Cloud automation refers to the use of software tools (orchestration, automation, and cloud provisioning software) to automatically control the installation, configuration, and management of cloud computing services. It helps enterprises make better decisions for their cloud computing resources.
Cloud automation involves the following IT activities:
- Security and compliance
- Backups and storage
- Code deployment
- Changes to settings and configurations
Ready to dive in and automate your cloud deployments? Just purchasing a cloud automation tool isn’t enough. It’s just one piece of the puzzle. You need personnel who can effectively use those tools to implement automation the right way. These skills will enable you to make the most out of your cloud deployment.
The Benefits of Cloud Automation
The benefits of cloud automation can have a huge impact on security and efficiency. Automation can give IT staff members peace of mind since they can configure servers once without the risk of errors. Making changes to all the clouds also becomes a breeze since it’s done programmatically. Automated patching, checks, and updates can help resolve issues.
Automation also helps with the cross-platform management of your multi-cloud deployment. Completely automated systems can handle all your servers, applications, operating systems, and more. Once you’ve automated provisioning and configuration of these tools, your teams will be able to manage all aspects of your server with ease rather than find themselves caught up in mundane manual tasks.
Businesses need to perform network or application configurations and scale up existing systems as the operating landscape changes. Cloud automation solutions facilitate the growth of IT infrastructure. Infrastructure will scale up dynamically. Effective cloud automation allows you to respond to critical changes promptly.
Systems that can detect and mitigate threats by auto-correcting or self-healing are far more secure. As systems grow in complexity, they usually become harder to manage. Automation can help identify potential threats as they arise.
Finally, automation helps teams to develop repeatable processes that help save time. This is because there’s no need for duplication of efforts.
It’s Not Enough to Have the Right Tools
If you’re exploring the possibility of automation, you’ll be naturally inclined to look at solutions designed to automate your systems. The tools you use are important, but so are the people who operate them.
You can have many variations of cloud provisioning software, cloud orchestration software, and cloud automation software. However, if you don’t have the skills to operate these tools, then they’re of no value to your enterprise. In short, you need the brains to drive the brawn.
Many data centers are moving to DevOps. This makes the need for automation know-how increasingly important. After all, automation is a key part of DevOps since it supports the ability to deploy often, push apps through development, and fix bugs quickly. If enterprises don’t invest in staff members who have skills in automation, then they are likely to fail in their DevOps initiatives.
A Shift in Thinking Toward Cloud Automation Tools
Automation is more about a mind shift than it is a technology shift. For this reason, it can be hard for managers to adopt and implement automation within their organizations. This is especially true when they do not fully understand how to do it successfully.
It’s tempting to just Google “How to automate IT” or check out online forums to figure out how to go about it. This can be a solution for those who are short on time and have budgetary constraints.
Informal learning does have its benefits, but it may not be the right solution for your organization. It’s often not accurate, coherent, or prescriptive. And, sometimes, the source may be unreliable. Informal learning usually lacks reinforcement through actual hands-on practice.
Formal learning is usually the answer to these issues. Self-learning tools can offer on-demand and just-in-time learning for professionals looking for microlearning and performance support on the latest versions of automation software.
Instructor-led training, on the other hand, gives participants the ability to discuss problems, ask questions, and interact with trained professionals and peers. A combination of the two can be powerful. A self-learning tool facilitates continuous learning while they learn key concepts in class. In-class participants learn how to adjust to the right mindset from automation experts who have been through the process.
It’s normal to fear IT modernization. However, understanding the benefits that accrue from such an investment can help settle the fears. Industry experts can help make in-class participants feel more comfortable with the move to automated systems.
The Value of Automation Expertise
There’s value in investing in training that builds the automation skills of your existing staff. The more you invest in your people, the more value you’re bound to add to your organization. Employees with automation knowledge will have more time to focus on more valuable tasks that benefit the enterprise. As a result, your cloud deployments will be in a better position to achieve greater agility, efficiency, and effectiveness.