08 May IT as-a-Service: Staying Agile in Today’s Growing Tech Mega-Universe
Businesses today must compete in a technology-driven world, where change is constant and relentless. The Internet is revolutionizing the way companies do business, and companies that do not embrace these new changes brought on by the Internet are sure to quickly fall behind their competition. With this in mind, let us explore the options available to businesses, specifically in regard to information technology as-a-service, or ITaaS.
Businesses depend on:
- Keeping their data safe and accessible.
- Maintaining their websites while operating non-stop or nearly non-stop.
- Protecting servers, networks, and databases from unauthorized access, both digital and physical.
- Quickly recovering from, or even operating through a disaster.
- Retaining a properly trained technical staff.
- Proactively planning for and implementing information technology infrastructure changes.
It is critical that the information technology needed to address the above business concerns is capable and up to the task.
There are both physical and human resources required to meet these needs. While the housing facility can be quite expensive, the human capital required can also be costly, as it includes a variety of specialists with in-demand technical skills. In addition to a well-trained technical staff, there are planning tasks that require competent management to insure that the IT infrastructure evolves with changing technology. Finally, in order to stay competitive, businesses must operate their websites continuously, year-round.
Some specific challenges to an in-house IT group that could potentially slow a business, causing it to fall behind its competition:
- Replacement of obsolete hardware causes temporary shut-down of data servers.
- New service requests by users cause large cost variations month-to-month.
- Large human commitment to maintain continuous, year-round up time.
- Skills shortages and hiring cause delays in business operations.
- Inadequate disaster recovery plan, leading to a failed disaster recovery.
- IT changes that fail to support legacy business functions.
If the cost of resources needed to keep current in this competitive business climate begins to take away from the primary business goals, then it is time for a business to consider outsourcing its IT infrastructure.
ITaaS allows businesses to get a variety of IT services from a provider dedicated to the type of service desired. A business can select IT from a menu of services, based on the needs and requirements of the business.
ITaaS services can vary widely, depending on the ITaaS provider. Some providers offer only colocation services, which include the storage, power, controlled atmosphere, internet connectivity, security, continuous operation support, and space for the customer’s servers. Other providers additionally offer hardware servers and software. For providers offering only colocation services, the client business must provide and maintain its own servers and software.
Internet connectivity may include Multihomed BFP, which allows for connecting to two internet service providers, and automatically using the one with the best connectivity to ensure a reliable and safe connection.
Some ITaaS providers may also provide public, private, and hybrid clouds. Businesses only needing the security of computing over a private network would utilize the private cloud, while businesses needing both private and public networks would benefit from a hybrid cloud. These cloud and other ITaaS services provide quick, efficient, and secure management of assets to keep your business from falling behind.