As originally written and published on CloudTweaks
Cost. Agility. Innovation. For the modern-day enterprise, the advantages of migrating business applications to the Cloud are many. From substantial cost savings realized through economies of scale and pay-per-use models, to faster innovation and time to market, to the agility and flexibility of auto-scaling systems to accommodate growing application loads, it is no surprise that more than 60 percent of enterprises will forego the traditional client-server architecture found on-premises and migrate at least half of their infrastructure to the Cloud by 2018.
However, the Cloud is only as good as a business employees’ ability to effectively connect to it. Therefore, the performance of business applications and the delivery of the user experience have become very tightly entwined with enterprises’ network connectivity. With the complex Cloud ecosystem of networks, data centers and application and infrastructure providers, traversing a path from the enteprise end-user to the 5,100+ data centers and carrier hotels where the Cloud resides is riddled with challenges. As enterprises strive to meet the demands of the smarter consumer in the future and need to connect a larger and more distributed workforce to the Cloud due to a geographic expansion or acquisitions, their need to connect to and consume the Cloud will only grow more critical, while their road to connectivity grows more complex
The data connectivity market today is highly fragmented, with no one service provider having ubiquitous coverage. Last-mile connections account for 82 percent of all downtime-related activity, 68 percent of overall network cost and 99 percent of complexity found in the network market today. Compounding the connectivity challenges are the differing processes for network configuration, implementation and management, leading to a wide variation of quality in customer experience and predictability in service delivery. Lack of transparency into network assets, service technologies that match application needs, real-time pricing and operational readiness also lead to blind spots in decision-making. In this complex market, how can enterprises ensure they find the best cost and performance?
Having insight, visibility and increased control over connectivity decisions has become one success point of building, launching and maintaining enterprise business applications in the Cloud. Because connectivity as well as applications are growing in complexity and requirements, enterprise end-users require access to tools that leverage data and automation to simplify the experience for the IT professional; tools that enable them to overcome these challenges and simplify their ability to connect to and consume the Cloud. One of the best tools is a marketplace of networks, which can be used not only to simplify connectivity in today’s fractured market, but also for added service data points, performance options, service information and cost effectiveness.
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