Here’s What You Missed at CloudHealth Connect

Ben Topolski
Director of Strategic Alliances
Published:
Nov. 9, 2016
3 minute read

New York City’s first CloudHealth Connect meetup took place last week, with engaging panel discussions and breakout sessions led by industry experts. The theme? Secrets of Cloud Trailblazers. There was a mix of experience in the crowd that made for a very interactive evening, and the content was too good not to share. Here’s a recap of what you missed, for those who couldn’t make it. (Join our LinkedIn group to avoid being left out next time!)

Our speaker lineup included: Shaown Nandi, Head of Infrastructure and Cloud at Dow Jones and News Corp. NA; Adam Japhet, Head of Technology Services Architecture, Scholastic; Brian Ott, Cloud Technology Partners (CTP) VP of Shared Services; and Joe Kinsella, CloudHealth Technologies CTO and Founder. The evening focused on three key topics...

 

Hybrid / Multi-Cloud

Panelists offered perspectives around the definition of hybrid cloud, and strategies for leveraging multiple cloud environments. Scholastic defines hybrid cloud as multiple public providers or “hybrid-public cloud.” Dow Jones and Cloud Technology Partners, through their customers, view hybrid as extending into on-prem and across public cloud. They then discussed some management strategies:

  • Identify where a given workload works best -- on prem, in the cloud -- and which specific cloud provider is best suited for the workload.
  • Work across multiple public cloud providers so you aren’t locked into a cloud or technology, as business conditions may change.
  • Design workloads that can run across multiple cloud providers. This limits exposure and risk from regional outages, or impacts to quality of service.

All agreed that there is no one solution that fits every business. Organizations need to evaluate different strategies, based on their needs, for flexibility, risk mitigation, and cost. They must also consider their own technologies; for example, if your technology stack is built on Linux and Java, you are most likely going to gravitate towards AWS and Google. If you are built on a Microsoft .net or leveraging Microsoft solutions, many will lean towards Microsoft Azure.

Cost Management

A show of hands quickly showed that cloud cost management is a common pain point. The panel dug into this topic, providing insight on the tools they are using and their strategies for managing cost and visibility.

  • Organizations frequently try to manage cost centrally, and products today provide more granularity and visibility at a micro level. There are many small levers that directly impact cost if pulled. While cost can be managed centrally, you still need to distribute responsibility. It's a tradeoff: the cloud provides agility, but it also creates management challenges.
  • Cloud providers offer cost management solutions, but they don’t scale well and don’t work across a hybrid cloud model. Automation offers a way to manage costs as your cloud footprint grows. Leveraging automation and policy allows you to distribute responsibility while maintaining control.
  • Using the public cloud is cheaper, but only if you are actively managing the costs.

Governance and Compliance

CTP’s Brian Ott started this session off by describing governance and compliance. Governance means putting controls and monitoring in place, typically around security. This can also include automated policies to make sure people are following the right processes. Compliance typically comes into play in regulatory spaces around areas such as SOX, PCI, HIPAA or OCC.

Governance helps you meet compliance requirements. All panelists agreed you must define your governance model to meet specific industry compliance requirements, but that there is a challenge in creating a governance model that allows you to be agile and flexible. Two panelists said their cloud adoption was driven by agility and the ability to move quickly in a digital world. If you spend too much time on governance and restrict the ability to innovate, you will lose out to your competitors. It’s a challenge that requires a risk analysis: what happens if you don’t have the right governance? Consider regulatory compliance, security, etc. versus the ability to quickly innovate.

Don’t miss the next CloudHealth Connect!

We’ve now been to New York and San Francisco -- and we hope to visit other cities in the near future. If you are interested in participating in general community discussions, or attending our next event, request to join our LinkedIn group.

A big thanks to our speakers, Shaown Nandi, Adam Japhet, Brian Ott, and Joe Kinsella; our sponsors, Alert Logic, Cloud Technology Partners, and DataDog; and everyone else who was in attendance.