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Cloud Computing : Cloud Service – Part 22

Items considered at a minimum to be successful in cloud services during the service strategy phase

The following items are considered at a minimum to be successful in cloud services during the service strategy phase:

1.  Cloud architecture assessment : It analyzes the current architecture and technology choices in order to determine the most suitable cloud strategy, architecture, and operations management.

2.  Operations (people, processes, products, and partners (4Ps)) : The operation such as people, processes, products, and partners are required to build a structure for the domain within the IT organization.

3.  Demand management : It evaluates the demand for service capacity and controls the capacity that is necessary with the expected flexibility.

4.  Financial management or value creation (ROI) :

It includes the following steps:

  • Service valuation

  • Service investment analysis

  • Business impact analysis

Performing service value creation, service investment analysis, and service business impact analysis are considered key steps before embarking on cloud services.

5.  Risk management : It handles the main areas of risk in the cloud, including security threats, failure of equipment, and the inability to deliver services to customers.

Phases of the cloud service lifecycle

Following are the phases of the Cloud Service Lifecycle:

  1.  Service design : It provides assistance in design and development of cloud services.

  2.  Service strategy : It is the phase in which the business strategies, policies, and objectives are defined and an understanding about the constraints, requirements, and business values is developed.

  3.  Service transition : It is used to implement the service design that is made in the design phase into production at the service provider location.

  4.  Service operation : It is the phase in which the service provider obtains possession of the management of the cloud operations from the equipment vendors, system integrators, and partners, and obtains service orders from its end customers.

  5.  Continuous service improvement : It maintains and improves the value of cloud service for meeting the business needs.

Steps included in the financial management and value creation:

The following steps are included in the financial management and value creation:

  1. Service valuation : It finds whether the service differentiation produces higher profits or revenue, lower costs, or better adoption of the services.

  2. Service investment analysis : It provides investment analysis for the stakeholders

  3. Business impact analysis : The cloud model includes some pro and con business impacts, and that should also be considered.

Pro-business impacts include the following:

  •  Capability to move service complexity off-site.

  •  Dynamically source and consume IT services.

  •  Access to subject matter experts that are not present in-house.

  •  Automated upgrades.

Con-business impacts include the following:

  •  The boundary of service has shifted from internal to external, which can produce support issues that are not addressed properly and can affect customer support SLAs.

  •  Cloud services can result in performance issues due to changes in elasticity with demand fluctuations.

Impact to the cloud service provider

Impact to the cloud service provider is defined as below:

  1. Service Asset and Configuration Management : It is used to maintain information about Configuration Items (CI) required for delivering an IT service, including their relationships. The registration of each IT component is required in the CMDB along with a well defined relationship. The failure of a single component has a severe impact on many customers since many customers of the Cloud service provider are supported by these IT components. This will directly impact the business of the service provider.

  2. Demand Management : There can be a sudden rush in demand in a cloud environment. The probability of a rush demand is higher in a public cloud. The provider should always be prepared to provision such demands.

  3. Capacity Management : The service provider should ensure the availability of sufficient capacity to meet the sudden rush in demand. A balance between the utilized and excess capacity is maintained by the service provider.

  4. Request Fulfillment : The request for a cloud service is treated as a service request. How quickly and well the request is responded to is important.

Activities of Capacity Management

Activities of Capacity Management are as follows:

  1. Performance Monitoring : It measures, monitors, analyzes, and implements the performance of IT Infrastructure components.

  2. Demand Management : The purpose of this activity is to influence the demand on capacity.

  3. Application Sizing : It determines the hardware or network capacity in order to support new or modified applications and the predicted workload.

  4. Modeling : It is a proactive activity that is used to forecast the behavior of the infrastructure and recognizes areas that could be better utilized.

  5. Tuning : This activity is defined as the process of making modifications so as to utilize the identified areas of the current infrastructure in a better way.

  6. Storage of Capacity Management Data : It is storing of all business, service, and component capacity data to support in decision making in the Capacity Management and Financial Management processes.

  7. Capacity Planning : This activity forecasts when and where capacity is required to be increased and decreased. A formal Capacity Plan is used to document this recommendation.

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