One of the basic rules of doing business is to maximize efficiency while minimizing risks. Regardless of the industry, this is a major reason why the enterprise market is beginning to open up to cloud alternatives to solutions that have previously required heavy investment in capital-intensive resources like on-premises infrastructures, large-scale enterprise deployments, training and personnel.
The enterprise cloud market is a growing industry. In 2016, businesses are expected to increase their investment in SaaS platforms by 21 percent over 2015’s numbers. However, some businesses will still prefer to hold on to tried-and-tested technologies and stick with some form of hybrid between on-premises and cloud platforms. Such a hybrid deployment can often be encountered in larger enterprises where change management is not always an easy thing.
To ensure reliability, businesses will then need to implement measures that will bulletproof enterprise systems against potential vulnerabilities or inefficiencies. This can prevent mistakes and issues that can be costly. Imagine, a system downtime can cost upwards of hundreds of millions of dollars just for enterprise resource planning (ERP) enhancement gone wrong.
Applications can be deployed incorrectly or mismanaged. In some cases, these might be shrugged off as just another part of business risk. But what if we could reduce or mitigate these risks with the use of enterprise automation, high availability platforms and tighter control over enterprise data?
Panaya, a Cruise Control for ERP
If you ever spend a certain amount of time around ERP systems, you know nothing ever sails smoothly when there is a need to implement updates or enhancements, especially with the number of customizations that businesses will often require for an enterprise system to be useful. IT departments require months of testing before actual implementation goes live, and each update requires extensive code cleansing to ensure forward compatibility.
Image credit: ERP update testing dashboard, Panaya
Panaya, a cloud-based enterprise automation platform, simplifies the process by analyzing the update for any points of failure and then giving recommendations as to how these can be fixed. This eliminates the guesswork in change management, enabling your IT staff and ERP consultants to know exactly what they need to do during the upgrade cycle without having to waste time in a tedious manual bug-hunting processes.
Incapsula, the Fort Knox of Web Resilience
Service level agreements (SLAs) are an integral part of any business-to-business undertaking, and customers will usually demand nothing less than 99.999% uptime. Any downtime can result in loss of confidence and loss of revenue.
Image credit: Optimization dashboard, Incapsula
Your business will need to adopt a high availability strategy, which involves constant monitoring, ensuring that your website falls only a maximum of five minutes and 16 seconds over the period of an entire year (99.999 percent uptime). To protect against downtime, you need to take into account every factor that can cause it and protect your system from being brought down through a single point of failure.
One of the simplest ways of doing this is to employ a solution that incorporates load balancing and failovers. Incapsula’s SaaS-based load balancing service distributes processing and network load across the infrastructure, ensuring traffic is serviced from the server most available. A redundancy and failover mechanism will ensure that servers and data can get back online in the fastest time possible should a failure at any point occur.
In a world where DDoS and other traffic-based attacks are growing at a tremendous pace, disasters are bound to happen at one point or another. Deploying a high availability infrastructure ensures that the lights stay on through wind and rain.
Keeping your data secure in the public cloud with Skyfence
There are many reasons why companies won’t get on the cloud. But it usually boils down to this when it comes to strong hesitation:
- They have the impression the cloud isn’t safe, or
- The regulatory environment they’re under leaves them uncertain they should be using a particular service.
Image credit: Cloud app discovery by Skyfence
It is normal for IT departments to have concern over whether the cloud is a safe place to put data. It can be accessed by employees who can login to their accounts from anywhere in the world, on any device they own. Breaches can happen quickly this way, and you usually never know what hit you until it’s too late. It’s a reason why businesses are discouraged from putting extremely sensitive data on popular cloud storage or even email services, even if such services can be an impressive productivity booster.
For the most part, IT departments really can’t know what your employees are doing with your data or what apps they are accessing. Skyfence sheds some light on what actually goes on within your private, public or hybrid cloud. The service enables audits so you can see everything that is being done with your data. You also gain a full risk profile for each application that you deploy across your infrastructure. This way, you can make more informed adoption decisions and manage your business in a transparent manner. You’ll get reports on what application settings could interfere with regulatory compliance, placing you in that safety bubble you had been used to when you were running everything in-house.
Businesses should not fear the risks of deploying cloud services, even with the perceived regulatory, compliance, performance and security risks. Readily-available cloud services can help bulletproof your infrastructure, ensuring reliability and robustness you can expect from any enterprise-grade service.