4 Self-Deployable Ways to Digitize Your Business
4 Self-Deployable Ways to Digitize Your Business
Given the current situation, where every business activity is forced to slow down, cloud platforms might bring harmony. But how?
Join the DZone community and get the full member experience.Join For Free
Migrating to the cloud has always been an onus for organizations looking to step ahead of competitors. Given the current situation, where every business activity is forced to slow down, cloud platforms might bring harmony. The question that arises here is how?
When the entire workforce is isolated and at distant locations, dealing and tackling a whole new environment, let alone setting it up, seems inappropriate. But do you know you can still move on with cloud transformations with ease?
All you to do is tweak strategies, twist your approach, and look for alternatives, one that will help you deploy cloud solutions even when your workforce is isolated. One way to deal with this is to setup examples for the in-production phase and further implement it in the long run. While brainstorming it all by yourself could sound tough, here we have curated four different DIY methods that you can consider when planning to make your business cloud-friendly.
Deal and Deploy Infrastructure-as-a-Code
In case you have thought of running cloud applications or already have, you might be accustomed to the idea of software-as-a-service, right? Put simply, it is leveraging from standard software and accessing it as *as a service* model. The Microsoft Platforms such as MS Office, Excel or say the Google Docs are all part of the SaaS model. While this isn't something new or very different from what we have been doing to date, infrastructure as code is one form that a majority of organizations aren't yet used to using.
What happens here is that the entire infrastructural definitions or undertakings could be hard-coded and embedded in a machine-readable format. One set of instructions or say a command and the infrastructure starts functioning. Imagine having a power outage or any soft of a business discrepancy, when you have your infrastructure listed out in the form of a code, nothing can disrupt the functioning of the system let alone blend errors.
Earlier things were largely basic and did not include high-end scalability. As more and more organizations move to be cloud-native, the need for robust solutions arise. Instead of having a big chunk of instances, we have smaller units and so the provisions needed are quite large. In lieu of such unprecedented growth, the only thing that helps is automation and hence, infrastructure as code.
Embedding the above solution, you not only tend to simplify IT management but at the same time invest your time and efforts in an optimal way. Besides, the cost associated with IaC is pretty less as compared to the incursion when doing the same job manually.
What you can do know is segment that job between the team and ask them to set up infrastructure codes in a versioned and machine-readable format. It could be anything from the staging or QA by your software development team to automating scripts by your networking team and modulated ticketing by CRM agents. The key lies in identifying the right job and there you are all set to push in IaC.
Unifying Data or Creating a Data Lake
Having centralized data storage is definitely an excellent move given the skyrocketing potential of data. However, the existing data centers have a few limitations. One of the common ones being varying formats. An alternative to this is deploying data lakes.
What a data lake does is, it combines data of all sorts and all formats under singlehood. Irrespective of the department, the customer, the operation, and the size, a data lake can house every kind of data. It is defined as the rich repository that holds data from a series' of systems and services. With a data lake in a place, organizational employees have the ease to access them, query them, process, analyze, and even integrate it with other tools for better processing.
Besides, using a data lake centralizing all information becomes easy. Data scientists and analysts can leverage the platform to generate reports and come up with insightful information. In case your organization needs to extract data from multiple systems, a data lake would save you the time and effort, otherwise spent on switching between applications and systems to export data.
There are a plethora of tools that help organizations create data lakes for their enterprise data. Start with one system's data and then move on to expand and export all others progressively.
Redefine Your ETLs
Not sure what ETL is? Splitting it in terms of the acronym, E stands for extracting, T says transform, and L is for loading. So, ETL is about extracting, transforming, and loading. When planning to migrate your data from existing systems to the data lakes, organizations tend to face multiple issues. The transfer could be between two databases or one database and a lake or vice-versa. Either be the case, the overall process is quite daunting and might scare you off.
But wait, hold on. We are not here to haunt you but to provide solutions. If you set out to seek help from your cloud service providers, they will definitely have a solution for you. Nearly every other cloud-based organization offers you dedicated tools and technologies to migrate your business data from existing systems to the data lake. On the contrary, when you are looking for a DIY method, you can consider Stitch or Fivertan to transform the way you move data to the centralized lakes.
What's best about such platforms is the ease and flexibility provided by them to determine schemas and then make the move. Other activities such as task operationalization, change management, and tool configuration are managed and mapped by the platforms. Deploying the right strategy, you can definitely optimize the ETL operations within your enterprise.
Function as a Service
Another fascinating concept is FaaS. Imagine performing the same task time and again. Not only is this time-consuming but it also tends to leave the professional frustrated. It could be anything between running a script or testing a series of software products.
This is where we introduce the idea of FaaS or function as a service. It is designated as a serverless backend service and can be used by the development team to create pieces of code to run a script or in the simplest form, automate their cron jobs. When you have a single function or one that is part of the application, its best to write pieces of code that can be triggered on the occurrence of a specific event. It is, in fact, an excellent initiative when you are scouring for DIY cloud projects.
Consider a situation when you want to create a backup or send e-mails. Traditionally you would spare some time from your everyday activities and then sit down to run the operation. It might take only a few minutes to backup your database or analyze log files, yet it consumes a great deal of time. What you can do here is create a dedicated piece of code, one that the cloud provider would automatically run at the specified time. Say, run a backup every time a new file is uploaded and once in three days.
This way you not only reduce the time and efforts needed to perform a significant operation but also increase the pace at which a task is done. For instance, automating the back-up operation, you can simultaneously work without having the need to look after the process or keep an eye on it. It works best for the cron jobs as the infrastructure is now running multiple applications in a parallel environment, instead of queueing them. In case you have an architecture that is backed by microservices, FaaS would help scale your code besides embedding automation.
Cloud expansion might not be an obligation for now but it is always suggested as it helps your enhance and optimize the overall workforce. You need not pick every other project and integrate it into your workforce. Instead, have a conversation with your team and decide which of these would be the best to implement. Once you have made the choice, you can then move ahead with plans and strategies to manifest automation and expand your organization's cloud initiatives.
It is best to start slow and then scale every other application within the organization. You can also consider connecting with your cloud service provider for help. Even though it is a DIY method, seeking expert advice is always a plus.
Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.