Proactive: IT as a Service Broker

Proactive organizations are able to bring opportunistic cloud investments into a cohesive strategy. Self-service capabilities and automation continue to free IT resources that can be redirected away from system maintenance towards the creation of services that benefit the business. Proactive organizations also have greater understanding of IT cost and financial data giving them a deeper understanding and better control of OPEX.

A key milestone for proactive organizations is the creation of a cloud center of excellence. This function determines directions and decisions around cloud, identifies processes that require updating and plans organizational changes and technology investments that ensure cloud moves forward along a strategic path. The cloud center of excellence helps an organization evolve pragmatically while beginning to shift investment from traditional physical systems to future architectures.

Proactive organizations are also able to support tier one applications in the cloud while ensuring enterprise-class SLAs can be supported. This is a critical step to expanding the pervasiveness of cloud computing beyond test, development and opportunistic applications. Establishing an infrastructure and processes to support cloud-level disaster recovery, as well as security, compliance and risk management capabilities, provides the foundation for applications that are tightly linked to revenue generation, customecapar relations and business operations.

One of the most significant shifts in proactive organizations is the ability to behave as a service broker. This enables IT to strategically manage multiple sources of IT resources, including external providers, as well as match resources to the specific needs of the application or service. More granular visibility of IT costs lets IT balance resources to serve three core values: cost, risk and service level reliability.

Becoming a service broker is a fundamental step in embracing cloud services from third-party providers and leveraging them as an accelerator for innovation. As a service broker, IT can make sure that the needs for immediate gratification do not compromise standards for compliance, security and governance.

Advancing to an Innovative Cloud Organization

In order for IT to further mature and expand its ability to act as a source of innovation for the business, the organization can take specific steps to redefine the way that it operates and the technology it leverages for its foundation:

  • Expand automation of key manual processes to reduce systems maintenance commitments and establish a foundation for proactive incident management.
  • Advance self-service capabilities to further establish an on-demand service model.
  • Expand the role of the cloud center of excellence to have decision making authority across IT.
  • Unify external and internal clouds under common management to support IT’s service broker role and ensure consistency across diverse environments.
  • Leverage granular financial data to counsel the business on tradeoffs between cost, quality of service and risks across service options.

Read more about achieving IT innovation.