The business has always funded business applications. It is now choosing to use some of that money to buy its business applications from SaaS providers. This is a really big trend. It’s estimated that SaaS market will grow from $27b in 2012 to $250b in 2020 (Forrester Cloud Conference, November, 2011). That is a very fast growth rate - a CAGR of about 60% per year for eight years. Central IT has two choices. They can let the business “do its own thing” and suffer the consequences, or it can embrace what is happening and get it under control so that using SaaS applications doesn’t introduce a business risk.Whatever happens, IT systems must be as compliance, secure, reliable and performant as they have ever been. The promise of both public and private cloud is that it allows for the faster creation of applications and new functionality within existing applications. The expectation is that if IT adopts cloud, it will be able to better track the needs of the business.Cloud, either private or public, is automation-based. The expectation is that the use of cloud means that more IT spend will move from “keeping the lights on” (the 70% of IT spend) to innovation (the 30% of IT spend).
And there are “Context” applications. Context applications don’t differentiate us. Provided context applications meet our functionality, security and performance thresholds, it really doesn’t matter where we get them from. Examples of context applications include travel, purchasing, payroll, email, sharepoint, and sales force automation. Moore says that we should aim to SaaS our context applications because they defocus our IT organization away from concentrating on the core applications. Just as few companies now provide their own security services, catering services, maintenance and cleaning services, companies should look to have someone else do their context applications for them. We should look to SaaS context applications as soon as we safely can. This means that there will be a need for IT to embrace and “manage” the SaaS applications – maybe a light integration into a single sign-on, a backing off of trouble tickets, and management of the SaaS vendor relationship. HP Software’s Professional Services has a service to help you with this. Focus on What Differentiates YouThe questions we face when considering cloud are, “what can it do for me? How can I use it, while ensuring I retain the compliance, security, and performance my applications have today?” The business guru Geoffrey Moore (he of “Crossing the Chasm” fame) has a model that can help us here. Moore says that we need to step right back and think about our business applications. He says that in very broad terms, applications break down into two groups.There are “Core” applications. Core applications differentiate our business. We must continue to “own” these and we need to ensure they remain competitive. When the business needs new functionality for their core applications, we should respond as quickly as we can – we need to get the new functionality thru the dev and test stages and into production as fast as we can.
Cloud Compresses Service Delivery TimesAs we said earlier, our core apps are almost certainly going to be in need of constant update – new regulations, competitive moves, changes to take advantages of new products, and the need to support new technologies such as iPads, iPhones and Android devices. Imagine you are taking a plane ride. You wait at the check-in. You wait at security. And you wait to board the plane. If, however, you are a VIP, you don’t wait – you are straight thru check-in, straight thru security and straight onto the plane. Cloud promises to do the same for application development. Rather than waiting 3 months while the dev systems are ordered, delivered and built, you simply choose from a catalog, press a button, and two hours later, your dev environment is there. The same for test. No three month wait. Simply choose the test environment you need and two hours later it is ready for you to use. And the same for the production system for your application. You select the server, network and storage you need. You select the middleware and database you need. And two hours later, it’s built. You then use automation to “pour” the application into the production environment quickly and accurately.
Once we have our standardized components, we need to have a production line to combine them into the final product that was ordered. In this case, the “production line” is actually an automation system that is able to handle infrastructure components, middleware, database, and applications. We also need a catalog and portal to offer our products to our users. Users select the product(s) they want from the portal. The standardized components are taken by the automation system and the desired environments are built. Quickly – in hours rather than months. Like all efficient factories, the first thing we need in our cloud factory is standardized components. In this case, the components are server, storage and network. And middleware and databases. And the applications we need for our dev and test environments. You’ll note that we didn’t stop at the server, storage and networking. While having a factory to produce “infrastructure as a service” is a good start, it’s a long way from what development or test engineering needs. And it’s a long way from what we need to run a production application. The CloudSystem Private Cloud FactoryThere are two types of cloud that can be used to house our dev, test and production environments. There is public cloud and there is private cloud. Public cloud requires less setup, but may not have the security that your organization needs. So let’s start by looking at private cloud. What we need is a “factory” – a factory that produces dev, test and production environments to order. HP has created an integrated hardware and software private cloud “factory” called HP Cloud System. It is pre-integrated and should you have any problems with it, there is one, HP support number to call.
Production systems “stamped out” by HP’s CloudSystem private cloud factory can be linked into your existing HP Software-based Change Management, Automated Compliance, Security and Availability & Performance management systems. So, with HP CloudSystem, you don’t end up with a private cloud solution with a separate set of siloed management systems. Everything can come into your existing security and event management consoles. The models you have for your IT landscape will include your private cloud systems, the minute that they are “stamped out” by the HP CloudSystem. Becoming Part of Existing ITSM ProcessesAs we said, one of the things in our catalog will probably be a series of different production systems. Production systems are a little different because they will sit in the data center along-side other production applications like billing systems, ERP systems, banking systems and so on. These existing systems are already “plumbed into the datacenter”. What do we mean by this? We mean that it is connected into .. Our change control systems Our (hopefully automated) compliance scanning and remediation systems Our security monitoring and remediation systems And our availability and performance monitoring and remediation systems
The diagram shows the number of automation requests, per month, in a large organization. We can see that we can use the same automation system to serve a huge number of other automation requests:user requests for things like new email accounts or changes to sharepointscompliance scans and non-compliance remediations remediation of problems like network problems or disk failures and automated change requests coming from the service desk So, the automation and catalog components of the private cloud that gave you the increased speed of new application development, can also be extended to automate many thousands of users requests, compliance scans, compliance and incident remediations, and change requests. Because there are so many of these types of automated actions, the “keeping the lights on” savings can be large. Automation and CloudPrivate cloud can deliver huge advantages in terms of faster time-to-market for new functionality of those “core” applications that give us our competitive advantage. In fact, most of the gains from private cloud come not from savings in IT’s “keeping the lights on” costs, but from the incremental business revenue gained from better tracking business needs with application functionality. Private cloud gives you a/ a catalog and a portal onto that catalog and b/ an automation system. These components, plus an integration to your service desk, can be used in other ways too.
Develop and Test : when doing performance testing on the application, we will need to diagnose performance problems with code running in the public cloud. We have updated our performance tools to instrument and diagnose hybrid application performance problems. We also have the ability to simulate cloud services so you don’t hammer real public cloud services during testing. Hybrid Application Lifecycle ManagementPeople are also choosing to use public cloud services for their dev, test and/or production systems. We need to ensure that the tools we have for managing the development lifecycle are able to cope with applications where all or part of the application lies in the public cloud. Such applications are called “hybrid applications”. Let’s look at what we need to do across the lifecycle.And when the application is in production, we need to ensure we can manage it. We have updated our Availability and Performance Management solution so that it is able to measure and flex performance of the Amazon EC2 cloud. It is also able to diagnose performance problems with code running on Amazon EC2. Supplier Management. In choosing to use public cloud, we are making a “supplier choice”. IT has many suppliers – but public cloud is a “digital supplier”. We need to make good supplier choices and we need to track the performance and relative competitiveness of each supplier. HP’s Portfolio Management solution has been used by many customers for supplier management. Modern applications are usually “composite” – they are made up of lots of moving parts, each of which needs to be deployed. And as agile development gains traction, such deployment can occur as often as every three weeks. HP’s Automated Deployment Manager allows you to deploy composite application automatically. We have updated this product to include the deployment to Amazon and Savvis public cloud infrastructures.
Private cloud allows you to deliver new business functionality faster because it delivers the dev, test and production environments much more quickly – hours versus months. HP’s private cloud is an pre-integrated hardware/software combination – “one number to call” should you have any problems. The solution delivers infrastructure and platform as a service. And production systems integrate into your existing change, security, compliance and availability and performance systems already in place in the data-center. HP has updated its application lifecycle management solutions so that they are able to support “hybrid applications” – applications that run partially or wholly in the public cloud. There will be a huge growth in the use of SaaS for companys’ “context” applications – those application that don’t differentiate the company. HP Software’s Professional Services has a service to help you bring a SaaS application “into IT”.