Three top tips to future-proof the cloud and the network

Cloud adoption has moved beyond the tipping point, and enterprises are driving the trend. By 2017, enterprises will spend £142billion globally on infrastructure and cloud-related services, predicts market research firm IHS. According to a Frost and Sullivan survey of CIOs, a cloud-ready network is the biggest infrastructure element needed for further deployment of cloud-based services.

A fundamental requirement for realising the benefits of cloud computing is high performance network connectivity.  CIOs should consider three key elements when evaluating potential network-connectivity solutions and partners.

revised cloud network graphic4 CMYK upd


Privacy, security, and reliability equals performance

The default to access cloud applications and services is the public internet. While this may be adequate for consumer applications, enterprises should not rely on a best-effort network to support their mission-critical business operations. The internet has variable performance characteristics, lacks an end-to-end service-level agreement and can be detrimental to the end-user experience of cloud-based services. It is not engineered to meet the imperatives for business applications – guaranteed data delivery, quality of service or service prioritisation.

Enterprises should consider a private-network approach, one specifically designed to deliver cost-effective reliability, security and performance. A private-network solution comprised of ethernet and/or MPLS based IP-VPNs and backed by strong SLAs, delivers carrier-grade performance in support of mission-critical enterprise applications and services.


Global reach and capacity

Just as all enterprises are not alike, neither are all networks the same, meaning a cloud solution is only as good as the network supporting it.

As today’s enterprises do business around the globe, they need a ubiquitous network able to reach any location worldwide, whether offices are around the corner or across the globe. Private, secure access to corporate resources is a must.

CIOs should also consider whether a private network has the flexibility to scale bandwidth whenever necessary. An on-demand, burstable bandwidth model gives enterprises the confidence of having the necessary bandwidth at all times, without the financial burden of paying for idle capacity.


Easy access to cloud IT applications and services 

The advent of cloud services and capabilities means enterprises can get best-of-breed services and applications from anywhere, anytime, from any device.

These cloud services are generally hosted in the major data centres of the world. To maximise their cloud investment, enterprises should seek network partners with global reach and connectivity to these same major data centres.

The combination of high-performance network connectivity and close proximity to cloud-based applications makes an enterprise’s cloud investment even more valuable.  While maintaining control over their network configurations, it will have direct access to the best-of-breed applications, effectively making them part of the corporate network, thus offering a better user experience.

Cloud computing success requires the right network partner. GTT provides enterprises with a complete cloud architecture solution built on its ubiquitous global network infrastructure. GTT operates more than 200 PoPs in 54 of the world’s major metropolitan centres, providing direct connectivity to any location on the planet and any application in the cloud.

Andy Johnson is MD, EMEA/APAC, GTT