Prepare for the Cloud

26/09/2019

Some tips and tricks to consider if you’re using Cloud services or are in the market for a Cloud migration. 

Introduction

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is launching a new region in South Africa soon. Microsoft Azure is already there. Noise levels regarding migrations to the Cloud will ramp up in that region over the coming months. And businesses will be inundated with terms like IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), PaaS (Platform as a Service), SaaS (Software as a Service). ETZ Global’s team of experts are well positioned to help businesses understand the benefits of each service.

A lot of enterprises’ first introduction to Cloud services are SaaS services such as Office 365 and Google Suite. This is only the tip of the iceberg and companies wonder how they can leverage the shiny new tools provided by Cloud providers such as AWS and Azure.

Preparing for your Cloud migration

You firstly need to identify services that are suited for the Cloud and will benefit from the flexibility and scalability offered by Cloud services. Proof of concept is a great way to dip your toes into Cloud computing for a first-hand experience of the benefits that a Cloud solution offers.

SAP HANA is the primary database for SAP and the Cloud is an ideal place to play with it before embarking on a long and expensive process of upgrades and migrations. Utilizing HANA in the Cloud holds many advantages for day-to-day business operations. Consider how your business could benefit from the following improvements:

  • Immediate provision of new servers or termination of redundant servers
  • Improved scalability, up or down
  • Flexibility as you never experience before
  • Quick failback to previous configuration levels or server state(s)
  • Multiple copies of a system at the same time with different configuration levels under evaluation
  • Transparent cost management

Plan of action for your Cloud migration

Once you’ve identified services that you want to migrate to the Cloud, you need to have a concrete plan for introducing Cloud computing. Make sure you plan how to integrate Cloud applications with in-house software and also be aware of how you might need to decouple dependencies on SaaS services to ensure that you don’t become dependent on a service that might not be available in the future or where an upgrade means your other systems suddenly can’t communicate with a key service.

Preparing for your migration to Cloud

Once you’ve made the leap to the Cloud, think about how you might be able to do it with a SaaS or Cloud solution. ETZ Global specializes in designing enterprise-level solutions to suit a variety of needs. Our team can assist with the following:

  • Complete SAP Technical Solutions for your enterprise. On-premise, in your data centre, or on Public Cloud.
  • Architect and deployment of SAP Greenfields solution – use established partnerships to offer a complete SAP solution.
  • Planning and executing any SAP upgrade, migration, conversion or migrations to SAP HANA.
  • Deploying and supporting SAP Cloud for Customer C4C solutions.
  • Support any existing solution regardless of size or software versions.
  • Support you with your non-SAP workloads or services leveraging the amazing flexibility and speed of the Cloud.

It is essential to consider that a Cloud solution makes it simpler to scale horizontally (adding more servers) than vertically (increasing the size of your servers). Even though it is easy and quick to resize your system, it does require downtime to scale your system vertically, whereas scaling horizontally, your services can be done on the fly and be set up to happen automatically, e.g. scaling up your system for a once-a-month billing run or Black Friday, or by shutting down service during quiet periods. This helps to manage your cost since you only pay for the services that you use.

The cost factor of migrating to Cloud servers

As a business owner, you probably only have one question in mind at this stage. What is the cost implication of running your business systems on Cloud infrastructure? It is important to note that you are swapping a capital expenditure (buying equipment upfront) for operational expenditure (paying for a service monthly). In this light, it is worth analyzing where the financial advantages lie for your business.

  • Speed and agility
    • Provision compute, storage and network infrastructure for SAP S/4HANA in hours vs. weeks or months with traditional infrastructure.
    • Provision temporary infrastructure for SAP S/4HANA POCs, migration tests, training, etc.
  • On-demand, Pay per use
    • Trade capital expense for variable expenses. Only pay for infrastructure when you consume it.
  • Cost-effective
    • Economies of scale and operational efficiencies translate into to lower cost than you could achieve on your own.
  • Scalability
    • Estimating SAP S/4HANA initial and future memory requirements accurately can be challenging.
    • Traditional infrastructure is oversized sized leading to higher cost for underutilized infrastructure.
    • Infrastructure can be sized based on actual requirements and then increased as the need
  • Flexibility
    • Multiple purchasing options allow you to optimize your cost.
  • Lowest TCO

The benefits of using Cloud servers 

The significant advantage of Cloud services doesn’t lie solely with the cost. It’s in the flexibility and freedom that they offer. Several baked in services already form part of the Cloud expenditure. Usually, your Cloud provider already has their data centres set up with high availability. AWS and Azure’s regions are set up with multiple data centres and hundreds of thousands of servers. Consider some of these benefits:

  • Eliminate the threat of redundancy
  • Hassle-free running of your own servers
  • Resiliency and security
  • Security and compliance
  • Cost-optimized HA and DR
  • Global infrastructure
  • Agility and flexibility: sizing made easy
  • Cutting edge technology

Working with a partner that has the knowledge and experience in setting up and moving your services to the Cloud is key to the success of any project and will be valuable in managing your costs and timelines.

Conclusion options

ETZ Global has an experienced team of Solutions Architect professionals offering quality Cloud server solutions. Our consultants will assist your business to move to the Cloud and equipped to handle any implementation, migration, upgrade or support on any of the popular hardware, software and database platforms. Contact us on solutions@etzglobal.com for us to arrange a session to discuss your Cloud requirements.