If the Covid-19 pandemic has taught us anything, it is that even in a disaster there can be winners. The technology sector is one, which has weathered the most disruptive effects of the COVID-19 pandemic relatively well, with some technology trends accelerating, and shifts in usage and IT tactics giving the sector a much-needed boost in uncertain times.
For public cloud provider, Microsoft, its quarter one earning reports reflected the uptake of remote teamwork and learning, sales and customer service, and critical cloud infrastructure and security, resulting from COVID-19.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said, “We’ve seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months….we are working alongside customers every day to help them adapt and stay open for business in a world of remote everything.”
As a Microsoft Gold Partner and managed IT provider, ensuring business continuity during Covid-19 saw ASG’s clients commit to rapid transitions of their entire workforces to work from home. So much so that our managed service work volumes increased by 25 percent almost overnight. In some cases, we fast tracked full organisation rollouts of Microsoft Teams and office applications, so that our client’s environments could be accessed remotely, and their employees able to work undisrupted.
Whilst in some organisations across Australia, transformation projects have been put on hold, projects that support cost efficiency and digital services, such as cloud infrastructure and application services, are full speed ahead.
Marcus D’Castro, ASG’s Executive General Manager of Capability and Consulting, says during the Covid-19 period, “increased demand for online services and remote access to systems and storage files, meant organisations needed additional capacity for cloud-based applications.
Now, as businesses are refocusing their strategies, the emphasis is on cost savings and how to maximise value from existing investments, without losing focus on customer and growth opportunities.”
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Of course, concerns around enterprise adoption of cloud services – such as security, difficulty managing cloud spending and resource consumption, and a lack of cloud expertise – are still an issue. However, they are no longer a barrier for leaders who – through recent lessons – recognise that a migration to public cloud equals flexible computing power, lower costs for backup/recovery, and capital expenses turned into operational costs.
However, as Marcus details, when companies fail to create a cloud migration plan, they rarely make it to the cloud on time, under budget, or with the results they expected. Given the speed and scale of what is involved, migrations can derail in countless ways if they are not carefully organised in advance.
“ASG have a strong managed service background, but we have also facilitated many cloud migrations for large clients. This has made us unique as an MSP because we know the environments well, but we also have the additional capability to do more – for example leveraging our strategy and program management, business analysis, and DevOps capabilities…a great example of this is with our current client Unitywater,” says Marcus.
As reported by ITnews, ASG’s General Manager of Client Solutions, at the time, said “ASG were engaged as a managed service partner in 2018 with a plan to migrate 180 of the utility’s applications into Azure out of Unitywater’s existing private cloud.
“There were some complexities, as is expected when migrating from a private to public cloud. But we put in place a robust transition plan, and we worked closely with Microsoft and Unitywater for the migration,” they said.