Ptak Associates paints the big picture on Cloud Computing, Mobile, IoT, DevOps, Big Data, Cognitive Computing, and Workload Optimized Systems. Partnering with us, IT organizations understand and prioritize their needs within the context of IT trends, and technology vendors refine their strategies. We provide both with market insight, actionable recommendations, and deliverables that communicate the business values of their products and services
IBM's cloudMatrix Makes Selecting the Right Cloud Service Provider Easier!
By Rich Ptak and Audrey
best among competing options is a daily task. One that can be as easy as deciding
what to have for lunch, or, as complex and stressful as buying a home or choosing
a Cloud service provider. For home or investment purchases, one option is to use
a professional consultant or broker with specialized product knowledge and
process expertise to aid decision-making.
CIOs and IT
staffs face similar challenges when selecting the right hybrid Cloud option
and/or service provider. The pace of technological change, technical and
business requirements, policy variation, changes and options make it
frustratingly difficult. Finding the right combination of services, let alone identifying
all relevant evaluation metrics is neither easy nor obvious. It involves not
only technical requirements, but also business considerations, such as costs,
expected benefits, risks, compliance, etc. With those requirements, using an IT
broker or consultant can be an attractive option.
because of the difficulty in defining and quantifying business metrics, IT traditionally
focused on technical analysis, less on business/financial analysis. Today,
CIO’s cannot afford to ignore business’ aspects. Tight links between IT and the
customer mandate a process that integrates business, technical, implementation
and operations issues. Determining the service that satisfies all requirements
while yielding the best benefits, cost-savings, and payback opportunities is no
easy task. Providing such information in a consumable manner to non-experts at
an affordable price was practically inconceivable.
Today, IBM’s new
cloud service, cloudMatrix solves
many of the CIO’s problems. It provides a comprehensive, affordable way to aid
clients in evaluating hybrid Cloud alternatives. It helps determine: a) how to
provide developers and non-IT buyers multiple cloud service options within the
constraints of enterprise policies, and b) how to manage service implementation
and delivery with visibility into costs, usage and performance.
cloudMatrix services, enterprises can plan, buy, and manage (e.g. broker)
software and cloud services from multiple suppliers across hybrid clouds from a
single screen. In contrast, solutions focused mainly on the technical aspects
of potential cloud workloads tend to be too complex and difficult to understand
for non-technical buyers. Here’s what IBM offers.
differentiation in cloudMatrix is its process-based approach guiding customers
through exploration and adoption of cloud services. Customers proceed systematically
through an IT supply-chain process of Plan, Buy, and Manage. The result is an easier,
more accurate way to choose the right hybrid Cloud. Full brokerage services in
the shared and dedicated models include all three functions, whereas the
Planning offering only provides planning capabilities.
So, IBM Cloud
cloudMatrix Full Broker Shared
cloudMatrix Full Broker Dedicated
IBM cloudMatrix Planning enables enterprise to assess an
existing application’s benefit from and readiness for the Cloud with its analytics-based
workload characterization, automated cloud service brokerage capabilities and
cloud management. Workload characterization with sophisticated analytics
defines the potential workload using an interactive, research-based
questionnaire. The customer chooses what to assess, e.g. application readiness,
comparison of cloud providers or a custom designed solution or blueprint. Using
additional analytics and user priorities, it makes recommendations on where the
workload best fits from among cloud provider and in-house options. Out-of-box
comparisons cover AWS, Azure, SoftLayer, Google Compute, VMware vCloud Director
5.1 and 5.5. It delivers information for essential purchasing decisions, such
as estimated costs and operational requirements.
Both Full Broker packages add the ability to
buy services from the cloudMatrix catalog.
Users purchasing FullBroker Dedicated services can customize
user roles and access levels via integration with existing identity management systems.
The management function allows IT
operators to deliver orders using ITSM workflows and/or automated DevOps and
CloudOps technologies. IT administrators can track, manage, and report
financials – including charge-back to the departments consuming cloud services.
Note that only those with the Dedicated offering have the ability to customize services,
including planning and catalog.
IBM Cloud offers all three offerings as Software as a
Service, plus implementation services to quick start your implementation and
configuration along with three training sessions on how to use the platform.
Global Technology Services (GTS) offers managed services
wrapped around all three of the cloudMatrix SaaS offerings for clients who want
to purchase cloudMatrix as a managed solution.
Global Business Services (GBS) offers include “how
to use” cloudMatrix consulting services for tasks as broad as business
transformation to as small to better assess the cloud-readiness of workloads
cloudMatrix’s process-based approach to evaluating, purchasing and managing
cloud services makes buying cloud services more approachable for both business
and IT. The self-service model allows non-technical and IT buyers to more
easily make well-informed cloud service decisions.
facilitating an easier process to evaluate and buy cloud services for
non-technical staff, IT becomes the enabler in the cloud service purchasing
process, rather than the group from which to hide such purchases. In turn, this
enables IT to manage all cloud services, not just those it knows about.
cloudMatrix is a potential game changer. Just as consumer tax preparation
software changed the market with its user process-oriented approach,
cloudMatrix has the potential to change companies’ cloud service purchasing
processes and thus increases the value that IT delivers to business buyers. Well
IBM’s cloudMatrix service came from its acquisition of Gravitant in late 2015.