Advanced Cloud Optimization Strategies for 2019

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Implementing Software as a Service (SaaS) and/or Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) are part of most company’s cloud strategy for 2019.

The appeal is obvious: lower total cost of ownership, reduced infrastructure investments, fewer IT management needed, increased flexibility, and mobile access. Add in enhanced information protection and internet security and it’s hard to make a case against using the cloud.

Implementing advanced cloud optimization strategies for 2019 can create new opportunities while managing costs. 

2019 Trends In Cloud Computing

Research and consulting firm Gartner calls cloud computing the new normal. It’s gone from a market disruptor to mainstream. Yet, as few as a third of enterprises using the cloud have a documented strategy guiding them through the transition.

Efficient cloud computing doesn’t happen without a solid plan and strategy.  As you develop or evolve your cloud strategy, you need to be aware of emerging trends.

Innovative Tools For Everyone

Cloud computing has revolutionized how teams work. It has democratized innovation by allowing teams to use the latest tech without major capital investments.

Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and other assistive technologies such as Chatbots, are available as services in the cloud. This removes the need to build this type of cloud strategy from scratch. Organizations can deploy APIs that handle solutions such as image recognition or machine translation. 

Cloud computing makes this kind of highly advanced technology available to anyone.

AI-Fueled Solutions

Almost every major cloud vendor now offers some version of AI-fueled software solutions in their product suites. Unlike machine learning frameworks that need highly skilled developers and data scientists, AI can drive a number of products that can fuel business intelligence, including:

  • Predictive Analytics

  • Voice Recognition and Voice-Enabled Interfaces

  • Automated Security

  • IT Management operations

  • Recommendation Engines

Seamless Solutions

The cloud provides a seamless experience for users regardless of device or location. Even when users change devices or touchpoints, the data flows with them. It makes for easier collaboration for work teams.

Organizations are finding they don’t need to house work teams in the same location, which is opening up remote work and expanding the pool of skilled candidates.


Going Serverless

Cloud providers are now offering solutions that can execute snippets of code without the need to provision. This cloud strategy charges you based on computation usage instead of having to reserve or pay for a fixed amount of bandwidth or servers.

In a serverless environment, servers are still used, but developers don’t need to manage them.  This helps avoid unused or under-utilized resources that continue to add to your expenses.

It can also allow code to run closer to the end-user to reduce latency.  In a dedicated server environment, data doesn’t have to go back and forth from the origin server.

Hybrid Cloud Solutions

Hybrid clouds combine public and private clouds. Companies are increasingly blending the two approaches by keeping mission-critical workload on private clouds while putting less critical and new workloads on public clouds.

APIs, VPNs or WANs connect the environments. Done well, users won’t necessarily know whether they are using a public cloud, private cloud, or on-premise legacy equipment. The best part is that it won’t matter to the end-user. Each component works in a similar manner.  Virtualization, containers, instances, or software-defined storage will abstract resources and “pool” them into clouds. Automation software will allocate resources efficiently. Management tools can provision new environments.

Multi-Cloud Environments

Using multi-cloud solutions, organizations can guard against vendor lock-in. This helps eliminate the reliance on any one single cloud provider and allows companies to take advantage of pricing options on competitors. By separating different workloads and processes across multiple provides, companies can optimize their spending.

Mixing Cloud And Edge Computing

Edge computing provides speed.  With its ability to collect and process large amounts of data in near real-time, organizations are folding edge computing into their cloud strategy.  This can lower connectivity costs because edge computing will transmit the most important data, but not all of the data being stored.

Combined with cloud computing, edge computing offers faster response times, added security, and seamless integration.

Service Meshing

Most new applications built in the cloud are taking the form of microservices. Native apps are built-in containers that are interconnected. A service mesh connects, discovers, monitors, and authenticates communications across these containers and across cloud environments.

Managed Security

Moving data to the cloud and out of company’s walled gardens has made security more complex. Companies are increasingly embracing managed security as a way to stay on top of emerging threats, including strategies such as:

  • Identity management

  • Mobile security

  • Threat intelligence

  • DNS filtering

  • Advanced Firewalls

  • Endpoint protection

A total managed security solution will also automate backups and provide disaster recovery options.

Optimizing Your Cloud Spending 

Unused, and underutilized resources tend to waste money. Your planning should include using start/stop strategies to run instances and sessions when needed instead of 24/7. Delete storage volumes that are no longer attached to instances and old snapshots that you no longer need to keep. Downsize any instances when running consistently below 40% of CPU and memory utilization.

Take advantage of advanced scheduling and automation tools to efficiently optimize your usage. 

Stay On Top Of Emerging Cloud Technology

As with any other emerging technology, you can’t build a plan and put it on the shelf. You need to regularly review your needs and your capabilities. As tech changes, you need to adjust your cloud strategy to take advantage of new opportunities to grow your business and optimize your costs.

Cloud, IT ProfessionalAndy Wright