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Why work with a cloud partner?

Thanks to commoditized cloud offerings such as Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services, organizations can easily link their public cloud to their on-premises data center. But the migration process can be architecturally complex and time-consuming to manage, not to mention costly when putting the right talent in place. That’s why we’re seeing a lot of organizations opting for a managed cloud solution, which allows them to offload the responsibilities of migration and management (and even brokering the entire infrastructure) to a cloud partner. So why should you consider a managed approach over a DIY solution? For many, it comes down to costs. Managed cloud is designed to scale with your business – that means you pay for management services only when your cloud services are active. Without a doubt, that’s a strong draw for most organizations, but it’s certainly not the only one. Azure and AWS allow you to take…

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UK businesses are suffering from SD-WOT Syndrome

In today’s competitive landscape, most businesses are in the midst of some form of digital transformation initiative. With growing data volumes and more applications distributed across data centers and cloud environments than ever before, industry-leading technologies such as software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) have emerged as the next generation of networking solutions. However, it seems, amongst UK businesses there is a cloud of confusion and a lack of understanding around the implementation of the technology. In an industry characterized by rapid change, SD-WAN technologies play a pivotal role in wider digital transformation programmes, empowering thousands of businesses and providing them with the agility they need to stay ahead of the competition. Yet, it manifests, that many businesses are overwhelmed by this new technology and are not fully reaping the rewards that SD-WAN has to offer. According to a new study conducted by Cogeco Peer 1, UK businesses are suffering from…

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As the cloud turns: Separating hype from value

Has technology ever reminded you a little of a soap opera? It’s on every day, it’s constantly evolving, and it can come packed with a lot of drama along the way. This last part is especially true when unexpected challenges emerge — or if you don’t have a clear understanding of the benefits and challenges that come with the right technology solutions for your business. Cloud has had its fair share of time in the technology spotlight for good reason. It isn’t just another business model — it takes a leading role in driving strategic digital transformation initiatives and unlocking a lot of potential for business growth. Research firm Gartner predicts the global public cloud services market will grow 17.3% in 2019 to total $206.2 billion, with demand for integrated IaaS and PaaS offerings driving “the next wave of cloud infrastructure adoption.” Looking at cloud as part of your business…

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Six tips to become your company’s IT rock star

Long gone are the days when IT was hidden away in a backroom, unknown to the rest of the organization — except, of course, when something went wrong. In today’s modern organization, IT not only keeps the lights on, but is also leading the way in which we do business and drive new revenue streams. However, the IT department is still often the unsung hero, quietly working in the background to make sure it’s ‘business as usual.’ If your role and responsibilities still seem to sit in the shadows, how can you level up in your career and get noticed by leadership? In other words, how do you become the ‘rock star’ of your IT department and, in turn, your organization? Here are six actionable tips to get noticed by your management team: 1. Don’t just perform — Study your theory If your organization offers training (or has the budget…

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Mission-critical IT: When your business is your digital delivery, failure is not an option

From companies scaling up with enhanced technology to digital-native eCommerce and app-based service providers (think Uber and Airbnb), there’s no room for downtime, speed delays or security mishaps. Fail, and you’ll face the consequences of sub-par customer experience and dwindling attention spans. In today’s current landscape, customer expectations and technological advances are dictating the pace of IT changes in organizations. In fact, a thought-provoking study from Microsoft revealed that the average consumer attention span has dropped to eight seconds — one second less than the attention span of a goldfish! In this ‘swipe to the next’ era, it’s critical to grab attention as quickly as possible, so if your site or app doesn’t load fast enough, customers will likely move on. And if your systems go down, so will your business. In a 2018 report, Gartner reported that customer trust could be irreparably damaged if your 24/7 online operations are…

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ROI and cloud: Is your business maximizing its potential?

If a primary objection of your cloud strategy is cost savings, moving a few workloads to the cloud in a piecemeal fashion likely won’t give you the returns you’re hoping for. And if you don’t do your due diligence to understand how user seats and data transfers will impact your monthly bill, you can end up with sticker shock. Looking at cloud as a ‘journey’ toward achieving specific business goals can help you better measure the return on your investment — both quantifiable and qualitative. Understanding the ROI equation While the CapEx versus OpEx debate is part of the ROI equation, there are other factors to consider, such as revenue opportunities related to increased agility and time-to-market. It’s why cloud should be part of a well-planned digital transformation strategy, not just a way to shave a few dollars off your OpEx budget. Determining cloud ROI has become more complex, in…

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The true costs of CapEx vs OpEx in a cloud environment

For leadership, when it comes to rolling out new technologies on the digital transformation journey, one of the top considerations is capital expenditures (CapEx) versus operational expenditures (OpEx). Of course, that’s an important consideration, but it’s not the only factor to consider. The CapEx vs. OpEx debate If you design, build and deploy your own IT infrastructure, it is considered a longer-term investment and therefore the costs fall under your capital expenses (CapEx). In contrast, opting for cloud model shifts your spending to a pay-as-you-go model, like a utility bill that you pay on a monthly basis, which comes out of your day-to-day operational expenses (OpEx). For start-ups and growing businesses, the OpEx model can be a big driver of cloud adoption. But even larger and established organizations have now been increasingly leveraging the flexibility and scalability of cloud, which aside from the perceived financial benefits, offers better security, backup…

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Rising to the top through cloud-based digital transformation

When it comes to IT infrastructure, ‘business as usual’ doesn’t cut it anymore. While C-suite execs may have their hands full delivering against top-line revenue objectives, they can no longer ignore the changes sweeping across the digital landscape. According to market intelligence firm IDC, the disruptive impact of digital transformation is being felt across every industry. More enterprises than ever are ready to ‘flip the switch’ and massively scale up their initiatives to secure a leadership role in the digital economy. In fact, IDC predicts that by 2020, 50% of enterprises will see the majority of their business depend on their ability to create digitally enhanced products, services and experiences. And, 70% will already be rolling out their organization-wide digital strategy. At this rate, it’s pretty clear that if businesses don’t adapt, they risk falling behind. While cutting costs or boosting efficiencies are among the much-touted benefits of digital transformation,…

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Digital Transformation Journey: Why a cloud strategy is never the endpoint

Over the years, cloud computing has become somewhat of a ‘buzz word’ when talking about digital transformation. Cloud Technology often seems to be over simplified as something that a business acquires or does once, rather than a journey or strategy requiring continuous investment. The misconception that cloud is a simple, one and done process is problematic for many of the IT decision makers I talk to. And, across regions and industries, a common issue they express is that the board level decision makers to whom they report, don’t understand the complexity or true potential of cloud computing. Too many cloud choices? There’s a huge amount of choice available within the cloud market, from public, private, and hybrid cloud to multi-cloud and hyperscale cloud – the many options can seem overwhelming. Most business leaders understand that cloud can provide enterprise-grade IT without a large investment in infrastructure, but with a proliferation…

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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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