moving and operating on the cloud not only requires technological changes but also demands a novel thought process of managing infrastructure on the Cloud. 

In the quest to overcome these challenges and achieve successful & optimized operations on the cloud, organizations need a robust, cost-effective, and efficient CloudOps solution. CloudOps is a mechanism to manage cloud services by leveraging an ecosystem of tools (cloud-native or 3rd party), implementing policies & best practices, and standardizing processes on the cloud. It involves a plethora of activities including FinOps, capacity optimization, automated provisioning, SecOps, unified management console, and many more.

The following 5A framework can be used to develop an effective CloudOps and FinOps strategy:

  • Automation Driven– Identify possible automation use cases for operations and take a rational approach to implement them to reduce manual effort.
  • Apply Standardization– Define, implement, and, if required, force standard policies and practices for cloud resources across business groups/ businesses functions.
  • Accountability– Build mechanisms to improve the traceability of who did what and when on the cloud. This will make people more accountable and responsible.
  • Actionable Insight– Build a mechanism to quickly understand the state of operations and identify ongoing/possible issues.
  • Availability, Confidentiality & Integrity– Make sure business-critical workloads have high availability, sensitive data is kept confidential, and protect the integrity of the environment through various security measures. 

While each enterprise’s problem statement for cloud operations is unique, the below process may be followed to create and deploy a CloudOps and FinOps solution:

  • Assess and understand: One of the most critical steps is to discover and understand the current technology, organizational processes and define key success criteria.
  • Plan and strategize: Perform competitive analysis of tools, introduce new processes/tweak existing processes, plan for employee upskilling and create a strong blueprint for implementation with clear ROI analysis.
  • Implement: Execute in a phased manner, have multiple checkpoints, and follow the execution blueprint to avoid delays. Phase-wise implementation will help replicate and fasten the process of implementation in subsequent phases.
  • Maintain and enhance: Public cloud providers are continuously developing new services on the cloud. Look for opportunities to use cloud-native services instead of custom scripts to reduce operational overheads. 

The impact CloudOps and FinOps solutions can have on enterprises

CloudOps and FinOps enable enterprises to tap into the full potential of cloud computing while maintaining a high level of control and visibility with optimized cost. When done right, enterprises can gain massive advantages from implementing such a solution. The following are a few of the many impacts that such a solution can drive:

As more and more enterprises have started moving to the cloud, the need for adopting a robust CloudOps and FinOps solution has become imperative. Enterprises which have adopted a CloudOps and FinOps solution at the early stages of their journey to the cloud have been able to realize the maximum benefit of cloud computing and continue to drive more value for their end customer. In a nutshell, the question is not whether or not an enterprise should adopt such a solution, but rather when (the sooner the better).

At Brillio, we have been building and implementing robust CloudOps and FinOps solutions for multiple Fortune 1000 organizations with the help of our resources, processes, and proprietary platform- BrillioOne.ai. The CloudOps module of BrillioOne.ai is a one-stop platform for CloudOps and FinOps solutions and is purpose-built to ensure optimized operations on the cloud.

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