Managed Services Could Bridge the Gap
The last few years have seen more and more technologies promising to transform the IT landscape and deliver strong business benefits. For data center professionals, hybrid cloud and Hyper-convergence have been setting the headlines and raising questions about if, when and how to adopt the technologies.
For IT heads in small and medium businesses, the question is also “have we got the skills to do it?” Hiring a specialist for the role could prove expensive, particularly as IT skills shortages are driving up salaries. And, at what stage do you need the specialist – strategy, assessment, planning, deployment, training, ongoing management. You could be facing a large salary bill if you go down the hiring route.
The Skills Barrier
However, if you decide to postpone the decision or do nothing, you could be missing out on some important benefits.
Moving to the cloud is helping many small and medium businesses reduce their costs and improve agility. And, hybrid cloud solutions that split the workload between public and private clouds help businesses protect their existing infrastructure.
The RightScale State of the Cloud survey found strong growth in hybrid cloud adoption, but also reported that lack of relevant resources and expertise was a major concern for businesses planning a move.
There’s a similar picture in Hyper-convergence. The technology promises to help data center professionals simplify infrastructure management and deal with the challenges of storage caused by the massive rise in data volumes. Hyper-convergence brings together the key IT compute, storage, networking and virtualization resources, converging them in a tightly integrated single system managed through a software layer.
However, commentators point out that access to skills in advanced virtualization, automation and resource management are potential barriers to successful Hyper-convergence.
Bridging the Gap
For a growing number of businesses, managed services are helping bridge the skills gap. And, respondents to a Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) survey saw managed service providers as a complement to their internal IT teams. Providers free the IT team for more strategic tasks, and, when a provider brings in specialist resources, there’s an opportunity for additional benefit in knowledge and skills transfer.
While businesses recognize the traditional contribution of managed service providers in managing infrastructure and reducing costs, their potential contribution is wider.
Get the Strategy Right
Moving to the cloud or adopting Hyper-convergence is a strategic decision. Managed service providers have significant experience of these technologies and can help develop a strategy that maximizes business and operational benefits while reducing costs and minimizing the impact on IT operations.
Advisers can assess your existing infrastructure and ensure your strategy takes account of management, support, disaster recovery, security and compliance issues. Some businesses have used managed service providers as virtual CIOs to assist during the critical strategy and planning stages.
Managed service providers also provide essential skilled project resources during a deployment. They use specialist tools to automate processes and reduce the time and cost of the project. In their more familiar day-to-day management role, providers monitor and manage resources using industry best practice and proactive support to maintain high availability.
So, if you’re considering a move to hybrid cloud or Hyper-convergence, don’t hold back because of skills shortages. Contact a managed service provider to bridge the gap and start delivering business benefits.
Cloud Tech Services has considerable experience and expertise in hybrid cloud and Hyper-convergence, and can offer advice on suitable solutions as well as practical support in deployment and managed services.