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Cloud Computing Services Are Not a Commodity

A couple of years back, conversations about cloud computing services were all around complexity, security and risk. What a difference a couple of years makes; this incredibly powerful way of delivering a secure, scalable IT resource has now become an accepted mainstream approach for organisations, whether it’s public, private, or hybrid. While the industry has come a long way, the problem now is the rise of an equally shaky set of assumptions. Many industry consultants talk about cloud as though it is a destination. The cloud isn’t a place where you go to. It is a part of your mission-critical business, and there is no single endpoint. Another misconception is that cloud computing services can be purchased right off the shelf – as though cloud computing services are a commodity. But most companies, big and small, have more complex IT requirements than an off-the-shelf solution could ever handle. You’re not…

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Agility & flexibility key to smooth holiday sales

It’s hard to believe that we are once again in the lead up to the holiday season and saying goodbye to the last of the Autumn days. As people world-wide are getting ready for the holiday period, November starts the countdown to the end of 2018 with one of biggest sales events of the year- Black Friday and Cyber Monday. In a shopping tradition that began in the US but has now spread across the world, millions of consumers are getting ready to hit the malls and go online to uncover the best seasonal deals (myself included)! Last year alone, in the US, we saw that digital transactions on Cyber Monday reached a record high $6.59 billion, a 15.8% increase from the previous year, with online sales overtaking bricks and mortar shopping for the first time ever! As people increasingly opt to shop from the comfort of their own homes,…

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Powering Potential: The Case for Business Diversity

I was recently invited by the Westminster eForum to give a keynote presentation on diversity in the workplace, exploring the commercial benefits of having a diverse talent pool. This was as an opportunity to engage with some of the tech industry’s leading voices on this matter and shed light on the benefits of an inclusive workforce – a topic that is close to home for Cogeco Peer 1 as we are in the fortunate position of having women occupy three key senior leadership roles in the company, which is all too rare, especially in the tech sector. In considering the topic, the first question I addressed was – does diversity have commercial benefits and make a business more profitable? The answer is unequivocally yes. Both the research and my own personal experience back that assertion up. Among the research, these two findings stand out for me: According to a global…

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Transitioning to a Hybrid IT Environment is Easier Than You Think

A lot of what we’ve explored so far in the move to a middle ground between fully automated cloud computing and traditional on-premise IT has been the big, disruptive elements. The good news is that strategies for a Hybrid IT environment can incorporate much of what’s worked for technology professionals in the past. Along with cloud computing, most established companies have had to navigate through waves of technological change, including mobile computing, social media, and the Internet of Things. Hybrid IT differs from these sea changes in that it’s already here — you don’t necessarily “adopt” it as much as orchestrate it for a set of desired business outcomes. PLAN YOUR TRANSITION TO A HYBRID IT ENVIRONMENT Define ‘mission critical’ to build the right business case: IT departments always need to get buy-in from the CIO and the senior leadership team to drive meaningful change. Be prepared to explain how…

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Happy New Year!

Yes – you read that correctly.  Here at Cogeco Peer 1 September 1 signaled the start of our new fiscal year.  And, as the new year is a time of fresh starts, what better time for me to hit the road for a mini-tour across North America and Canada where I visited our offices in Atlanta and Toronto – meeting the teams and sharing our plans for the next year and beyond. The conversations I have had recently suggest that the 12 months ahead will be marked as a year of change. Digital transformation is an ongoing process, as is the arrival and adoption of technologies such as blockchain, machine learning, artificial intelligence, hybrid cloud and SD-WAN. Move over big data and welcome to data lakes (where storage is king!). Our team, along with a group of influential CIOs, took on some of these topics at the recent Canadian CIO…

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The ‘Network First’ Thinking That Makes SD-WAN A Top Business Priority

The new secret ingredient to developing a successful business emerged so gradually most people might not have noticed. It started sometime around the moment we all began searching for information online through our desktops, rather than hunting in filing cabinets and banker’s boxes in a storage room. It got worse around the time we needed anytime, anywhere access to almost everything connected to our jobs via smartphone, tablet or wearable device. Now it’s just a fact of life – even though it won’t be taught in most business schools or marketed as a selling point by CEOs. Developing a successful business is no longer just a matter of finding a great location, hiring the smartest people and offering products the market wants. Developing a successful business requires network connectivity you can count on. And the most flexible, secure and fastest way to get that connectivity is through SD-WAN. Here’s the…

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