Instructor Insight – Cloud Q&A

Taylor Karl
Instructor Insight – Cloud Q&A 2166 0

Norm Kennedy is an award-winning Technical Instructor with over 20 years of experience. He specializes in Microsoft and Google Cloud architecture.

Cloud computing has been a standard feature for most IT departments for over a decade. What challenges do you still see customers struggling with?

Norm: For most businesses, the challenge of the cloud comes down to training. Many IT departments are asked to "go to the cloud" from people above that are not sure what that means. For long- entrenched IT staff who have been doing things on-premises, the notion of cloud feels like a loss of control and security. In truth, in some instances, it gives them more control and security. Getting IT staff trained on how to leverage cloud resources will help reduce stress and increase productivity.

Cloud Training Solutions

We know that 72% of enterprises describe their cloud strategy as hybrid-first. What are the advantages that make the hybrid cloud model the clear favorite?

Hybrid approaches to cloud enable companies to maintain complete control over data and services are not ready to turn over to a service provider. At the same time, the cloud offers massive vertical and horizontal scalability. Companies want to take advantage of moving those non-mission-critical services and resources to the cloud while keeping control over data they wish to stay on-prem. A classic example is leveraging the cloud for a fully scalable front-end stateless web app that accesses data housed entirely in an on-premises database service.

2020 fast-tracked the digital transformation plans for many organizations. Now that many have adopted the cloud somehow, how do you recommend they continue to evolve with it?

Often companies approach the cloud with a lift and shift mentality. Simply put, taking virtual machines running on-premises and moving them to the cloud as hosted VMs. While this is a significant first step, the IT staff still has to manage the entire stack from the Operating System up. Once comfortable with this type of Infrastructure as Service (IaaS) migration, companies should then begin to look at ways to offload some administrative overhead by leveraging both Platform and Software as a Service offering (PaaS & SaaS). For example, instead of deploying VMs and installing a hosting platform such as IIS and then deploying the code to the web app in an IaaS model (thus managing the OS/IIS application/Code and all patching.) Instead, they could deploy a PaaS web app allowing the provider to manage the OS and application tier while simply focusing on code.

I know you have primarily been focused on Microsoft technology for most of your career. What are some next steps that you can recommend to our readers who are either new to Cloud or more advanced?

United Training offers cloud solutions from all of the big players in the cloud space. You can find all of Azure solutions on our Azure product page. United Training is also a Select Training Partner with AWS so we have training that spans several certification tracks for every member of your AWS team. We also have an extensive selection of training options for Citrix, as well as Google Cloud.

We thank Norm for his valuable input.