Welcome!

Recurring Revenue Authors: Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Xenia von Wedel

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Java IoT, @DXWorldExpo, @ThingsExpo

@CloudExpo: Article

The Cloud in 2017 and #IoT | @CloudExpo @Cisco #SaaS #PaaS #AI #SDN

Which of the possible cloud offerings – public, private and hybrid – is the best choice?

Cloud usage continues to gain momentum across all industries. In a recent FutureScape: Worldwide Cloud 2017 Predictions report, IDC predicted that between 60 percent and 70 percent of all software, services and technology spending will be on the cloud by 2020.

With this increase in cloud usage comes a corresponding need for employees with cloud skills. Supply has not kept pace with demand, however. The State of Cloud Readiness Study 2016 found that 53 percent of IT leaders are struggling to acquire the necessary skills to support cloud initiatives within their organizations, while almost half indicate staff training is not a priority.

This is a serious problem, but one that hold tremendous upside potential for career advancement and success for network and data center professionals with the right training and certifications. For those weighing a career in IT, cloud skills are in high demand and worth pursuing.

Pick your cloud
Which of the possible cloud offerings - public, private and hybrid - is the best choice? That depends entirely on each organization along with the type of data it generates and uses. Organizations using the public cloud rely on the resources of third-party service providers for cloud storage or online accounting software. The biggest argument in its favor is cost. Organizations can rent public cloud services for monthly or annual fees and it's up to the provider to keep them running, accessible and updated.

Public cloud is a type of Software as a Service (SaaS), and some providers are going further to offer Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). PaaS enables an application to run on different infrastructures. IaaS makes an entire infrastructure available as a rentable service.

However, the public cloud suffers from security and accessibility issues. Data on the public cloud may not be as secure as it should be, especially if it is sensitive financial or health information that is regulated. Also, if the internet is down, then the data and the application may not be available when the organization needs them.

This group of factors has led many organizations to set up their own, private clouds. Organizations use private clouds to make their data more secure and to arrange them the way they prefer. They are not interested in selling SaaS but want the benefits of the cloud. The downside is the expense, which can be significant, and the need to hire scarce IT professionals with cloud expertise.

Still other organizations find their version of the best of both worlds in the hybrid cloud. Organizations keep sensitive data more secure on an internally managed private cloud. They then use the public cloud when needed, as in peak demand periods, when individual applications can be sent to the public cloud. Hybrids are also helpful during rough weather, scheduled maintenance or rolling brownouts or blackouts. IDC predicts that 80 percent of enterprise IT organizations will commit to the hybrid cloud by 2017.

Security, database and other in-demand cloud skills
Once the choice of cloud has been made, the fact still remains that the organization will need IT professionals with certain cloud skills. Some of the fundamental skills are cloud migration and cloud security.

Learning and development can help fill the gap. Cloud skills training and certification courses should combine learning conceptual knowledge with developing hands-on skills. Topics covered should include:

  • Cloud infrastructure launch.
  • Private and hybrid cloud design.
  • Cloud security design.
  • ACI and APIC automation.
  • Application provisioning and lifecycle management.
  • Cloud systems management.
  • Private and hybrid IaaS provisioning.

Cloud migration has been a staggered process; some organizations are already there, and some have not yet made the move. All of them need IT professionals who have a solid grounding in the varying models for clouds. They also need to know how to map the organization's current IT infrastructure, including its applications and workloads on existing servers, and how to send all of what they have mapped to a cloud equivalent. The larger the organization, the more complicated this becomes.

Security is also critical in the cloud; almost every day brings news of yet another data breach. How to keep data secure, how to build and maintain secure platforms, and securing cloud infrastructure are all high-demand skills.

Organizations need IT professionals with know-how to develop and work with cloud applications, so additional top cloud skills cover SaaS, PaaS and IaaS. The same applies to cloud platforms and infrastructures. This means they should be fluent cloud programming languages like Python, Perl and Ruby along with traditional languages like .NET, Java and PHP. Linux skills are also in high demand.

As the Internet of Things generates quintillions of bytes of data daily, another high-demand skill is cloud database expertise. Organizations want most to uncover insights and new markets from this tsunami of data, and they need IT professionals with cloud database querying skills. SQL, along with open source languages like MySQL, Hadoop or Mongo DB are worth learning.

What the cloud requires
The cloud continues to advance, transforming business with new possibilities. But it requires specialized skills and knowledge in order for organizations to reap the benefits of a consistent, secure cloud deployment. IT professionals who are willing to obtain the needed cloud training and certifications will prove their mettle to current and prospective employers.

More Stories By Antonella Corno

Antonella Corno has 20+ years of experience in the IT industry as part of a career spanning two continents (Europe and North America), in several leading IT companies, most recently at Cisco. While she has been in technology R&D for most of her career, her interest has recently shifted to the training and certifications that are supporting and enabling the workforce of the future, and is she now responsible for the Application, Software and Cloud Team within the Product Strategy group in [email protected]

Antonella is a CCIE Emeritus, has been a speaker at several international conferences, and holds a number of international patents.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


IoT & Smart Cities Stories
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place November 12-13 in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd international CloudEXPO | first international DXWorldEXPO and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time t...
Contextual Analytics of various threat data provides a deeper understanding of a given threat and enables identification of unknown threat vectors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, David Dufour, Head of Security Architecture, IoT, Webroot, Inc., discussed how through the use of Big Data analytics and deep data correlation across different threat types, it is possible to gain a better understanding of where, how and to what level of danger a malicious actor poses to an organization, and to determin...
The hierarchical architecture that distributes "compute" within the network specially at the edge can enable new services by harnessing emerging technologies. But Edge-Compute comes at increased cost that needs to be managed and potentially augmented by creative architecture solutions as there will always a catching-up with the capacity demands. Processing power in smartphones has enhanced YoY and there is increasingly spare compute capacity that can be potentially pooled. Uber has successfully ...
The deluge of IoT sensor data collected from connected devices and the powerful AI required to make that data actionable are giving rise to a hybrid ecosystem in which cloud, on-prem and edge processes become interweaved. Attendees will learn how emerging composable infrastructure solutions deliver the adaptive architecture needed to manage this new data reality. Machine learning algorithms can better anticipate data storms and automate resources to support surges, including fully scalable GPU-c...
We are seeing a major migration of enterprises applications to the cloud. As cloud and business use of real time applications accelerate, legacy networks are no longer able to architecturally support cloud adoption and deliver the performance and security required by highly distributed enterprises. These outdated solutions have become more costly and complicated to implement, install, manage, and maintain.SD-WAN offers unlimited capabilities for accessing the benefits of the cloud and Internet. ...
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
As IoT continues to increase momentum, so does the associated risk. Secure Device Lifecycle Management (DLM) is ranked as one of the most important technology areas of IoT. Driving this trend is the realization that secure support for IoT devices provides companies the ability to deliver high-quality, reliable, secure offerings faster, create new revenue streams, and reduce support costs, all while building a competitive advantage in their markets. In this session, we will use customer use cases...
Machine learning has taken residence at our cities' cores and now we can finally have "smart cities." Cities are a collection of buildings made to provide the structure and safety necessary for people to function, create and survive. Buildings are a pool of ever-changing performance data from large automated systems such as heating and cooling to the people that live and work within them. Through machine learning, buildings can optimize performance, reduce costs, and improve occupant comfort by ...
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...