Cloud Computing, ConstantContact

Putting Our Heads in the Cloud

By: A self-professed Cloud Geek, Joe Kinsella, Founder and
CTO, CloudHealth Technologies

Last Wednesday night, MassTLC brought together 80+
professionals from the Boston Area to talk about the cloud at ConstantContact’s
InnoLoft in Waltham. The event, When, Where and How to Go to the Cloud: Sharing Best
Practices amongst Peers
, was attended by professionals from a
diverse set of companies, such as EMC, Raytheon, MathWorks, ConstantContact,
Veracode, Akamai, Care.com, IBM, and Microsoft.
We started the night with my presentation on the state of
the cloud. In my role as CTO of the Boston-based cloud service management
company, CloudHealth
, I’ve had a unique opportunity to talk to numerous
enterprises and fast-growing technology companies at different stages of cloud
adoption. I’m also a self-professed cloud geek who tries to never miss a local
cloud gathering. I focused my presentation on some of the trends I’ve been
tracking across our industry, including:
Enterprise adoption accelerating – The enterprise has
left development and test in the rear view mirror, and now is focused on heavy
production use of SaaS, IaaS and PaaS.
Complexity – While the cloud provides us great benefits
for agility, innovation, cost, and operational efficiency, it does so at a
cost: complexity.
Governance – The rapid pace of change in the cloud
makes governing cost, availability, performance, security and usage
challenging. Failure to govern is one of the greatest impediments to cloud
Cost – Many companies move to the cloud to achieve
better Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) – but fail to maintain continuous
vigilance required successfully manage costs.
Vendor lock-in – As the offerings from SaaS, IaaS and
PaaS vendors begin to diverge, we are increasingly finding ourselves struggling
with vendor lock-in.
If you missed the event, the
MassTLC has my presentation published online.
Following the presentation, I moderated a great panel
discussion that included Dave Krupinski, CTO of Care.com, Stefan Piesche, CTO
of Constant Contact, Cathy Bilotta, Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives of
Raytheon, and Jeff Lamoreaux, CIO of Global Partners. Here is a sampling of
some of the discussions:
Developing a Cloud Strategy – Jeff Lamoreaux talked
about his “checklist” for cloud adoption that allowed his internal business
partners to adopt new services while still managing risks.
Public & Private Cloud – Stefan Piesche reviewed
his company’s recent experiences in adopting AWS after deciding to move beyond
their OpenStack private cloud.
Shadow IT – Jeff Lamoreaux told us about his experience
with Shadow IT upon joining his company, and how he balanced the need for
agility with the need for good corporate governance.
Vendor Selection – Cathy Bilotta discussed the
importance of ensuring strategic alignment with your chosen cloud provider.
Migration – Dave Krupinski talked about his company’s
journey from dedicated hardware to the public cloud.
We then broke into four breakout sessions to dive deeper
into subtopics of IaaS, internal business models for cloud adoption, cloud
governance, and vendor selection.
There was excellent feedback from panelists and attendees on
the breakout sessions. Dave Krupinski’s group covered a lot of ground,
discussing the reasons for adopting IaaS, adoption challenges, and the
importance of taking incremental steps to ensure the success of your cloud
strategy. Stefan Piesche’s group dove deep into how to evaluate a vendor, and the
value of choosing an all-you-can-eat vendor instead of trying to manage
platform neutrality. Cathy Bilotta’s group discussed the importance of
partnering with your cloud provider at a strategic level to help stay ahead of
enhancements and features, and adapting your internal skill set (supplier
management, legal, contract management) to better embrace a cloud provider.
Overall the event was a great success, and left me wanting
to see more events like this on the cloud in Boston. Thanks to the MassTLC for
making this event happen. I look forward to seeing all of you at the next one.

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