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Understanding Cloud Automation and Orchestration
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Rafi Adinandra
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The modern enterprise cannot innovate without the use of cloud automation and orchestration for software development and application modernization. Applications form the foundation of both internal operations and customer facing services that define the business’ core mission.

This mix of event-driven business models, cloud infrastructure, and big data workloads requires I&O leaders to use platforms for service orchestration and automation to drive digital innovation. Organizations that increased funding of digital innovation are nearly three times more likely to be a top performer than one trailing the pack, according to the Gartner 2021 CIO Agenda survey.

This is essential to digital transformation in a cloud world where enterprises must connect disparate on-premises and cloud systems, SaaS solutions and data sources to clear the path for innovation. It’s imperative for enterprises to understand the differences and similarities of automation and orchestration as two sides of the same coin. When strategically implemented together, they can deliver specific business outcomes for time savings, scalability, efficiency, and digital innovation.

What is Cloud Automation?

Application migration, modernization and development are primary catalysts for enterprise innovation. The set of tools that enable cloud automation are integral to making the manual processes of each of these tracks more time and cost efficient while bringing greater accuracy. Whether it’s provisioning or managing tasks, cloud automation is the means to specific business outcomes.

What is Cloud Orchestration?

Orchestration is a method for automating many tasks together as part of an IT or cloud process of arrangement, coordination and management of computer systems, middleware, or services. Although the focus can be much broader, enterprises predominantly use them for application migration, modernization, and development, which allows them to:

  • Build and manage workloads across hybrid and multicloud environment
  • Coordinate teams, functions, cloud services, security, and compliance activities
  • Eliminate costly process errors
  • Increase cloud infrastructure productivity
  • Manage overall cloud automation
  • Speed software development
  • Batch process of daily transactions
  • Manage countless servers, applications, and containers
  • Drive data analytics
  • Standardize workflows and products
  • Improving employee experience through internal operations
  • Improve end-user experience through services and products

As two sides of the same coin, automation and orchestration work together to deliver the benefits that make business innovations possible.

Benefits of Automation and Orchestration

Cloud automation and orchestration can deliver many benefits to an enterprise. What we can often overlook is the reality that these benefits should focus on driving innovation for the enterprise in the marketplace. The goal is to see these benefits as the foundation for innovation by delivering:

  • Lower IT costs, and resource/time savings
  • Automation and orchestration strategies focused on clearly defined and regulated processes to bring greater workflow transparency and clarity
  • Higher productivity that delivers consistent and reliable results with fewer resources and supervision

Automation and orchestration in DevOps enable teams to streamline and accurately execute processes that lead to better and faster app migrations, deployments, workflows, and updates. A major example is continuous integration (CI) and continuous delivery (CD).

While enterprise innovation can take many forms, its direction and discoverability are often driven by automation and orchestration. That requires the business to focus on the following elements to achieve defined and discoverable innovation goals:

  • Business outcome needs that support the core mission and create significant and measurable business value
  • Increasing process speed and accuracy should have quantifiable operations, IT, and customer services benefits
  • Have a plan for how the IT personnel and employee will use the time gained through automation and orchestration

Using any cloud automation or orchestration strategy should always start with a desired end state and business outcome result. This ensures that the specifics of tools, processes, and methodologies for automation and orchestration are part of a reverse engineering mindset process that ensures those outcomes. This is particularly true of application migration, modernization, and development in the cloud.

Planning for Application Migration, Modernization and Development using Automation and Orchestration

Since automation and orchestration are the best means for saving time and money while increasing scalability, they are all a means to innovation. I can say the same of the primary use of automation and orchestration for application migration, modernization, and development.

The biggest roadblock to creating an innovative enterprise is often the need for containerization. This is the building block for decomposing monolithic applications into microservices for greater scalability, availability, and flexibility. Over 75 percent of global organizations will run containerized applications in production this year (2022), predicts Gartner. That’s a far cry from the 30 percent of just two years ago, which shows that enterprises realize that application modernization and development are the road to innovation.

Tools like Google Anthos, Migrate for Anthos and Docker are essentially automation tools for migrating and decomposing monolithic or new applications into containers and then microservices. This only increases the need for orchestration tools like Kubernetes across growing numbers of containers and workloads operating across cloud environments. This has led to the adoption of Service Orchestration & Automation Platforms (SOAPs) that provide a single orchestration point for managing and executing automation tasks across the enterprise. 

How Techolution Supports Enterprise Innovation through Application modernization and Development

While cloud automation and orchestration work together, their interdependent processes form the foundation of successful application migration, modernization and development that supports enterprise innovation. Enterprises certainly know the specifics of their core mission, but extrapolating that out to innovative business outcomes through application modernization and development is much more of a grey area.

IT and stakeholders find that the density of infrastructure and operations (I&O) obscures a clear path to innovation by applying targeted automation and orchestration. That’s where innovation and digital transformation partner like Techolution can be a vital collaborator. Such a partnership can bring an understanding of the countless options of automation and orchestration. A growing list of specific outcome achievements from enterprise collaboration partners bolsters each new enterprise partnership and its specific needs.

The goal is to help enterprise IT and stakeholders define the specific possibilities of innovation in business outcome terms. That can start with highly defined business outcomes that embody innovation today while also providing the foundation for future-focused innovations. To learn how Techolution can support your enterprise innovation through automation and orchestration, visit our cloud modernization page.

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