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Cloud-based infrastructures are now more popular than ever and have become essential in digital transformation strategies. By the end of the decade, most (if not all) IT solutions will either be totally deployed in a public cloud or have a hybrid environment with on-premises interaction. This shift in IT infrastructure represents a tremendous challenge for engineers because designing and implementing distributed solutions in the cloud requires specialized knowledge and experience.
For this reason, companies need to holistically understand cloud solution architecture to create more secure, resilient, and maintainable solutions that will evolve and adapt themselves to the changes, while maintaining operational excellence.
The Five Must-haves in Cloud Architecture
The five must-have factors successful cloud architecture needs are as follows:
- Distributed design
- Operational excellence
- Security and compliance
1. Distributed Design
A distributed solution design is inherent when architecting a cloud platform. It is a complex challenge that must be addressed from the beginning. You need to take into consideration the following technical, administrative, and strategic aspects:
- Global networking
- User location
- Regulatory requirements
- Resource management
- Identity and access management
- Cloud services
- Vendor lock
- Product best practices
2. Operational Excellence
An ecosystem's ability to maintain optimal operational performance standards, under either normal or extreme circumstances, requires addressing aspects such as the automation of processes, observability, and the inclusion of contingency plans. To keep operational technology levels consistent, companies need to plan and deploy solutions for:
- CI/CD pipelines
- Logging and monitoring
- Disaster recovery planning and execution
3. Security and Compliance
Security planning, especially in the case of mission-critical systems, is mandatory. Both investments in tools and knowledge must be made to ensure potential vulnerabilities are addressed. Compliance (legal, privacy, and information regulations and standards) must be addressed and constantly compiled and evaluated. The critical aspects of security and compliance to consider are:
- Information and infrastructure access security levels
- Authentication and authorization
- API and data security
Solutions reliability has become more relevant as the internet has grown. A company's cloud reliability can contribute significantly to its operational excellence and ability to serve its customers. Working on this non-client facing and non-functional area entails changing processes and technological mentality when analyzing production errors and associated improvements. The critical reliability topics to consider are:
- Site reliability engineering
- Blameless culture
- Service metrics
- High availability
- Deployment strategy
The final must-have aspect is performance. Performance is mainly associated with optimal cloud resources and a solution's elasticity when dealing with network and connectivity changes. Companies must have the following performance aspects on the target:
- Tracing, debugging, and profiling
- Cost optimization
- Forecast calculation
Companies must prioritize these five dimensions early on during the architecture's road mapping and design sessions to have a successful cloud architecture. When accounted for early on, these must-haves factors will give companies a competitive advantage to build more robust distributed solutions that will achieve technical and business returns in both the short and long term.
Let Nisum’s Digital Services Help You Reach Your Cloud Goals
Today, companies have a unique opportunity to transform their businesses to push their IT innovation frontiers using cloud solutions. Cloud computing will only continue to grow in importance. Companies are more likely to adopt cloud computing than ever before with so many cloud options and available hybrid integrations.
If you are in the cloud journey and need a strategic partner, Nisum is ready to help you initiate your digital transformation journey challenge together. Nisum has the world-class knowledge and expertise to provide all your cloud needs, from architecture to development and cloud migration services.
See how Nisum's Digital Services covers all aspects of digital transformation journeys.
Contact us to learn more about how Nisum can develop your cloud competencies and implement best practices across teams, programs, and portfolios for your organization.