The Journey to the New IT: Four Key Observations
I do not think anyone who is currently working in IT right now would disagree with me that a transformation is in progress. There would probably be a heated discussion on what that transformation is, or where it is headed, as this transformation can mean different things to different companies. Let’s talk about what GreenPages is seeing with our clients and how this can help you make sure this transformation works in your users’ favor.
Here are four main changes I have noticed:
1. Users are now the focus, not applications or locations
It is all about the user. Years ago, IT was all about making sure the applications were up and running. IT spent a lot of time saying NO and had much more control of what was on the network and the tools that were available to their users. The advent of smart mobile devices such as Androids, iPhones and especially iPads has created new abilities for the user to get access to the data and applications they need anywhere, anytime instead of having to be in the office to work. Now the work IT is doing is providing this access to the users while keeping the data safe and available. Our clients are using VMware, Citrix, Cisco and many other technologies to provide this, and there are new options and capabilities monthly.
The days when users had to be in the office to work are long gone, and I am happy about that and am much more productive because of it.
2. Virtualization is now a commodity
Virtualization is becoming much like a high school diploma in the sense that it is now an entry level requirement. The values of using all of the memory, CPU and network resources you already have in a much more efficient way are undeniable. Now the next tasks are making better use of the physical resources by using optimization tools such as CA, VKernel and vCenter Operations Suites. These tools will let you assign the correct amount of resources to run the workloads without any waste or overprovisioning. This is a tremendous savings and allows our clients who are using them to forecast when hardware or software resources will run out so they can plan their purchases instead of hitting the wall and having to get something quickly.
The other side of this is doing a better job managing what you have. No admin I talk to has the time to proactively look at all of the virtual machines, physical hosts, network resources or metrics to find problems before they impact workloads. That is where tools such as vCenter Operations, vFoglight, CA and Veeam come in. They look at all of the resources, metrics, systems, and virtual machines and can point out areas of concern so you can focus identifying the issue and resolving it much quicker.
3. Cloud is here
The most overused term in the industry is Cloud. However, that does not mean that it isn’t a game changing technology. The cloud is changing and many of our clients are jumping on board in both small and large ways. Office 365, hosted servers and desktops, IAAS, and PAAS are the usual first steps. Say what you will about the cloud, more and more applications and workloads are running in the cloud and more are joining them all the time.
4. Better technology, better ways of solving issues
Everything from Intel and AMD processors, flash technology, SSD, new servers, converged infrastructure, improvement in VDI brokers and better and more efficient software keeps giving IT professionals better ways of solving the issues around keeping users happy.
The new IT is anywhere, anytime access to the applications and data needed to perform our jobs, entertain us and keep us connected. This is a journey and not a destination and I cannot wait to see what is coming next and how we can leverage it to make our lives, and our users’ lives, better.
By Chris Chesley