Businesses of all sizes are keen to optimize their data storage, access and dissemination to increase enterprise collaboration and timely delivery of services. This means higher productivity and elevated level of service delivery and quality enabled by easier deployment and management of applications and data. While data is one of the most valuable asset of any organization, in many cases this valuable data can be locally stored and stranded making it difficult to access and utilize for business and decision making purposes. The mechanism by which data is served, accessed, and managed is as critical as the availability of the data itself. The cloud helps liberate and operationalize your data wherever it is by providing a flexible platform to service and access your data and business applications anytime, anywhere.
Is it secure, available and flexible?
Whether it is public or private cloud, concerns related to system security, availability and flexibility are all important aspects when considering the different options for cloud deployment. These aspects relate to cost, usage, and back-end system integration and are key drivers for many business decisions. Cutting cost means that organizations should only pay for the service they actually intend to use. Providing a flexible operational platform that integrates with locally managed systems while allowing users to manage their accounts to ensure security, reliability and cost effectiveness is key to successful deployment.
On demand systems should not be viewed as antithetical to on-premises systems, but rather complementary to one another in an integrated fashion reflecting organizational business needs and operational requirements. Some data and applications can be shared with the public while others need to be restricted to certain users. For those reasons a successful enterprise-level cloud deployment, should not be reliant on only a singular approach of either a private or public cloud. Instead, for many enterprises, a hybrid cloud offers the flexibility to allow higher security and level of control for some privately run cloud applications, while allowing other applications to be publicly available. Combining the advantages of both the public and private cloud deployment, hybrid clouds are capable of providing on-demand, highly scalable and flexible systems. This hybrid approach allows data and applications to seemingly flow from one system to another augmenting a private cloud with the capability and resources of a public cloud with enterprise-level deployment and support.
Bringing the cloud to your business:
With the cloud capabilities becoming more secure, reliable, flexible and pervasive today, liberating your data is within your reach. Examples of businesses utilizing the power of integrated cloud to liberate their data abound. To provide superior customer experience without adding staff or IT infrastructure to its existing on-premises solution, easyJet needed a delivery platform that would be affordable, easy to manage, and highly scalable to allow customers to choose their own seats when booking their flights. Microsoft Azure provided the answer. By providing a hybrid cloud booking solution, including finding flights, choosing seats, and purchasing tickets, easyJet was able to make its business applications accessible to mobile customer service agents securely and effectively. This flexible hybrid cloud solution helped in increasing system scalability, accelerating time-to-market, and cutting costs, while improving customer satisfaction with new services.
Another example is Dillen Bouwteam, a construction firm based in Belgium that provides construction services to businesses and homeowners and collaborates with a large number of external stakeholders, such as architects and contractors. It was critical for them to be able to liberate designs and construction plans by giving all team members an easy way to communicate and share them among those different stakeholders. Azure was the solution of choice that provided the needed capabilities to get the job done, allowing them to create a more secure foundation for cloud access and sharing of data so it remains secure, and employees have a simple, centralized way to get to all of their applications. This created a centralized, easily accessible and available platform for exchanging operational data to achieve greater efficiencies and optimization of project planning and delivery.
It is no surprise that more than half of fortune 500 companies are utilizing Azure for their business operation. With the flexibility, security and scalability of the cloud, organizations are now able to liberate their data and enhance their productivity.
For more information, please visit: http://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/overview/what-is-azure/