“Where is the tail and the head of the dog?” as CSC’s Giunta puts it. “You have to virtualize before you cloud enable, that’s true, and virtualization has given us a lot of efficiencies.”
But Giunta says cloud moves the improvement needle even further. Sure, virtualization lets multiple applications run on a single server, but cloud models are designed to deliver abstracted IT resources on-demand, often in a multi-tenant environment.
“With virtualization, you might reduce your server footprint but you haven’t created extra capacity that is on demand whenever you need it,” she says.
Also, cloud computing models are engaging the whole business, not just IT, says Bhargava. That, in turn, can drive greater value. That value is largely realized through increased agility.
I’ve heard that before, like late last year when I spoke with Sharon Pitt, executive director with George Mason University’s Division of Instructional Technology. The university leverages a mix of cloud services in both private and public cloud models. Pitt said essentially the same thing – that many at GMU are asking for and expecting IT to support the cloud services they’ve discovered and now use and that the cloud services GMU now employs is providing greater elasticity (and agility) to IT groups so they can respond appropriately and with yes answers more often than they’ve ever been able to.
Now that’s improvement.