5. Organizing for vCloud Operations : 5.2 vCloud Infrastructure Operations : 5.2.2 Role of vCloud Infrastructure Operations COE in Standardization
5.2.2 Role of vCloud Infrastructure Operations COE in Standardization
In a traditional organization, IT is driven by multiple business units. The business unit (BU) controls IT funding, and each BU can enforce separate infrastructure policies and procedures. This approach leads to disjointed architectures and a lack of standardization. IT groups that support such an environment struggle to achieve agreed operating levels, leading to end-user frustration, IT support inefficiencies, and possibly even financial liability.
The implementation of a vCloud changes this scenario. A vCloud is built as a shared resource that requires enforcement of consistent standards across the entire IT organization. To define and enforce these standards, all infrastructure policies and procedures associated with the vCloud should be driven by the vCloud Infrastructure Operations COE team rather than by BUs. This shift poses a significant challenge for organizations who try to move into a vCloud-appropriate infrastructure operating model. The vCloud Infrastructure Operations COE needs to negotiate with different business groups and rely on executive sponsorship and support during the transition to vCloud. More rigorous standards need to apply across the whole organization.
One recommended approach is to align vCloud Tenant Operations with the organizations’ phased development approach, adding a vCloud-first policy during the analysis and design phase for all new projects. Other recommendations include running vCloud Tenant Operations-driven assessments on applications that are being considered for migration to the vCloud. Assessments determine gaps and set expectations with business units on expected changes. The key to success is the ability to balance agility to meet business needs with stringent enforcement of defined standards within the vCloud. Layers of Standardization
The vCloud is a shared resource running on infrastructure supported by the vCloud Infrastructure Operations Center of Excellence and core infrastructure teams. Whereas the vCloud Infrastructure Operations COE sets standards for the vCloud, core infrastructure teams might develop standards for the infrastructure that supports the vCloud. For example, the storage team might create standards for how new logical unit number (LUN) storage is presented for vCloud consumption. This layer of abstraction allows the storage team to have the flexibility to choose the most cost-effective SAN vendor and, if required, support a multi-vendor environment. Measurement with Industry Benchmarks
vCloud technology is evolving at a rapid pace. After a vCloud is established within an organization, a continuous improvement cycle needs to be set up with annual reviews to make sure that the organization’s vCloud is not lacking any current industry standards or benchmarks. The vCloud Infrastructure Operations COE is responsible for running this assessment and presenting the results, including recommendations for remediation, back to the leadership team.