Why Consider IT Infrastructure Managed Services

The global managed services market is predicted to reach US$ 260 billion by the year 2022. Digital transformation and innovations are enabling businesses across industry segments to experience improved performance and faster time to market. But the challenge for IT organizations is to align IT to business goals in this fast disrupting digital era. Most of the time IT organizations are caught up with managing complex IT infrastructure environments and the whole process of planning, building, running and maintaining IT makes it difficult to think of much else. Typical IT infrastructure consists of data center infrastructure, end user systems, enterprise networks, infrastructure security, storage and IT operations, often handled by internal teams with help from vendors. In the absence of efficiency of scale and manpower, disparate systems, and legacy software, scaling to adapt to a digitally transforming business environment is virtually impossible.

To take the example of Windows 10, the up-gradation process can be difficult, disruptive and yet its advantages far outweigh the migration process. Modernizing the existing IT infrastructure, is therefore, great to talk about but difficult to implement. So, which is of greater concern for IT managers? The day to day life where everything is uncertain, where computers crash, softwares don’t work and so forth or worry about the greater good of a highly scalable and superior future oriented, cost effective IT infrastructure set up?

To manage day to day activities and focus on disruptive changes is what is required from IT today. IT managers already understand the changing business environment but what they need is a strong, state of the art infrastructure environment. Legacy systems have to be upgraded to embrace digital infrastructure. There is a need for more people to manage operational activities and some of them to help with the digital transformation journey. All this can add up to escalating costs, plunging efficiency levels with a strong possibility of the whole thing failing.

Why Infrastructure Managed Services?

  • Experienced infrastructure management partners who specialize in making varied infrastructures work in harmony, while complying to set regulatory norms, standards and guidelines.
  • Typically, IT Infrastructure Managed service providers have the capability to run entire infrastructures by `keeping the lights on’. They will help by continuously monitoring updates, patches, services and manages infrastructure without costing the earth.
  • Managed Infrastructure services can help to transfer the load from time deficient IT to experienced hands. They help to maintain 99% up time, and manage new technologies, expertise, time and budget with existing budgets and super efficiency.
  • In several ways, Managed Infrastructure services are designed to ensure that the right people and resources are allocated to provide the maximum benefit.
  • IDC’s data, confirms that unplanned downtime costs organizations $58,118 for every 100 users. The average employee loses 12.4 hours a year due to server downtime and 6.2 hours a year for network downtime. By implementing Managed IT Infrastructure services, it is possible to reduce server and network downtime by more than 85 percent.
  • Managed Infrastructure service providers charge on a monthly basis. While it may seem that the expenses have not changed substantially, a study by IDC confirms that by bypassing the need for additional staffing costs they experience a 42% savings in IT budget.
  • IT Infrastructure Managed service providers will ensure that software’s are updated, and technology is always up-to-date.

To summarize the high value outcome from MSPs are:

  • Standardized and cost efficient IT operations
  • Enhanced Operational intelligence and security
  • IT consumerization and automation

Build an agile infrastructure to meet your business needs.  Partner with us to overcome your IT challenges. https://www.trigent.com/services/infrastructure-services/.

Upgrade to Windows 10 in Less Than 5 Weeks

CIOs mostly worry about the scale and complexities involved in upgrading to Windows 10. Some even say that this will be one of most tiring, expensive and time-sensitive IT project for organizations. To ensure that the upgrade does not cause an enterprise-size migraine would require IT to strike a balance between speed in upgrading and least disruption to operations.

The first step lies in building a solid business case for the upgrade. This will offset the arguments that will ensue, most of them objections to up-gradation. Here are a few strong points to get the buy-in of the management as well as every single user within the enterprise.

  • Windows 10 has several amazing security updates making security the number one driver for upgrading to the latest version of the operating system. According to Gartner, this is one of the biggest points favoring Windows 10 up-gradation.
  • Microsoft’s Focused Inbox helps to maximize operational time by managing Outlook mailbox. Bio-metric support ensures faster sign-on.
  • Windows 10’s continuous update methodology ensures that business users will receive updates regularly (two at least a month), in addition to monthly quality and security updates. By following the regular updates methodology, Microsoft ensures that users are not overwhelmed by a sudden spurt of features and instead have the time to adapt slowly and steadily to the Windows 10 environment.
  • Enterprises normally use several applications many of which could be third-party applications. The vendors who are responsible for maintenance of these applications will work to support the most up-to-date versions of platforms. Thus, older versions may not receive the support that is required resulting in loss of support.
  • Integrated processes will ensure that IT is not just perceived as an enabler and will instead be seen as the central hub for ensuring business goals are exceeded. Windows 10 provides IT managers with the tools for delivering the services that are needed to manage a better integrated business model.

The features mentioned above are generic to some extent and enterprises considering Windows 10 are most likely aware of its strength. These are just selling points to remove the roadblock to migration. However, once the decision to upgrade to Windows 10 has been approved, that is when CIOs have to face their internal demons. An example of the kinds of questions that send shivers down the backs are, ‘how long will the whole  process be?’ This question conjures several scary scenes such as a long one to two year period of disruption, escalating expenses, crashing systems and thankless moments.

Questions such as ‘Can our infrastructure handle automated deployments? In addition, ‘Can Windows 10 security features be implemented remotely?’ are some of the trouble shooters that CIOs will have to deal with.

To ensure peace of mind and a disruption-free upgrade requires CIOs to consider some key requirements to mitigate project risks such as:

  • Gathering and analysis of existing desktops system and network information
  • Understand security and compliance requirements
  • Post up-gradation of the operating systems to Windows 10, ensure that all desktops are back to normal operations
  • Document the entire process and conduct a basics user training on Windows 10.

While this is on a broader level, there is the need to get down to intrinsic detailing, such as ‘where do users store their content, i.e. local drives, in which case it could be lost during the upgrade process, to are the current apps compatible with Windows 10.’

Service providers with Windows expertise, ask all these questions and more to ensure that the entire upgrade process is risk-free, fast and smooth. Trigent’s expertise in Windows 10 up-gradation has resulted in a well-drawn out process for implementation. This starts with week one focusing on design and discovery and ends with user training and knowledge transfer, post-migration, by week five. To know more about Trigent’s Windows expertise, visit: our technologies expertise

How does Infrastructure Maturity Impact Business KPIs?

IT infrastructure, which includes hardware, software and human resources, is defining the present and the future of organizations across all industry segments. Those organizations that have a higher maturity level of infrastructure see marked improvements in KPIs versus those that have a lower maturity level. To fix short time business goals, it is common to look for quick fix solutions such as cloud migration. However, in the absence of a clear understanding of existing infrastructure, its limitations, risks, and benefits, preparing for the future can result in lower KPIs. Thus, ensuring higher KPIs requires a deep dive into the heart of the organization, i.e. its infrastructure level and determine its level of maturity.

The four levels of Infrastructure Maturity:

Level 1 – Equipped to meet current business requirements

Companies that fall under this category have a simple, efficient and scalable IT infrastructure within their own data centers. Their converged infrastructure decisions are need-based and driven by individuals. These organizations typically do not have cloud infrastructure but based on ad hoc requirements may use public SaaS or PaaS. They do not have a clear workforce plan in place.

Level 2 – Awareness of the future

These companies have supplemented or migrated to the cloud for greater agility and flexibility. They have access to real-time data across units and geographies, and experienced cost benefits. These companies hold onto their data centers but their decisions are mostly team driven. A pilot initiative with the cloud is possible but this may not be linked to business KPIs. They may have an annual IT workforce place.

Level 3- Ready to meet future needs

Taking their infrastructure to the next level, companies that plan for the future, focus on using big data analytics for driving business decisions. With a revolutionary approach to IT infrastructure management, decisions are at an IT organizational level. They do have a cataloged presence across private and public clouds. The IT organization is well planned and aligned to future requirements.

Level 4 – Inspiring and creating the future

They have a plan in place for the future that encompasses converged infrastructure, cloud and big data analytics. Business decisions influence converged infrastructure and the approach is revolutionary in nature. These organizations have cloud catalogs, security and data control in place. They regularly track and automate performance across different clouds. Future planning includes envisaging emerging technologies and strengthening existing teams to enhance skills or plan to hire future technologies.

Four Crucial Business KPIs:

Financial stability

Financial stability requires the management of operational, man power and physical assets of an organization in the immediate present but with a strong foundation to manage change and grow even in uncertain times.

Internal processes

Organizational processes are key aspects of internal services which can impact all facets and relationships of a business. Internal processes relate to procurement, billing, work orders and so forth. Efficient management of internal resources is key to managing resources efficiently.

Innovation and growth

Key innovation practices help to create a high performance workplace where learning is interlinked to growth. The organization’s culture in such cases embraces change and growth to continuously reinvent itself for long term business sustenance.

Customer Service Excellence

This KPI focuses on an organization’s ability to meet customer requirements of quality, time and value and beyond that exceed expectations through uncompromised services. Companies that continue to evaluate their offerings for relevance and open to developing new offerings are setting the path for future growth and stability.

Mapping Infrastructure Maturity to Business KPIs:

Infrastructure Maturity Financial Stability Systematic Processes Innovation and Growth Customer Service Excellence
Level 1
Equipped to meet current business requirements
Lack visibility into the overall costs and benefits of existing IT Infrastructure Information silos and manual processes which delay operations and reduces efficiencies Data analytics not captured, even though it may be available No systematic and automated processes to continuously meet and exceed expectations
Level 2
Awareness of the future
Some visibility into the next financial year’s overall budget requirements Adopted cloud infrastructure but unable to maximize its usage No data analytics in place to plan future innovation A few processes in place but lacks insight into customer expectations
Level 3
Ready to meet future needs
IT plans in place but no clear idea of its impact on financial stability Lacks a roadmap to migrate and manage cloud infrastructure Data available but unable to derive intelligence from the same Meeting customer expectations
Level 4
Inspiring and creating the future
A clear idea about existing IT infrastructure. Continued focus on existing and planned infrastructure to ensure maximum cost benefits A robust roadmap for future IT infrastructure management to automate all processes and enhance efficiencies in the short and long term. Data analytics available on a continuous basis to empower C level executives to plan for the future Next-gen technologies in place to ensure continuous customer engagement and appreciation

Trigent’s Managed Infrastructure Services

At Trigent, we use a highly structured, agile and collaborative approach to achieve your business goals using the right cloud technology infrastructure. We collaborate with best-of-breed technology providers – Microsoft Azure and AWS, to ensure our services are perfectly tailored to your business needs. To know more, visit: Trigent’s Infrastructure Services

Marked Improvement in ROI for Cloud Ready Organizations

Evolve into a cloud-native culture and enjoy the myriad benefits it has to offer.

The cloud infrastructure market is cumulus and expected to cross $51.7 billion in 2019, driven by the need for cost-effective and scalable IT solutions. Talking about the cloud effect on businesses, Natalya Yezhkova, IDC Research Director of Storage Systems says, “The breadth and width of cloud offerings only continue to grow, with an expanding universe of business- and consumer-oriented solutions being born in the cloud and served better by the cloud. This growing demand from the end-user side and expansion of cloud-based offerings from service providers will continue to fuel growth in spending on the underlying IT infrastructure in the foreseeable future.”

The cloud infrastructure boom is a natural transition for organizations whose IT costs were weighing them down. Scaling up or down meant more costs. Mandatory software upgrades were also needed and the overall IT infrastructure management required resources to manage it, but with no scientific method to limit costs.

Cloud infrastructure has changed this scenario and is providing companies of all sizes and across all industry segments the opportunity to maximize their IT infrastructure. However, having said that, when it comes to measuring Return on Investment (ROI) on cloud infrastructure some questions crop up. If one were to choose cloud computing – in-house or public cloud, how would one assign an ROI to it? What features of cloud infrastructure affect ROI?

ROI is the proportionate increase in the value of an investment over a determined period. Investments when moving to the public cloud are less, but calculated over a period, can be more. With a private cloud, the initial investment is more, but over time, this cost is factored out. This kind of measurement is purely technical and misses the broader impact of the cloud on a business. Overall, for any company, revenue numbers matter, but so do customer value, brand value, and the value of competitive advantage which cannot be ignored. Therefore, when calculating ROI on the cloud, one must focus on productivity, speed, size, and quality.

Keeping these factors in mind, here are some tangible ROIs from cloud computing:

  • Cloud computing as an abstract virtual hosting solution offers a real-time environment. It has taken away the need to invest in physical servers and upheld the pay-per-use model. It provides businesses with the resilience required for workplace productivity. It enables resource sharing and thus helps to improve utilization. This sharing feature is not restricted to enterprises; it can be between an enterprise and a public cloud or an enterprise with a private cloud. Its flexibility combined with the power of savings in the immediate future makes cloud infrastructure an attractive alternative to traditional IT infrastructure.
  • Cloud infrastructure empowers clients to access virtualized hardware on their own IT platforms. This offers numerous features and benefits such as scalability, limited or no hardware costs, location independence, security, and so forth.
  • Cloud infrastructure assures businesses tremendous performance whether they scale 10 percent or 100 percent. Not having to worry about additional infrastructure investment costs helps companies to plan their IT budgets better. There is also the fact that capacity wastage is brought down to nil.
  • There is no lockdown in infrastructure. A seamless performance wherever an organization’s businesses are located, performance remains the same. The pay-as-you-go model frees up investment costs bringing down IT expenditure considerably.
  • The capacity utilization curve is a familiar concept for all. The model illustrates capacity versus utilization. It helps organizations to maximize their IT spend and helps to provision more or less as deemed fit. It is fitted around the central idea of utility requirements provisioned by on-demand services to meet actual needs.
ROI from cloud computing

To summarize, the ROI on cloud infrastructure requires intuitive planning right from the plan to the execution stage. More importantly, to maximize savings on the cloud requires intuitive planning. Trigent’s Managed Cloud Infrastructure Services helps enterprises to control their cloud journey.

We help enterprises to choose the right cloud platform to move on-premise infrastructure and help run business applications. We help enterprises to identify the business areas and workloads that can be migrated to a cloud computing model to reduce costs and improve service delivery in line with business priorities.

Leapfrog to a Higher Level on the Infrastructure Maturity Continuum

Infrastructure and Operations (I&O) managers have their jobs cut out for them. The ground below their feet is shifting and the seismic waves are unsettling the IT function, as they have known it. Today IT infrastructure is intrinsically tied to business value and outcome. It is no more the backbone of an organization; it is the central nervous system that controls how far and how soon a business can push geographical and other boundaries. It controls how fast and best can customer relationships become, and how, importantly, costs can be controlled. IT infrastructure which till a few years ago, hummed quietly in a data center, has moved to center stage. Summarizing this change, Gartner Senior Research Director Ross Winser says, “More than ever, I&O is becoming increasingly involved in unprecedented areas of the modern-day enterprise,”

Infrastructure maturity essentially means how future-ready or digitally empowered an organization’s infrastructure is. Organizations that are high on the maturity curve have paved the path for competitive advantage, seamless processes, and effective communications leading to business agility.

The Five Levels of Infrastructure Maturity or Maturity Continuum

Level One

Disparate tools, standalone systems, non-standard technologies, processes, and procedures define this level. More importantly, the infrastructure includes an over or under-functioning data center which does not make intelligence acquisition easy

Organizations when assessing their current infrastructure and mapping it to business needs will realize that they fall short of meeting organizational expectations while IT expenditure is out of bounds. IT infrastructure, therefore, becomes the weight that will pull an organization back from its path to progress.

Level Two

The infrastructure that has systems, tools, and processes in place but lacks standardization falls under this category. In the absence of standardization, ad-hoc decisions will be made to adapt to digital transformation and this can be more harmful than beneficial in the end. What is required is a systematic approach where road-map defining tools and technologies is established and processes are defined to pave the way for a digital future.

Level Three

Level 3 maturity assumes that tools and processes are in place but the infrastructure may not be cost-effective. It could be that data is stored in-house and the cost of running a data center far outweighs the benefits. While applications, tools, and platforms are modern, they may still be grounded.

What is required is for organizations to consolidate and optimize their infrastructure, for operational efficiencies and cost advantage. Data intelligence may still be far away.

Level Four

This level implies that the infrastructure can be moved to the cloud and it is ready for a transformation. It also assumes that legacy systems have been replaced by platforms and applications that can be shifted to the cloud, without interruption to existing business processes. The concern for these organizations is related to data security and data intelligence.

Level Five

Maturity in IT infrastructure sees a complete integration of tools, technologies, processes and practices. These organizations are future-ready. The infrastructure costs are optimized and data is secure. They have adopted nexgen digital solutions that are focused on transforming user experience. These organizations have brought infrastructure to the front stage and built a business model that is future-ready.

At Trigent, we use a highly flexible, agile and integrated solution that helps you adopt infrastructure for both traditional and cloud-enabled workloads.

Our portfolio of solutions for building, deploying and managing your infrastructure include:

CONSULTING

Help you develop a road-map for creating a flexible, responsive IT infrastructure aligned with your business

DESIGN & BUILD

Innovate new solutions, establish long-term goals and objectives so that your infrastructure is flexible and fully scalable for the future.

IMPLEMENTATION

Configure, deploy and oversee the smooth running of the project. Our qualified engineers perform implementation/installation.

ONGOING SUPPORT

Ongoing operating system monitoring and configuration support, after go-live.

To know more visit managed cloud infrastructure service page.

How to Plan Your Datacenter Migration to the Cloud

Cloud computing is on every CIO’s mind but not always for the right reasons. This could be because of the fears related to security, business continuity, cost efficiency and data availability. Summarizing these sentiments, Lydia Leong, Vice president and distinguished analyst with Gartner says, “Efficiency-driven workload migration demands a different mindset and approach than agility-driven cloud adoption. The greatest benefits are derived from cloud-enabled organizational transformation, yet such transformations are highly disruptive and difficult. Moving to cloud IaaS without sufficient transformation may fail to yield the hoped-for benefits, and may actually result in higher costs”.

Datacenter migration

Datacenter migration requires evaluation of the weight of the data residing in the data center, and its current age and capacity. For example, if it is on its last leg, it might be better to decommission the data center and migrate to the cloud. If there are capacity limitations, these could also be reasons for considering cloud migration.

Then you would need to evaluate existing skill sets. If the internal IT organization does not have the requisite skillsets for cloud migration, it might be best to look for a cloud solutions service provider. The partner firm should have a strong reputation, experience in cloud technologies, and have a dedicated team of cloud specialists. If these technologists have industry experience, it would be even better.

The partner firm should be able to work out a thorough business case, perform a cost analysis, and prioritize workloads for a successful migration. The vendor needs to define the scope and road map for the migration. This immediately sets a context in terms of timelines and costs involved. It also prepares the existing teams for what is in store. During the discovery stage, the vendor should do a thorough analysis of the on-premise data center to prioritize it accordingly for migration.

Transition from “difficult to change” to Evolutionary Cloud Architecture

Data collection has to be as intense and exhaustive as possible to ensure that gaps are avoided. The vendor needs to work with the internal IT stakeholders to ensure that the data center is evaluated thoroughly, for a robust application inventory. This step could take at least a fortnight to complete but is crucial to planning capacity for cost optimization.

The above few steps naturally lead to the next one where the vendor does a deep analysis of critical information. The analysis will be comprehensive and map the migration to overall organizational goals, identify workloads and group them accordingly. This gives a clear perspective on cloud and infrastructure requirements post-migration and the costs for long term maintenance. Along with all these, there will need to be a plan for disaster recovery.

The final step, i.e. of creating a formal workload migration plan will be proposed by the vendor. Depending on the findings, the vendor may propose a wave or tier approach, to ensure short term return on investment and minimize operational disruptions. This migration plan is the blueprint or detailed architecture of how the migration will proceed.

Trigent Software’s 6 Keys to Successful Cloud Migration

  • Gain executive sponsorship and develop a strategy early
  • Portfolio assessment: Review and select the right applications to migrate
  • Budget for migration costs: tools, services, skilled resources
  • Start small and scale
  • Re-host (Lift and Shift) – low risk & reward
  • Re-platform (lift-and-reshape) – medium risk, high reward
  • Re-architect – high risk, high reward
  • Identify risks and ensure operational continuity
  • Create a repeatable plan and process to improve it.

Do you need help to securely and efficiently migrate your datacenter? We can help.

How to Ensure HIPAA Compliance in the Healthcare Cloud?

Cloud computing has overcast most, if not all, industry segments because of the benefits it offers. From manufacturing to e-commerce, banking to insurance, and education to real estate, industries are adopting cloud for its inherent benefits. The healthcare industry is also undergoing considerable change with healthcare organizations focusing on delivering ‘smart healthcare’ which means non-traditional care settings, multi-location facilities, and long-distance patient service. According to Deloitte, “With quality, outcomes, and value being the buzzwords for health care in the 21st century, sector stakeholders in the US and around the globe are looking for innovative and cost-effective ways to deliver patient-centered, technology-enabled “smart” health care, both inside and outside hospital walls.”

Continue reading How to Ensure HIPAA Compliance in the Healthcare Cloud?

Unclutter Your Cloud for Real Cost Advantage

We are aware of the fact that a key advantage of cloud computing is its ability to fit infrastructure to the requirements of an organization, i.e. pay only for what you use. With this formula for cost advantage, cloud computing is racing ahead as the preferred infrastructure of choice for companies ranging from startups to Fortune 50 companies. As Ed Anderson, Gartner Research Vice President sums it up, “Cloud-first strategies are the foundation for staying relevant in a fast-paced world. The market for cloud services has grown to such an extent that it is now a notable percentage of total IT spending, helping to create a new generation of start-ups and ‘born in the cloud’ providers.”

Because of its popularity, companies embrace the ‘lift & shift’ strategy, replicating their on-premises infrastructure. They then realize that they have not saved much and they wonder why they went to all this trouble.

Strategies to transform your business into the digital world

The method to experience cost savings with cloud computing is to watch out for some hidden pits such as over- provisioning, under-optimizing, or forgetting to turn off the ‘lights’. What this means is, lifting and shifting your data from on-premise to the cloud is only the very basic step in cloud computing. How you optimize cloud space will be the factor that will actually help to save money.

A couple of tips to ensure that your cloud is cost effective:

Firstly, it is important to keep a strict watch on billing, just as you would the electricity in your home. Public cloud service providers like AWS offer their tools such as Billing Dashboard, Billing reports and Cost Explorer to quickly identify trends. There are some external options to monitor cloud costs such as Cloudyn and Cloudhealth. These tools help you to calculate savings on a bill.

The fact is most organizations simply focus on scalability and elasticity. They looked to the cloud for faster infrastructure set up. However, the result is clutter and unorganized usage of the Cloud. To quote an example, when a project kicks off, the infrastructure, storage and software with licenses are assigned. However, more often than not, there may not be hundred percent utilization 24/7. Also as the project progresses, the project manager could fail to report to the infrastructure team, the need to reduce cloud resources. As the project ends the actual usage may be very different from what was originally planned. To summarize, enterprises waste nearly 40 percent of their cloud spend on inefficient use.

However, do enterprises have the manpower, bandwidth or the know-how to continuously monitor the cloud for optimal usage? This requires dedicated people who are technically evolved and therefore understand what is required from the cloud. It is only with their intervention that cloud can become truly cost effective.

Trigent’s cloud cost optimization services can help you reduce both current and ongoing cloud costs by identifying and eliminating waste.

With Trigent, you are assured of:

  • Continuous optimization of cloud for cost and efficiency.
  • Proactive cost monitoring with advanced alerts for cost control.
  • Identify and uncover unused resources with 450+ pre-built checks.
  • Helps in streamlining your current and projected cloud spend.

If you have already migrated to the cloud or in the process of migrating, get in touch with Trigent to maximize your cloud returns.