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Automation helps blaze the trail to cloud adoption

Alec_Wagner

Have you noticed that a lot of the conversation about cloud computing focuses on “selling” the cloud? Much of it is rife with promises of efficiency, agility and cost savings, but not much of it details the actual steps it takes to move to a cloud-based delivery model. How can your company make a painless, non-disruptive transition to cloud service delivery?

 

You can’t just move to the cloud by diving in head-first. A brand new study from 451 research/TheInfoPro found that 64 percent of respondents were still engaged in datacenter consolidation, standardization and virtualization, with just 26 percent engaged in active datacenter automation projects. Moving to the cloud is a process, and laying the groundwork is key to making the process go smoothly.

 

Automation clears the path to cloud adoption

 

For most companies, automation is nothing new; smart IT departments have been boosting efficiency, saving time, and cutting costs by automating data center tasks for years. Automating routine processes like provisioning and patching is a no-brainer, and using virtualization to automate and consolidate infrastructure is commonplace.

 

More advanced data center automation provides a foundation for transforming your IT shop as it moves to a cloud-based delivery model. Some quickly realized benefits of automation include:

 

  • Consistency: Standardizing tools and processes boosts consistency and accuracy in IT processes while reducing the human error inherent in manual processes.
  • Auditing/compliance: Automation provides the information needed to support compliance reporting and auditing.
  • Problem resolution: Automation tools can bolster communication among IT teams and allow them to speed up response times.
  • License consolidation: Automation can be a catalyst for centralizing tools, which has the side effect of enabling IT to sunset certain products, which saves money and improves operations.

Three steps to automation

 

So what are the building blocks of automation? These three key phases build on each other:

 

  • Automate tasks: Automating tasks at the server, database, storage, and network levels will lower manual efforts, reduce errors, lower risks, and save time.
  • Automate processes: Building consistent and repeatable workflows without manual intervention will enable agility, empower visibility, enforce discipline, and apply best practices consistently.
  • Automate cloud service delivery: Focusing on the service lifecycle can reduce delivery time to hours instead of months.

To find out more, download IT Process Automation: Moving from Basics to Best Practices.

 

Related link: How automation and unification speed up the testing process—without sacrificing quality

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About the Author

Alec_Wagner

Alec Wagner is a longtime writer & editor, enterprise IT insider, and (generally) fearless digital nomad.

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