THE IMPORTANCE OF HYBRID CLOUD
“Whether public, private or hybrid cloud, access to the system must be simple and available from any device, security and authentication requirements for provision are concealed as much as possible. ”
In addition, the application determines the components of the IT infrastructure stack and is best suited for a public or private environment or both. “The components that are specific to our business and have no advantage in running in a shared environment are kept in a private cloud environment,” said Warwick Hutton.
A company the size of CCA has an impressive number of systems running, all from different departments they serve and performing various tasks. Many of these systems have similar operational parameters or use cases. When the cost equation is similar for public or private cloud hosting, it is not always clear which option is the best financially.
However, Warwick Hutton points out that factors other than cost alone can often influence the decision. “In general, if a large part of the company accesses an application and needs to be available on a shared platform, we prefer to simplify access from outside the corporate network.”
The very words “public” and “private” may lead us to believe that we are dealing with two hermetically-separated cyber-spaces, particularly with regard to discussions of data security and performance issues that may arise from collocation.
One of the cornerstones of cloud computing is enabling systems to connect to other networks to deliver value faster. CCA is simply a company that realizes that the hybrid cloud does not just mean having workloads in-house and others in public environments.
The Warwick Hutton team adopts a more application-based view than an infrastructure view. In particular, the multiplication of on-demand capabilities must be available in all cloud environments. “What’s important for this to become a reality is to get to the point where all your infrastructure costs are subscription-based and offer on-demand capabilities, albeit at different rates depending on the level of the subscription, services associated with it”.
Regarding the integration challenges of a hybrid cloud strategy, Warwick Hutton says the biggest challenge has been getting federated and consistent single sign-on, even though he has seen improvements recently in security offerings – federated standard.
Latency can also be a problem and dictates which applications you plan to deploy in each environment. Hybrid cloud computing models enable CCA to bring mobile user functionality closer together by leveraging the internet and the public cloud, while maintaining consistent, secure back-end architecture in the private cloud.
In fact, authentication and standardized access across all cloud computing environments is CCA’s idea of real security. For a company operating in the region covering Australia, New Zealand and parts of Southeast Asia (as many places where the telecommunications industries are very different), it is difficult to guarantee access coherent.
Warwick Hutton says, however, that things are becoming simpler. Fixed line difficulties remain in places such as Papua New Guinea, Fiji and Indonesia, but the growth of mobile data networks and the internet mean that the public network is often more reliable and less reliable, expensive than the traditional corporate network. “In fact, using a public cloud infrastructure for applications such as e-mail and office productivity has freed staff from often unreliable and overworked corporate networks,” he says.
At the end of 2013, CCA decided to optimize the use of the Office 365 architecture to provide productivity tools via a browser or native applications on any device. In the first half of 2014, the company transferred personal and team documents, CCA’s corporate intranet, social network platform, and customized applications to SharePoint Online and Azure. Recently, she also signed a five-year contract with IBM to transfer its critical SAP infrastructure to a cloud computing environment hosted at IBM’s Sydney Processing Center.
CCA wants a large part of its workforce to use the web browser and mobile applications by the end of the year, an objective that is ready to be achieved through a hybrid cloud computing approach.