How to Provision a Virtual Private Cloud in 45 Seconds

By Andrew Kramer and Matt Howe

There’s increasing interest among enterprises in IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service). Many organizations are moving their servers to cloud-based providers like Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure, among others. The promise of the cloud is fast and cheap infrastructure, but that needs also be balanced with security and control.

Top cloud services providersAll cloud providers offer API integration to their services; Amazon has a vast array of services and completely documented APIs (and even a Ruby SDK), making the work of creating integration with these services fairly easy—if you have the right tools.

One of our customers, a global technology company, recently asked us to create a way to provision a Virtual Private Cloud that included their business rules—something they’ve struggled with using other tooling. Continue reading “How to Provision a Virtual Private Cloud in 45 Seconds”

How to Calculate the Cost Savings from Automated Self-Service

It’s not unusual to find large organizations still using manual processes for service delivery. Users fill out a paper form, fax it to a service desk number, then follow up by phone or email to check on the status of their service requests. This approach requires many inefficient, manual tasks in the service fulfillment process.

What many organizations want—and are trying to move to—is automated self-service for requests, with a single intuitive interface through which users can find any type of service, make a request, and get the service delivered with no manual interaction.

In this model, key tasks such as scheduling, approvals, costing and reporting are automated–accelerating the delivery process, improving accuracy, and reducing costs.

Requests are made through a web-based, mobile-friendly portal that requires no training to use. The portal also provides visibility into the delivery process, eliminating phone calls and email messages to check on the status of the request.

Benefits of this approach include:

  • faster service delivery;
  • a better user experience; and
  • a more effective, lower-cost process for delivering services.

Calculating the return on investment (ROI) start with an evaluation of the time spent requesting and delivering services under an organization’s current approach. This is then compared, on a per-request basis, to the time requirements under an automated enterprise request management (ERM) approach, including total cost of ownership for the new system over three to five years.

ROI is the cumulative cost savings across all services that can be automated divided by the total costs (software, hardware, services, implementation, training) of moving to an ERM approach. The total business impact varies with the volume of service requests which are candidates for automation.

To learn more about the ERM approach to automated self-service, download the whitepaper Enterprise Request Management: An Overview.