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How to obtain value for money from your cloud deployments across the enterprise

In Software & Cloud Economics, Managed & Subscription Services, Direct Customers

Optimising the ROI of technology deployments is key for a successful digital transformation

Many businesses face a constant battle to drive down costs while trying to provide a service to their customers. This has been driven in part by the move to the cloud, which has given many enterprises the ability to do more for less. But the cloud also has allowed individual lines of business to seek out their own solutions to address their own pressing issues.

All too often this means that pan-enterprise synergies are missed out on as the IT department simply does not know the full extent of the cloud within their infrastructure. Crayon’s Cloud Easy Advisory service aims to assess your organisation’s current position and how to build upon this.

Given the agility that cloud offers, it makes sense for many lines of business within the organisation to deploy infrastructure, but IT needs to keep control of costs. After all, the IT department will get called on should something go wrong or need properly configuring. Gartner studies have found that 30 to 40 percent of IT spending in large enterprises is from “shadow IT,” which is when individual units begin selecting technology for their teams without informing the overall IT department.

In order to get a good idea of what is being used and how much it is costing, IT needs visibility into all parts of the infrastructure; from on-premise, to private and public clouds and Software as a Service (SaaS) applications.

Gaining visibility
Even if your organisation hasn’t deployed into the cloud, there is a very good chance employees have already. Let’s not forget that this still leaves your organisation completely responsible for the security and compliance of any data within that shadow IT.

Another important point to remember is that you can’t block the cloud either, as users will just find other ways. Meanwhile any blocking, or attempts at this, will only serve to stifle your staff’s innovation and productivity. This means it is important to discover just what is being used within the enterprise and start to develop a strategy to control apps and protect data.

Mitigating the risk of shadow IT is just the start of optimising ROI of cloud-based infrastructure and SaaS apps. Then, once they have discovered what is in use, enterprises can assess the risk of these apps – before controlling – as well as developing policies that define what cloud infrastructure is approved and what data can be in the cloud.

Optimisation of ROI
With visibility into what is being used in the enterprise, the IT department can then begin the process of cost optimisation.

In fact, shadow IT can be viewed as a great way for understanding end-user needs and preferences. This, in turn, leads to the development and deployment of approved software and services that can increase employee performance and satisfaction.

It is also an opportunity to ask users about the value of the technology they have deployed and what problems it is solving. Knowing this can help other parts of the organisation that may have similar problems that can be solved through better pan-enterprise deployment of such technologies.

The IT department can then evaluate any new technology for its potential value as an enterprise productivity tool.

Needing a hand in driving value in the enterprise
If and when IT determines there is a very good business reason for converting a shadow IT technology into an approved business tool, the enterprise should engage with expert partners to seek advice and help make sure such technologies meet an organisation’s requirements.

Bringing shadow IT under the auspices of the IT department is best done with help of providers and those who are experts in the field of cloud economics. Talking through an enterprise’s specific needs with partners (such as Crayon) will help in ensuring a provider lives up to its promises via pilot deployments to the rest of the enterprise.

Furthermore, although many modern enterprises may lack the necessary skilled resources to deal with gaining visibility of apps, optimisation of costs and usage across the IT ecosystem, the knowledgebase and experience of such partners can help ensure that value for money is driven across the enterprise as well as making sure that deployed technologies meet enterprise standards.

To find out more about assessing your current infrastructure and elevating your organisation to the cloud, speak to one of our Cloud Easy experts .