Choose the Cloud-based LIMS that’s best for you – Here’s how!

We’ve been constantly striving to move towards automated, paperless processes in laboratories. Greater laboratory efficiency has always been a major motivator for doing so. The transition of course requires the right IT support, hardware, and a solid management system such as the laboratory information management system (LIMS).

Benefits of cloud-based LIMS software

Today, laboratories rely on different tools to manage the variety, velocity, and volume of data. High throughput technologies that are being used today increase the complexity and quantity of data that needs to be processed on a daily basis. Besides, organizations operate globally and interact with laboratories around the world leading to a constant flow of data beyond geographies and locations. LIMS helps organizations tide over the many challenges by helping them automate business processes, facilitate data capture, and streamline workflows.

The LIMS market globally is expected to touch $1.7B by 2025 from $1B in 2020 considering a CAGR of 12.1% thanks to technological advancements and the growing adoption of cloud-based LIMS.

R&D partnerships are increasing rapidly too, necessitating a perfect solution that ensures end-to-end integration of the lab across functions. It is evident LIMS is critical for the survival and success of laboratories but that does not mean you would simply want to buy it off the shelf without even evaluating your needs.

The right LIMS application will improve internal competencies and offer a sustainable competitive edge in no time. But selecting the right LIMS application is crucial and an earnest review of the needs of process owners is necessary from a LIMS perspective.

Many questions come to mind when choosing the best LIMS. On-premise or cloud, which parameters to consider while selecting LIMS, would there be challenges in implementation and adoption – the questions can be endless. As the need for operational efficiency, decreased cost, flexibility, and security continue to rise, modern laboratories are now in the favor of having cloud-based LIMS.

It’s time we delved deeper into LIMS to understand what it’s all about and why a cloud-based LIMS may be the best match for your laboratory.

How does a good Laboratory Information Management System help you?

The primary role of LIMS is to remove blocks that stand in the way of attaining operational efficiency. A modern LIMS facilitates workflow automation and management, enables data analysis, and supports regulatory compliance. It also plays a big role in facilitating audit trails and integrates with instruments, devices, and systems. But in order to ensure that the LIMS plays its part perfectly well within your lab environment, it needs to be implemented, integrated, and validated properly. You need to also plan for its maintenance and upgrade early on.

Things to remember while choosing LIMS

A thorough business process analysis (BPA) can maximize the value of LIMS. The focus of selection should not be to merely implement a system that can speed up existing work processes but to have one that is designed to optimize workflows. Laboratory stakeholders need to have a series of discussions and process walk-throughs to create a Requirements Matrix to choose the right LIMS and ensure a successful implementation. You need to determine its place in the laboratory systems architecture roadmap especially if the implementation is going to be followed by integration with a large number of instruments and systems and if it’s going to be deployed at multiple sites. You need to have a strategic vision to foresee risks and the possible strategies you may want to consider for mitigating them.

Is Cloud the future?

Most would think so.

Modern enterprises do believe the cloud is a huge step forward and is being touted as the next big thing. The latest LIMS comes with multiple hosting options but the one that you should consider should align well with your business goals and the standards established by IT. While many are still content with on-premise deployment, there is a growing demand for cloud-hosted fully managed deployment (SaaS).

While the enterprise deployment usually involves installing the LIMS software on the customers’ server and data is also maintained on their servers guarded by a corporate-wide firewall for optimal security, the SaaS model has several users operating on a single instance of the software and database. This kind of coexistence is usually referred to as a multi-tenant mode though you have the option of choosing a single-tenant mode also if security is your primary concern. You are accordingly provided dedicated infrastructure but at a slightly higher cost.

There are multiple advantages to using cloud-based LIMS. Here are some of the top ones that make it so popular:

  • It’s cost-effective- You have the PAYG option where you pay as you go only for what you need
  • It reduces maintenance costs – You save a lot due to the absence of license fee, in-house servers, dedicated resources, and costs associated with hardware and software maintenance
  • Minimizes dependence on dedicated IT resources – Vendor provides the necessary infrastructure and support thereby ensuring that you are able to manage with minimal resources
  • Easy to scale – Fast and flexible scalability allows you to expand as per the quantity of data and changing business needs
  • Enables backup and disaster recovery – No up-front investment is required to protect data as the backup and recovery solutions take care of it irrespective of the size of your data and business
  • Greater efficiency – The vendor takes full responsibility for its smooth functioning and communicates in advance when a downtime is scheduled
  • Quick deployment – Deployment time is much lesser as the application is up and running immediately since it is deployed by the vendor in the cloud
  • Automated updates – Quick and automatic updates to update infrastructure without hassle save time and effort

Since there are multiple vendors and diverse hosting options, it may be difficult to choose between on-premise and cloud-based LIMS on the basis of the total cost of ownership. A thorough assessment of your business needs would therefore be a good idea to ensure you are on the right track. While doing so, make sure that your LIMS system is suitably equipped to integrate with your instruments and other related systems.

Validating LIMS

You also need to validate the system following its implementation to ensure that it is working just the way it is supposed to. Regulatory agencies require validation to ensure data accuracy and integrity in the systems. From a regulatory as well as product quality perspective, it is important to maintain a detailed audit trail of the data.

Every time you make changes to the system you need to validate it again. Commonly referred to as Computer System Validation (CSV), this form of validation is necessary when you configure a new system or modify it with upgrades, patches, extensions, etc. A risk-based assessment is usually recommended to determine test cases along with the level of testing required.

As with everything else, precise validation too is possible only when you review your requirements critically prior to validation. Precise validation testing will ensure that the systems work perfectly well over the full software development lifecycle. Also, pay attention to streamlining the paperwork as precision is required in documentation too in order to fulfill regulatory compliance.

Planning is the key to cloud-based LIMS adoption

While customization is a good thing it is often accompanied by complexities and increased cost of maintenance. There will be several integrations too and the need for extensions and enhancements will continue to grow as the nature of your business evolves. It is therefore important to keep scalability and maintenance factors in mind while planning for your LIMS system.

Once you are able to implement LIMS effectively, you need to ensure that your people use it. There has to be proper communication and collaboration for effective adoption to take place. Frequent communication with stakeholders often leads to active participation and successful adoption. An extensive LIMS training program is also recommended so that everyone gets acquainted with the system quickly and learns to use its myriad features. Only then will they be able to use it consistently and enable the new LIMS to add business value to your laboratory.

Choose the right cloud-based LIMS solutions with Trigent

Trigent has been helping laboratories manage growing business challenges with cloud-based LIMS. Our LIMS solutions help you deal with the growing volumes of data effortlessly. We can implement and validate a LIMS for you and ensure that it is cost-effective and efficient.

Moving to the cloud is an important decision and we can help you with everything you need with a highly systematic approach to laboratory information management.

Allow us to help you. Call us today for a consultation.

Mobility Is Changing the Transportation and Logistics Industry

The transport and logistics (TLS) companies operate in a decidedly complex market with numerous dynamic variables, including high investment, fluctuating oil prices, multimodal freight policies, large data, and human attributes. Mobility solutions streamline operations while offering substantial operational and cost advantages. Consequently, transport companies are able to extend the value to their customers by offering fast, flexible, and reliable services.

Operational challenges associated with the Logistics Industry

All businesses, regardless of the field of activity, must buy and sell products that have to be moved from one location to another. Also, people are swamped with work and prefer to buy things online instead of going to a supermarket. The need for logistics today is progressively increasing because eCommerce has become a major trend, and freight is considered the lifeblood of a country’s economic development.

However, dealing with logistics processes has always been a complex and arduous task. Companies with large fleet operations often struggle with operational challenges and inefficiencies.

Major challenges that logistics teams encounter:

  • Adherence to regulations
  • Organize and demystify operations
  • Offering categorized, custom-made services
  • Logistic and workforce management

Opportunities to reap the benefits from mobility solutions

By leveraging mobility solutions, TLS companies reap the benefits of operational efficiency, mainly reduced operational costs. Cloud-based mobile apps provide a bird’s eye view of the fleet and boost efficiency in functioning. These apps are delivered across devices and platforms enabling stakeholders, field personnel, and analysts to easily access and use them to monitor at any point in time. A connected fleet on a mobile app enables tracking of operational systems, preventative maintenance, hours of equipment usage, resource utilization, etc.

The GPS tracking systems monitor the movement of vehicles, shipments, and cargo in real-time accounting for any breakdowns, accidents, or delays. Automation replaces many laborious manual processes enabling legacy companies to upgrade to digital methodologies. Standardizing processes and workflows using mobile applications ensures a paperless workflow with digital dashboards that help in making quicker decisions. Automating sales and customer services’ communication cuts downtime/resources on repetitive and predictive tasks and reduces the scope for delays and human errors.

The most important feature of a mobile app is it facilitates gathering and synthesizing data. Firms mine data for better insights into customer preferences, performance enabling critical decision making. According to a report from McKinsey Global Institute, companies that embrace analytics can generate additional 3 to 5 percent return on sales.*

Leveraging Mobility Solutions by Logistics companies (Surge, HDFleet, and ReedTMS)

In the last several years, logistics has been seeing significant growth because of developments in technology, and organizations are tempted to make the most of the new-fangled innovations and continual evolutions. The augmented demand for mobility has created the need to focus on challenges such as investment and capricious gas prices. The logistic business has created a mobile transportation system that can satisfy the imminent requirements of the economy and society. The main goal of mobility solutions in the logistics industry is to improve the efficiency and safety of transportation, coupled with bettered environmental sustainability.

  • Operations – Fleet management solutions enable tracking multiple vehicles with their latest location, generating MIS reports for analyzing productivity.
  • Route planning – Mobility solutions bring the capabilities of planning the best routes – a factor critical in logistics to save time, fuel, and thus optimize costs.
  • Geo-fencing – A Geo-fence configured into an app prompts or triggers a pre-programmed alert when a mobile device enters or exits a virtual boundary set up around a geographical location. They are particularly useful to monitor the fleet so as to reduce cost and trigger warnings to drivers entering uncharted territory or deviating from their route.
  • Control & Safety – The apps monitor the driving pattern and in turn, provide the safety index of the driver. It’s an excellent tool for performance analysis and to incorporate performance-related incentive systems. It also helps in continuously tracking vehicles with location and real-time photos & videos that in turn help in claiming insurance. The systems can also constantly monitor driver’s conditions and alarm us in case of violation of traffic rules such as usage of phone while driving, rash driving, overspeeding, and stopping at unauthorized locations.
  • Documentation – Freight documentation is completely digitized, cutting down manual labor and errors. In case of accidents, providing documentation is easier for claims and procedures. The digital driver’s license or digital copy of a driver’s license, stored in a smartphone can be used to authenticate documentation.
  • Influences decision-making – Applications gather data about demand and supply, observe business performance, and help in making key decisions for a company.
  • Customer Services – Mobile apps improve the quality of customer service by providing a friendly user interface, end-to-end shipment tracking, manage customer complaints, act as proof of delivery, alerts, and notifications.

The Fitting Solution for Your Enterprise

Trigent’s Mobility Services team is well-equipped to develop applications and tools whether it is for your existing systems or new business needs. We develop solutions that have the ability to seamlessly integrate with the existing systems. We explore the progressive web, native, cross-platform, and hybrid applications and our experts prescribe the most suitable one keeping in mind your current and future requirements. Our secure, reliable, scalable apps enable you to achieve operational efficiency and reduce costs significantly.

Get in touch with our team to take the next step.

Why retail should dovetail cloud for success?

The year 2020 has been a year of learning for all industries. The unprecedented scale and reach of the pandemic encompassing the world impacted every region and industry. Retail in the United States is no different. Sales dropped from $5.47 trillion in 2019 to $4.89 trillion in 2020 due to the virus and restrictions to curb the pandemic. The prevailing condition demands that the retail industry, like every other industry, initiate or increase its speed of adopting technologies that enable businesses to face the new normal. Cloud plays an essential role in this transformational journey. A major driver set to act as the backbone, enabling the adoption of technologies and delivering desired business results. The global retail cloud market that stood at $11.89 billion will touch 39.63 billion by 2026, emphasizing cloud as a significant driving force that will propel the retail sector in the future.

Here are some of the factors that make the cloud a lucrative proposition for retailers.

In-sync operation

Many brick and mortar stores or offline stores still depend on legacy systems. Dependence on legacy impacts the integration of various business operations such as inventory, shipping, development, and POS. Migrating to the cloud enables retailers to get the different business operations in sync and get a consolidated view of all departments and locations in real-time. A real-time view of the inventory, shipment, and other business processes enables an in-sync seamless functioning across the organization.

Superior Customer Experience (CX) and convenience

The experience-driven economy has furthered the emphasis on personalization. Not only is there a demand for superior, seamless experiences, but users also want these experiences to be personalized. 80% of consumers are more likely to buy from a brand that provides personalized experiences. Retailers are well placed to provide to their customers what they demand. With a gold mine of customer and sales data, retailers can utilize cloud-enabled computing capabilities to analyze data. Cloud allows retailers to get a unified view of data from multiple sources, enabling the retailers to make data-driven, timely decisions. Moving to the cloud also boosts the performance of web applications ensuring that users do not abandon the site due to slow performance and a poor experience.

Scalability

Many reasons impact the sale of products. It could be the launch of a new product from a renowned brand or end of season sale that causes a spike in sales. The retail industry is also impacted by peak demand during particular seasons, such as the holiday season. As per Adobe Analytics, online retail sales grew 32.2% from 2019 to touch $188.2 billion during the holiday season. Similarly, the sales could also dip owing to low demand and other factors. Cloud helps retailers to prepare for such eventuality. Cloud-enabled systems can be programmed for scalability, meaning they can be automated to meet the requirements in case of a surge and limit the use of resources in case of a dip. Retailers can also save big on infrastructure investments and costs by using many cloud service providers’ pay per use model.

Retailers are looking for technologies that can immediately impact their business. They are either already experimenting or looking to build solutions that enhance customer experience and drive growth. Cloud works as the perfect catalyst in this transformational journey for retailers as it powers agility and provides the platform to build modern apps faster and at scale, anytime-anywhere.

Explore the latest trends in technology that are shaping the future of retail. Learn how Trigent’s expertise can help you conquer the cloud and get an edge over the new normal.

Incorporate the latest capabilities in cloud technology with Trigent’s team of certified cloud experts. Our suite of cloud services encompassing cloud advisory, cloud-native application development, cloud architecture, migration services, and cloud management is equipped to support you at every stage of your cloud journey.

Improve Your Cybersecurity Posture and Resilience with VAPT

Just a few months ago, Japanese car manufacturer Honda confirmed that it suffered a cyberattack drawing attention to gaping vulnerabilities that had come to the fore as a result of the increase in the size of the remote workforce in the wake of the pandemic. Then came the Russian cyberattack against the United States that is now being considered as an act of espionage. Malicious code was inserted into updates and pushed to SolarWinds customers giving hackers access to computer networks of government agencies, think tanks, and private firms.
These are classic examples that demonstrate how vulnerable networks can be and how easily servers, infrastructure, and IT systems can be compromised. Fortunately, Vulnerability Assessment and Performance Testing (VAPT) provide the much-needed monitoring and protection to help enterprises protect themselves from hackers and security breach.

Understanding VAPT

Both vulnerability and penetration testing are two distinct security testing services that are often said in the same breath and sometimes even classified as one and the same. Penetration testing however needs a complete assessment of vulnerability to check for flaws or deficiencies in order to proceed further. It involves simulating an attacker’s attack. A thorough analysis conducted from the attacker’s perspective is presented to the system owner along with a detailed assessment that iterates implications and offers remedial solutions to address the vulnerabilities. When conducted together, VAPT offers complete vulnerability analysis.

Notorious tactics like sniffing (passive listening on the network) and ARP spoofing (an attack technique used to intercept traffic between hosts) call for stringent measures to ensure cybersecurity across computer systems and networks. To safeguard themselves from hackers, enterprises globally are investing heavily in vulnerability assessment and penetration testing or VAPT to identify vulnerabilities in the network, server, and network infrastructure.

Vulnerabilities have existed from the very beginning though they were not exploited as often as they are now. As per a study by Splunk, 36% of IT executives said there was an increase in the volume of security vulnerabilities due to remote work. In a day and age when ‘digital’ means everything, it is important to secure business operations from cyberattacks, threats, and breaches that can demobilize businesses. Vulnerabilities may also lead to litigation costs, loss of trust, and compliance penalties; all of which may affect the credibility of an enterprise in a big way. VAPT helps address all of them in the most effective manner.

The tricky part about VAPT is that it cannot be assigned to the security officer of the organization to conduct it as the results may not be so accurate. This is because the security officer would know the security system inside out and is likely to look for inadequacies in places where they are most likely to be found. But things change when a specialist is brought in. It is quite common to have third-party contractors run the pentest (penetration test) as they can identify the blind spots within a security system quickly. Often, the results are startling and the loopholes that have gone unnoticed are identified and fixed before they can cause damage.

What VAPT entails

Typically, VAPT comprises a network penetration test, application penetration test, physical penetration test, and device penetration test.

Network penetration tests involve identifying network and system-level vulnerabilities, incorrect configurations & settings, absence of strong passwords & protocols, etc.

Application penetration testing involves identifying application-level deficiencies, malicious scripts, fake requests, etc.

Physical penetration testing covers all physical aspects such as disabling CCTV cameras, breaking physical barriers, malfunctions, sensor bypass, etc.

Device penetration testing helps detect hardware and software deficiencies, insecure protocols, configuration violations, weak passwords, etc.

VAPT is carried out very systematically in stages that include everything from collating information and analyzing threats and vulnerabilities to emulating real cyberattacks and creating reports replete with findings and suggestions.

The need to assess the threat landscape

There would be a point in time when you feel that you have the best of security measures and there’s absolutely nothing to worry about. A pentest then would be the last thing on your mind. But in reality, a pentest is akin to an annual health checkup that helps detect health hazards well in advance. Regular pentests will ensure the wellbeing of your enterprise keeping your technical and personnel arsenal in perfect health.

2020 saw organizations battling not just the impact of the virus but also a digital pandemic that was equally deadly. According to PwC, 55% of enterprise executives have decided to increase their budget for cybersecurity in 2021 while 51% are planning to onboard a full-time cyber staff in 2021.

Secure your environment with sustainable VAPT

Digital fitness is everybody’s responsibility and employees should take ownership of their online behaviors to build a cyber-aware culture. As connectivity continues to grow, your most sensitive assets are at risk. Vulnerabilities have often been the root cause of breaches and call for immediate remedial steps. VAPT provides the necessary roadmap to enterprises on their way to building cyber-resilience. The vulnerability assessment services offer a detailed assessment of external and internal network infrastructure, applications, servers, and client devices along with recommendations to address security weaknesses. Penetration testing on the other hand exploits these vulnerabilities to depict an accurate picture of their impact. Real-world scenarios and techniques are emulated for this purpose.

A robust, compliant ecosystem rests on the adoption of VAPT best practices to minimize the ‘attack surface’. These should include frequent testing based on historical data and a sustainable VAPT program to empower security leaders and vulnerability management teams. A good VAPT program will identify, evaluate, treat, and report vulnerabilities to ensure that every time you onboard a new employee, customer, or partner, you are not exposing yourself to new threats.

VAPT can help ensure

  • Network security
  • Application security
  • Endpoint security
  • Data security
  • Identity management
  • Infrastructure security
  • Cloud security
  • Mobile security

Following SolarWinds hacking, there is a greater focus on beefing up cybersecurity. Markets and Markets predict the global cybersecurity market to grow at a CAGR of 10.6% from $152.71 billion in 2018 to a whopping $248.26 billion by 2023, with North America holding the biggest market size followed by Europe in the second position. And yet, a significant number of organizations continue to remain ignorant about the importance of expanding their cybersecurity capabilities.

As Richard Horne, Cyber Security Chair, PwC infers, “It’s surprising that so many organizations lack confidence in their cybersecurity spend. It shows businesses need to improve their understanding of cyber threats and the vulnerabilities they exploit while changing the way they think about cyber risk so it becomes an intrinsic part of every business decision.”

Stay a step ahead of threat actors with Trigent

Threat actors will continue to resort to new tactics threatening the cybersecurity of global corporations. It’s up to us to evolve and rise to the challenge with the right measures in place. At Trigent, we help you protect your business. We assess your business environment using diverse tools and scans to detect vulnerabilities and eliminate them.

Improve your cybersecurity posture with us. Allow us to help you identify vulnerabilities and discover where you stand on the cybersecurity resilience scale. Call us now.

Evolve into a Cloud-Native culture

Why go Cloud Native?

Cloud-Native is one of the biggest trends in the software industry today. The cloud-native approach works for modernizing existing applications and building new applications.

Cloud-native application takes advantage of cloud computing models to increase speed, flexibility, and quality and reduce deployment risks. The key factor to consider here is how applications are built, deployed, and managed.

As a platform-agnostic application, it is easy to manage iterative improvements using Agile & DevOps processes.

1. From a legacy system into the cloud
Organizations who moved from the legacy system into the cloud may face certain challenges. The legacy backup and disaster recovery tools used in old-school data centers do not work in cloud-native environments. Considering that the responsibility for data, processes, data management, maintenance, troubling shooting rests with the business, and not the cloud service provider, cloud-native is the way to go.

2. Rebuild technology foundation
Organizations that wish to make technological changes but do not have the luxury of rebuilding their technology foundation can adopt the Cloud Native approach. They stand to gain significantly by making gradual and fundamental shifts in their culture, processes, and technology to become cloud-native.

3. Innovation & Speed
As software is key to how consumers engage with businesses, innovation and speed have become imperative to their survival and growth. Businesses benefit from the cloud-native approach that gives them the ability to improve the quality of applications, reduces deployment risks, and improves the time to market.

Benefits of Cloud Native

Benefits of Cloud-Native

The building blocks of Cloud Native apps

Whether the challenge is in creating a new Cloud Native app or upgrading an existing one, organizations need to consider these essential building blocks of a Cloud Native ecosystem.

1. Microservices architecture for continuous improvement
The process breaks applications down to single-function services called microservices. Microservices are loosely coupled but remain independent. They allow incremental, automated, and continuous improvement of an application without causing downtime.

2. Containers for flexibility and scalability
Containers package software with all its code and dependencies in one place allowing the software to run anywhere – on a desktop, traditional IT, or the cloud. This allows maximum flexibility and portability in a multi-cloud environment. Containers allow fast scaling up or down with Kubernetes orchestration defined by the user.

3. Kubernetes for cost-effective Cloud Native development
The container orchestration platform enables scheduling and automating the deployment, management, and scaling of containerized applications. Kubernetes is versatile and offers a breadth of functionality, vast open-source of supporting tools, and portability across leading cloud service providers.

4. Agile methods in DevOps processes
Application development for the Cloud-Native approach follows Agile methods and DevOps principles with a focus on building and delivering apps collaboratively by development, quality assurance, security, IT operations, and delivery teams.

Are you ready for the Cloud Native journey?

The path to Cloud Native is unique to each organization depending on their stage in cloud maturity and business goals. Before beginning the Cloud-Native journey, consider these factors.

Cloud applications

1. Cloud-enabled
A cloud-enabled application was developed for deployment in a traditional data center but it was later changed so that it could run in a cloud environment.
Cloud-Native applications are designed to be platform-agnostic and are scalable.

2. Cloud-ready
The cloud-ready application works in the cloud environment or a traditional app that has been reconfigured for a cloud environment.
Cloud-Native apps are developed from the beginning to work only in the cloud and take advantage of cloud architecture.

Business objectives

1. Develop new Cloud Native apps – Organizations can quickly respond to new opportunities with the Cloud Native approach to building new applications.

2. Modernize existing apps – Many valuable applications are critical to business operations and revenue. They may not be easily replaceable. Applications are portable from on-premise infrastructure to the cloud and re-architected to become Cloud Native.

3. Improve app delivery – Container-based automation can accelerate the app delivery cycle.

4. Drive business innovation – For businesses whose success depends on constant innovation, introducing new features, Cloud Native tools support innovation, new ways to deliver solutions faster.

As Cloud Native technologies grow, businesses that wish to keep pace with competition and stay relevant in the future need to start right now. Evolution towards cloud-native effects design, implementation, deployment, operation of applications. Being prepared for the next big technological wave by making the shift today is essential.

Trigent Cloud Services team handholds businesses to leverage the advantages of the cloud for next-gen business requirements. Our experts help in building scalable, reliable, secure, flexible cloud-based apps in the native environment by leveraging Cloud-Native features of AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform.

Among other Cloud Services, our portfolio includes Cloud Architecture and Cloud Managed Services with a key focus on Cloud Native applications.

Take the next step in the cloud journey – get in touch with our experts for a business consultation.


Sources:
https://www.ibm.com/cloud/learn/cloud-native
Red Hat – the path to cloud-native applications

Trigent Recognized as Top Cloud Consultants 2020

The numerous possibilities in adopting cloud services in your business can sometimes be overwhelming. Here at Trigent, our vision is to help businesses realize the full potential of cloud, irrespective of their maturity stage in the cloud journey.

Thanks to its cloud-led strategy, Trigent has empowered organizations to drive business acceleration, connected insights, and customer experience. We help them maximize their returns from their cloud investments by building impactful and disruptive cloud-based offerings. We understand legacy infrastructure and applications, having been in the business for over two decades. This puts us in a strong position to modernize legacy applications through the cloud, SaaS, and microservices building blocks.

In recognition of our proven success in cloud transformation, we’re delighted to announce that we’ve been named by Clutch as one of the top Cloud Consultants in 2020! Clutch is a company list resource that helps connect businesses with the best-fit agencies or consultants they need for their next big business challenge. Clutch cuts through disorganized market research by collecting client feedback and analyzing industry data, arming businesses with the insights and analysis they need to connect and tackle challenges with confidence.

We’re delighted to have harnessed cloud to help businesses improve their results across KPIs such as employee productivity, operational efficiency, growth, and profitability.

6-Step Framework for Your Cloud Strategy

Cloud adoption just keeps on growing and it’s time to take control. Gartner predicts “By 2021, more than half of global enterprises already using cloud today will adopt an all-in cloud strategy.” Nevertheless, just moving your workloads to the cloud does not make them more efficient for your business. When you decide to embark on a cloud journey, you need to have a cloud strategy in place.

A cloud strategy defines the business outcomes you are looking for, and how you are going to get there. It also explores your end goals and motivation for adopting the cloud. Your deciding factors could be many – cost, innovation, your need for business growth, keep up with your competitors. You also need to define business outcomes, establish governance, and control.

Strategies to transform your business into the digital world

The key component of a cloud strategy is a framework so you can evaluate the benefits and challenges of adopting the cloud approach.

Here’s a six-step framework for a successful cloud strategy:

  • Identify and understand the key area where cloud can deliver business benefits for your organization
  • Plan and optimize your cloud strategy
  • Understand common cloud challenges and how to overcome them
  • Identify and develop cloud competencies
  • Prepare your organization for the shift
  • Learn the capabilities of the integrated products that can manage the cloud

Let’s take a look at a few cloud computing strategies:

  • What type of cloud: A careful consideration should be done while selecting the cloud – Private cloud or public cloud or hybrid. You need to understand and evaluate the pros and cons of each available option.
  • Plan your budget: According to what type of cloud you choose to fit your business needs, choose your IT support backbone. You also have to invest in hiring the proper workforce for cloud development.
  • Value your options and choose: Most businesses view the cloud as an enabler of process improvement and a means of reducing costs. You need to see what do you want the cloud to accomplish and what your business will gain from the shift?
  • Technology: After you have done considering your needs and the budget and resources available for your cloud shift, you need to look at the best technology stack available.
  • Choose the right cloud service provider: Most cloud service providers offers hosting needs. Keeping in mind your go-to-market strategy, choose a cloud vendor that is a one-stop-shop for all your cloud-based needs.

Trigent can help you develop the right cloud solution to transform your business. Through our Cloud Adoption Maturity Model, we determine the maturity of your organization’s cloud adoption.

With our Cloud Advisory Services, we assess your current IT infrastructure, the applications you use, costs, and resources. We help you adopt a cloud-first strategy and deployment models and then chart out-migration road-maps with minimal disruption time.

Derive true business benefits with us. Watch this explainer video to explore how our cloud solutions define and complement your cloud strategy.

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?

When Will Cloud Security Stop Being an Area of Concern?

Any discussion around cloud infrastructure services at some or the other hits a raw nerve – one that has to do with cloud security. There is no question that cloud computing is the most revolutionary trend in the digital era. Forecasts remain positive with analysts seeing revenues growing almost four times as fast for the cloud services market. These forecasts are triggered by the positives that cloud infrastructure offers including, anytime access, faster time to market and of course, cost advantage. Yet, when it comes down to taking the final step, CIOs and security officers are vexed. Their concerns, if we have to sum it up in one sentence, relates to the loss of control associated with the cloud. For decision makers, the cloud’s security ambiguity makes them nervous. They are used to protected security networks sitting in their respective premises and the cloud is a little too nebulous.

For example, a sales manager sitting in the comfort of his home logs into the enterprise network, which resides on the cloud. He is accessing data from the secure network, to close a customer deal. This is digital transformation for you. But for the IT manager who is responsible for information security, the feeling is slight different, “Every time someone logs into the network from a device, I feel as though my insides have been exposed. It is a feeling of vulnerability, which simply makes no sense!’

Are you in control of your cloud journey?

His reaction stems from the fact that the cloud does not provide visibility into the cloud service providers’ processes and security procedures. There are of course reassurances, but none that can satisfactorily assuage the fears of data compromise or leakage – both of which can be disastrous for a company. Because of these concerns, companies vacillate between ignoring security issues in the cloud to ignoring the cloud itself. Turning away from the cloud, during tight IT budgets, can also be a challenge.

The best approach to adopting cloud infrastructure minus the worries is a holistic one. This requires looking at enterprise data in a structured manner and deciding which data should be moved to the cloud and which needs to reside on-premise. There are also some questions that need answers such as:

  1. How will data be protected during transit, storage and when in use?
  2. How to ensure security when data is being accessed on devices such as smartphones?
  3. What are the security measures that are built into the cloud architecture?
  4. How to ensure that private cloud service providers are compliant with security and regulatory requirements.
  5. Will adding security measures impact the overall cost benefit from cloud infrastructure?

These questions and many more like this stand in the way of cloud adoption. The IT managers who are responsible for budgets understand the value of cloud infrastructure. However, they need help to ensure that all questions related to security are answered in a way that makes complete business sense to them and their managers.

Trigent provides end-to-end cloud security solutions that meet privacy, compliance and business needs. Trigent’s Cloud Security Services range from Vulnerability Assessments to Security Advisory Services to Security monitoring and everything in between. Get in touch with us to know more about Trigent’s Cloud Security Services.

Cloud-based Transportation Management System: A Game Changer in Logistics Industry

Read how you can make your TMS more competitive.

Technological advances have brought rapid changes to the transportation and logistics sector.
For businesses with complex supply chains, a cloud-based TMS can unlock new levels of efficiency, improve opportunities for automation and data consistency.

According to a new market report published by Credence Research, Inc., “Transportation Management Systems Market” the global transportation management systems market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.8% during the forecast period 2015 – 2022.

Benefits of TMS

  • Plan, manage and optimize the daily operations of transportation across geographies
  • Reduce invoice errors by automating the freight payment and audit processes
  • Provide transport intelligence to improve service delivery and reduce cost
  • Increase delivery reliability through collaboration across all modes and providers

Cloud-based Transportation Management System

TMS is not a new concept, but when hosted in the cloud (often as SaaS), is still new to the Shipping industry. With SaaS TMS, there are no costly upgrades, businesses have access to complete and accurate information, and collaboration is faster.

This next-generation of cloud-based TMS gives remarkable benefits to:

  • Shippers – Can gain a global view of transportation in real-time, including order information for each vehicle and its routing progress.
  • Supply chain managers – Streamlining all supply chain activities and make better decisions based on real-time data.
  • Vendors – By eliminating the labor and upfront investment that traditional software implementations require.
  • Logistic Service Providers (LSPs) – Seamlessly connect with their network, optimize all web-based transport management system modes, provide the proper metrics needed to manage their businesses.

Trigent enables “logistics–as-a-service” (SaaS) business models for TMS providers. Our services facilitate flexible integrations with other key business processes to optimize all operations.

Our cloud-based TMS services provide flexibility and scalability, as well as standardized and harmonized processes across the whole organization, which is especially important for LSPs or carriers who have grown through acquisitions, and currently, rely on a patchwork of legacy systems.

Successfully Delivered 30+ Digital Transformation Projects in the Last 10 Years

For the modernization of legacy TMS applications, we start by understanding your unique business requirements and help create a roadmap. By establishing a phase-wise project plan, reinforced with industry best practices and structured processes, the migration will be well planned, executed, and supported. Read more about our Cloud Transformation services.

Using a cloud-based transportation management system will help your supply chain operate the best it can. Embrace SaaS TMS and stay ahead of the competition with Trigent.

Single or Multi-cloud?

A recent study by 451 Research indicates that nearly a third of large organizations work with four or more cloud vendors, making one wonder whether multi-cloud is the future of cloud computing. The recent acquisition by Google of Orbitera, a platform that supports multi-cloud commerce, shows that Google recognizes that multi-cloud environments are the future. In a market estimated by Gartner to be worth $240 billion next year, multi-cloud creates a new front in the so-called “cloud computing wars.” This can only be good news for those businesses looking for flexibility, cost savings, and ultimately better solutions.

It appears that organizations that prefer multiple cloud providers have very logical reasons for this. They use multiple cloud providers to support specific applications or workloads. For example, a core application may need more resilience to perform when power is lost or expand to capacity and another department within the same organization may need the cloud to enhance productivity. Having one single cloud solution may compromise its outcome, which is probably why large companies with multiple functions may end up with several clouds. Another reason, as per a report by Ovum, seems to be overall dissatisfaction with a single cloud service provider. Key reasons cited include poor service performance and a lack of personalized support.

Related: We build impactful cloud solutions that solve challenging business problems.

One more reason could be that companies vary of keeping all their applications and workflows in one single cloud, because it can leave them vulnerable and reduce their pricing negotiation powers with the provider, in the long term.

While the logic behind a multi-cloud environment may seem sensible, the fact remains that it can be difficult to jostle between clouds. While cloud providers make it easy to move applications to their platforms, leaving it is not easy, to ensure that their business is not reduced to a price-sensitive commodity.

Also, some organizations are worried about the downtime involved in moving petabytes of data

Many organizations are rightly concerned about the downtime involved in moving petabytes of data between cloud providers. Fortunately, the same patented Active Data Replication technology that all the major cloud vendors offer to make it simple for customers to move to the cloud can also be used to migrate data between the clouds.

The ramifications of this are huge. While Amazon Web Services (AWS) remains the dominant player in the space, businesses wanting the freedom to juggle multiple cloud services and avoid vendor lock-in may well help the other players to catch up.

Comments welcome!

When to Opt For AWS DynamoDB?

If the latest in cloud technology interests you, then this piece on serverless computing should make for an interesting read. Plus, a bonus video on leveraging the serverless cloud to improve business agility.

Amazon DynamoDB is a fully managed NoSQL database service that provides quick and predictable performance with scalability and is offered as part of Amazon Web Services’ (AWS), cloud service platform.

DynamoDB takes off the administrative burdens of operating and scaling a distributed database so that users need not have to worry about hardware provisioning and a software patch update.

DynamoDB uses the NoSQL database data model and derives the name from Dynamo, but DynamoDB has a different core level implementation.

DynamoDB Web service allows developers to purchase a service based on throughput rather than on storage.

In DynamoDB, tables, items, and attributes are the core components. A table is a set of items, and each item is a set of attributes. DynamoDB uses primary keys to uniquely identify each item in a table.

Following table lists the difference between DynamoDB and regular SQL Database:

NoSQL Database SQL Database
Non-relational database Relational Databases (RDBMS)
Document-based, key-value pairs, graph databases Table-based databases
Schema is dynamic Schema is predefined
Queries are focused on collection of documents and referred as UnQL (Unstructured Query Language) SQL ( structured query language ) for defining and altering the data
No foreign key concept Foreign key concept to refer secondary table
DynamoDB MongoDB, BigTable are NoSQL databases MS-SQL, Oracle, MySQL are SQL databases

Sample Table – Person in DynamoDB:

When should one go for AWS DynamoDB?

Today’s web-based applications generate and consume huge amounts of data. For example, an online game/blog might start out with only a few hundreds of end-users and a light database workload consisting of 10 writes per second and 50 reads per second. However, if the game/blog becomes successful in the market, it may instantly grow and used by millions of end-users and expect tens or even hundreds of thousands of writes and reads per second. The application may also expect to create terabytes (TB) of data write per day based on the popularity quotient. Developing or implementing such applications using Amazon DynamoDB enables developers to start small capacity for a table as the requirements to continue to function well when expands its end-user base in size/volume without incurring application downtime. Above all, the applications should be in AWS.

Advantages of DynamoDB:

  • Scalable – User can store unlimited amount of data.
  • Distributed – DynamoDB scales horizontally by expanding a single table over multiple server
  • Cost Effective – One year free tier allows more than 40 million database operations/month and pricing is based on throughput (read/write per second) rather than storage
  • Automatic data replication – All data items are stored on Solid State Disks (SSDs) and  automatically replicated across multiple availability zones in a region
  • Secure – DynamoDB uses proven secured methods to authenticate users and prevent unauthorized data access

Disadvantages of DynamoDB:

  • Deployable only on AWS and cannot be installed on individual desktops/servers
  • Queries – Querying data is extremely limited
  • Table Joins – Joins are impossible
  • No Triggers
  • No foreign keys concept to refer to other table items
  • No server side scripts

 

Understanding Microsoft Azure Storage

Before you understand Microsoft Azure’s storage capabilities, here’s a primer on Microsoft’s multi-tenant cloud-based directory and identity management service, Azure Active Directory.

Cloud storage platform is designed for Internet-scale applications. It is highly reliable, available, and scalable. On average, we can manage more than 40 trillion stored objects and 3.5 million requests/sec. As a result of its scalability, it is possible to store a large volume of data. If you combine this with the necessary system allocation, you can achieve remarkable good performance. Window storages are especially durable, in my opinion. Remember however that the cost of storage is key to cloud storage, and we need to pay for both storage and transfer bandwidth on the basis of actual usage. The data and Microsoft Azure storage are available via the REST interface, so we can access the same from all programming languages.

The Microsoft Azure platform divides into four types of standard storages which work with different scenarios:

  1. Blobs
  2. Tables
  3. Queues
  4. Files

It can expose via REST APIs and with multiple client libraries like .Net, C++, Java, Node.js, Android, etc.

According to 2015 data, Azure storage is available in 19 different regions globally.

Microsoft Azure available in different regions

Image1: Azure storage available in different regions

Blobs

Blob storage is useful for sharing documents, images, video, music and to store raw data/logs.

We can interact blob storage with REST interface (Put, Get, and Delete).

Code sample:

// Retrieve storage account from connection string.
 CloudStorageAccount storageAccount = CloudStorageAccount.Parse(CloudConfigurationManager.GetSetting("StorageConnectionString"));
 // Create the blob client.
 CloudBlobClient blobClient = storageAccount.CreateCloudBlobClient();
 // Retrieve a reference to a container.
 CloudBlobContainer container = blobClient.GetContainerReference("deepakcontainer");
 // Create the container if it doesn't already exist.
 container.CreateIfNotExists();
 // Retrieve reference to a blob named "myblob".
 CloudBlockBlob blockBlob = container.GetBlockBlobReference("deepakblob");
 // Create or overwrite the "myblob" blob with contents from a local file.
 using(var fileStream = System.IO.File.OpenRead(@ "pathmyfile")) {
 blockBlob.UploadFromStream(fileStream);
 }

In Code we are referencing to a storage account. We need to create a blob client proxy which will interact with blob object. Then we can upload from the client to the cloud. We need to create a container to organize the blob. If container is not available, we need to create a container the first time we use it.

There are three types of blobs: Block blobs, Append blobs, and Page blobs (disks).

Block blobs are optimized for streaming and storing cloud objects, and are a good choice for storing documents, media files, backups etc.

Append blobs are similar to block blobs, but are optimized for append operations. An append blob can be updated only by adding a new block at the end. Append blobs are a good choice for scenarios such as logging, where new data needs to be written only at the end of the blob.

Page blobs are optimized for representing IaaS disks and supporting random writes. An Azure virtual machine network attached to IaaS disk is a Virtual Hard Disk stored as a page blob.

Tables

This is a massively scalable NoSql key/value storage. It is very useful for storing a large volume of metadata. This storage platform automatically load balances between new tables as you allocate more resources. It is very scalable. Azure tables are ideal for storing structured, non-relational data.

We can use Table storage to store flexible datasets, such as user data for web applications, address books, device information, and any other type of metadata that your service requires. You can store any number of entities in a table, and a storage account may contain any number of tables, up to the capacity limit of the storage account. We can Access data using the OData protocol and LINQ queries with WCF Data Service .NET Libraries.

Code sample:

// Retrieve the storage account from the connection string.
 CloudStorageAccount storageAccount = CloudStorageAccount.Parse(CloudConfigurationManager.GetSetting("StorageConnectionString"));
 // Create the table client.CloudTableClient tableClient = storageAccount.CreateCloudTableClient();
 // Retrieve a reference to the table.CloudTable table = tableClient.GetTableReference("deepak");
 // Create the table if it doesn't exist.
 table.CreateIfNotExists();

Queues

It is an efficient solution for reliable applications, low latency and it is a high throughput messaging system. It basically uses decouple components and uses web role to worker role communication. It also implements scheduling of asynchronous tasks. It stores a large number of messages, in any format, of up to 64 KB. The maximum time that a message can remain in the queue is seven days.

Code sample:

// Retrieve storage account from connection string.
 CloudStorageAccount storageAccount = CloudStorageAccount.Parse(CloudConfigurationManager.GetSetting("StorageConnectionString"));
 // Create the queue client.
 CloudQueueClient queueClient = storageAccount.CreateCloudQueueClient();
 // Retrieve a reference to a queue.
 CloudQueue queue = queueClient.GetQueueReference("deepakqueue");
 // Create the queue if it doesn't already exist.
 queue.CreateIfNotExists();
 // Create a message and add it to the queue.
 CloudQueueMessage message = new CloudQueueMessage("Hello, Trigent");
 queue.AddMessage(message);

File

We can use file storage to share the file. It is very useful to move on-premises application to cloud.

It support REST and SMP protocol access to same file share.

File storage contains the below components:

Code sample:

// Create a CloudFileClient object for credentialed access to File storage.
 CloudFileClient fileClient = storageAccount.CreateCloudFileClient();
 // Get a reference to the file share we created previously.
 CloudFileShare share = fileClient.GetShareReference("logs");
 // Ensure that the share exists.
 if (share.Exists()) {
 // Get a reference to the root directory for the share.
 CloudFileDirectory rootDir = share.GetRootDirectoryReference();
 // Get a reference to the directory we created previously.
 CloudFileDirectory sampleDir = rootDir.GetDirectoryReference("CustomLogs");
 // Ensure that the directory exists.
 if (sampleDir.Exists()) {
 // Get a reference to the file we created previously.
 CloudFile file = sampleDir.GetFileReference("Log1.txt");
 // Ensure that the file exists.
 if (file.Exists()) {
 // Write the contents of the file to the console window.
 Responsed.Write(file.DownloadTextAsync().Result);
 }
 }
 }

Speak to our cloud experts to learn what Microsoft Azure can do for your organization.