Achieving Automation of IT Services Through The Cloud

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1 Achieving Automation of IT Services Through The Cloud

2 Achieving Automation of IT Services Through The Cloud The cloud offers efficiency, agility, and cost savings. However, cloud often forces IT s role in the organization to undergo a major shift, encompassing private, public and traditional IT. Transition to the cloud involves many projects to automate IT services, infrastructure processes, business processes, and service delivery. It is accomplished by systematically completing one project then proceeding to the next and then the next. This article explains the steps necessary to achieve the automation of IT services through the cloud, with minimal disruption. A Strategy for Automation is Required Businesses need to increase the efficiency and agility of IT departments to keep pace with the demands of customers, vendors, employees, and competition -- specifically, to immediately address operational concerns and deliver applications faster. Automation is the foundation for delivering IT applications and services in the data center in this user-centric manner, whether in a traditional on-premise or cloud environment. A strategy for enterprise-grade automation is necessary. This strategy consists of well-developed policies and procedures, a strict adherence to those procedures, and an understanding of processes. The automation strategy also provides two reassurances. The first is directed towards management, that the transition will occur gradually over time to avoid system interruption and to be certain that components are effective. The second reassurance is directed towards employees -- that their value to the business increases when they produce more in less time, or can reclaim time to

3 perform higher-value tasks through the automation of tasks and processes. Four Benefits of IT Automation Through the Cloud 1. Automation allows for consistency and standardization of processes, thereby eliminating time-consuming, error-prone tasks and reducing risks that might have previously resulted from manual processes. Basic tasks are reliably and proactively performed, keeping your IT environment ahead of the curve while reducing downtime and costs. 2. Customers and employees have a higher degree of satisfaction. Employees realize they have the tools to perform better, and the reliability of knowing that their systems will not crash in the middle of a task. IT department employees can move faster, and focus on other, higher-level projects. This better use of resources increases their contributions and value to the organization. Customers may not define the reason they like the business, but feel favorably that their orders and complaints are dealt with immediately. 3. The information required for audits, compliance, license consolidation, and reports is more readily available. 4. New capital expenditures are greatly reduced or eliminated because of the increased ROI from capacity recapture of resources and existing assets, thin provisioning of storage systems, improved server utilization, reduced outage and security incidents, and other economies delivered by automation of routine tasks. In addition to a clear ROI with a short time to value, the ROI increases with time, as more and more processes are automated.

4 Defining and Implementing the Three-Phase Automation Strategy Each business needs input from staff in the various IT departments to determine which tasks, functions, and processes use the most time and energy. These are the objects of your data center automation. Then it should be decided which tools to use based on their effectiveness, cost, expandability, and value to the business. Phase One: The Automation of Operational Tasks The goal of Phase One is twofold: to maintain security and availability of IT applications and the basic infrastructure through measurement and correction; and to automate, optimize, and streamline time-consuming, repetitive, everyday tasks which may include: Compliance/control/centralization of software licensing. Updating applications. Configurations and operating systems. Patch management across 100s and 1,000s of devices. Provisioning of servers, storage, databases, networks, and virtual machines. For example, HP Operations Orchestration has thousands of automation scripts that automate routine tasks and processes in IT e.g.; remediation, release deployment, provisioning, etc. This results in more resources available for new projects. Phase Two: The Automation of IT Processes

5 The goal of Phase Two is to eliminate repetitive tasks, direct processes across the entire data center, and automate particular processes such as troubleshooting, incident management, and/or the disaster recovery process. These processes demand much time and effort by the IT department, relative to overall system health and productivity. When these automated processes work in the background, end user and customer satisfaction improve, because their requests are fulfilled faster and with less effort on their part. Phase Three: The Automation of Service Delivery The goal of Phase Three is to enable fast access and faster response times to application services and the infrastructure through self-service environments. Faster response times can result in actual delivery time measured in hours, not days. These may include: Cloud orchestration. Self-healing incident remediation. IT service request fulfillment. Application release automation. Application orchestration, including such applications as SAP. Database provisioning and management. Disaster recovery. In Closing Comport, an HP Platinum Partner and Gold Cloud Builder-certified partner, provides innovative, individualized solutions to transport

6 the traditional IT-structured business to IT automation in the cloud with products, experience, and excellent certifications. The benefits of achieving automation of IT services through the cloud go beyond higher levels of efficiency and cost savings for the IT department. The business experiences savings in capital expenditures and operating costs while benefiting from greater employee productivity, increased ROI, and more available IT resources for other uses. Employees experience satisfaction from reliable, effective tools to perform tasks more efficiently in less time, and derive a greater sense of accomplishment that translates into more productivity. Comport s experience and deep relationship with HP, the market- leader in both Cloud and automation software according to Forrester (HP was rated the top vendor in private cloud management, November, 2013) allows your business to achieve these benefits with the least amount of disruption, at a pace appropriate to the budget and infrastructure of the business. HP s open architectures incorporate non-hp solutions as well, so one consistent software interface provides management across vendors. Over 5,000 prebuilt best practice operations, workflows, and integrations, including content for virtualization and cloud as well as a wide range of HP and third-party management and monitoring tools, dev/ops resources, and support for physical server and storage platforms helps you enter the process more easily, with a fast ROI. Comport will help you build and implement your roadmap to Cloud, with our Cloud Center of Excellence available for demonstrations and proof-of-concepts.

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