In order for enterprises to remain productive and competitive in today’s fast-paced business environment, many have developed complex IT systems and infrastructure that simplify a variety of tasks. However, managing those various systems remains a challenge for organizations around the world.
Traditionally, deploying and operating enterprise workloads was a manual and time-consuming process involving repetitive tasks. These often mind-numbing duties include establishing VM clusters and load balancing, creating storage logical unit numbers (LUNs), sizing, provisioning and configuring resources like virtual machines (VMs), invoking virtual networks, completing the actual deployment and the monitoring and managing of performance and availability.
While these manual, repetitive processes are generally effective overall, they are actually quite inefficient and often filled with errors. These errors can delay the workload’s availability and lead to costly troubleshooting, and they may ultimately put the enterprise at risk by exposing it to security vulnerabilities.
Thankfully, cloud automation tools are now helping companies optimize and manage their IT infrastructure. Within the concept of cloud, automation is several significant layers that are all working together to make the entire process much more efficient and stronger.
What is Cloud Automation?
Cloud automation is a broad term that refers to the tools and processes that an organization uses in order to reduce or eliminate repetitive manual processes for workload deployment, monitoring, and management.
The cloud automation process combines tools and technologies that can help create very powerful cloud infrastructures. These tools have scalability, update control functionality, provisioning speed, and resources to support modern business initiatives.
To take advantage of cloud automation, an organization needs to utilize tools that run on top of its virtualized environment. Where orchestration enables administrators to codify the steps and processes involved with workload deployment and management, automation implements those codified steps without the need for any human interaction.
Cloud automation is generally made of three central components:
- Infrastructure — structured and built into templates which can be versioned and replicated easily for the continued use in future environments.
- Deployment — integrated with cloud-native tools and improves deployment velocity, reducing the required manual effort as well as errors.
- Self-healing/auto-correcting/self-monitoring — monitoring tools and configuration management scripts detect anomalies and proactively correct failed or misconfigured resources.
When properly implemented, cloud automation saves the enterprise time and money. Additionally, since organizations can construct more predictable and reliable workflows, automation inherently leads to fewer errors, leading to more efficient IT and corporate governance.
Automation can provide multiple benefits for enterprises, especially for those organizations willing to proactively work toward creating a system that benefits their users and the business as a whole. To begin with, there are several immediate advantages that businesses can look forward to.
Automation adds intelligence, stability, and repeatability to processes, allowing organizations to streamline administrative functions, simplify their business and IT processes, and create a self-healing environment. This alone can free up IT personnel, enabling them to focus their skills and man-hours to activities that have a more positive impact on the bottom line.
Businesses that move to cloud automation are also going to have the advantage of being able to quickly and effectively respond to business change by baking policies into their IT ecosystem from the word “go.” These policies can include defining when to optimally deploy applications as well as allocating resources as needed and responding to fluctuating user support needs.
One of the most promising initial benefits of cloud automation is that thanks to the scalability of cloud environments and the movement of complex applications being handled via software as opposed to staff interaction, the organization’s innovation can increase dramatically. In other words, companies that opt for automation are able to move at the speed of software rather than at the speed of their developers or staff.
More Bottom Line Benefits
Automating much of the cloud infrastructure management reduces the amount of human interaction meaning fewer errors. IT staff can focus on strategic business initiatives as opposed to putting out daily “fires.” In addition to freeing up IT and other personnel from those drudging repetitive tasks, cloud automation means even more positive impact on the organization’s bottom line.
Industry giants like Netflix utilize cloud automation in order to automatically push hundreds of daily changes to their platform. Automating daily duties that would generally take expensive web teams countless hours is simply smart management. Additionally, their cloud monitoring tools automatically detect issues and if the site’s performance begins to suffer, the tooling will instinctively revert any changes.
In situations like these, cloud automation is akin to having a reliable and 24x7 team member keeping an eye on edge-cases, anomalies, or incidents. Through this type of automation and monitoring, your team can move forward with new ideas and initiatives knowing that there is a proverbial security blanket to fall back on in the event of a mishap or an undesired result.
A Better Path to Managing Your Cloud Database Systems
Now, enterprise organizations are discovering that in addition to the benefits readily inherent with cloud migration and automation, they can attain fast and effective resolutions to cloud database issues with industry-leading tools. Whereas not long ago these tools threatened IT professionals, the most forward-thinking CIOs and CTOs are recognizing that real power and growth comes from integrating new technologies, not fighting against them. By using cloud automation and orchestration tools, organizations of most any size can realize outsized benefits. From OpEx reduction to increased productivity, from amplifying your team’s abilities to providing new stability and scalability, cloud management tools are the wave of the future.
RDX provides mid-market and enterprise organizations with both tools and hands-on expertise when it comes to database administration, management, and monitoring. Adapt to ever-changing business demands and easily scale scope of services through a “single pane of glass” database management tool and access to our expert team of cloud professionals.
Contact us today to learn more about cloud automation and how the right tools can propel your infrastructure into the future.