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Why You Need to Invest in Managed AWS Hosting

Abstract

Are you gaining as much value as you could be from your current AWS hosting arrangement?

Finding the best option for your cloud hosting is a challenge many organisations are struggling with, and like them it’s possible you’re missing out on the most cost-effective solution.

In this article, we’ll explore the important role of cloud hosting and highlight the reasons why you’ll benefit from investing in managed AWS hosting.

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Index

The Current State of Cloud Hosting

Cloud technology has come a long way over the past few years, particularly with its use in the business world. Gartner forecasts that global end-user spending on public cloud services will grow 20.4% in 2022 to total $494.7 billion, up from $410.9 billion in 2021.

The AWS cloud platform is now able to power all your organisation’s mission-critical applications and business processes in a sophisticated virtual IT infrastructure.

Following trends driven by the 2020 COVID-19 lockdowns, the cloud has now become the preferred choice for many organisations. This is largely due to how the AWS cloud’s flexibility and agility reflect the requirements of our ‘new normal’ expectations to work from anywhere.

The cloud has become the heartbeat of the business for most of us with a large percentage of our external and internal processes dependent on the technology. With that in mind, the traditional method of IT hosting – rows of old-fashioned servers in cabinets, stored away in cupboards or in large data centres – could soon be a distant memory.

Not only does cloud hosting provide a more cost-effective alternative to the previous physical server-based approach, but it also directly supports the global shift to remote work.

What is AWS Hosting

For anyone who needs a more straightforward definition first, AWS hosting is a method of outsourcing your organisation’s IT infrastructure to a service provider who can supply you with a virtual hosting environment.

Similar to traditional data centres, you can procure the cloud on either a pay-as-you-go model or as a long-term commitment ‘as a service,’ and use the provider’s space in the cloud for yourself. However, unlike traditional IT hosting, solutions exist across a network of connected cloud servers and a wide spectrum of digital resources.

Your IT systems and applications are then deployed via the cloud platform, instead of in a server that exists physically on your premises. This virtual context makes it much easier to scale your IT resources up and down depending on your needs, and gives you a wide range of other advantages too.

One of the most notable of those is that, with AWS hosting, you only pay for the IT infrastructure and resources you consume. This makes it a more cost-effective option than on-premise.

Why? Because you’re making a transition from a capital expenditure (CapEx) model to an operational expenditure model (OpEx), which ultimately allows you to achieve lower total cost of ownership (TCO) and stronger return on investment (ROI).

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Case study:
Oak Software

Choosing the right AWS Partner for supporting existing AWS infrastructure.

How the right cloud management service can improve security & performance for the subscription management of over 1000 publications annually. 

Read the full case study

What are your Challenges with Cloud Hosting?

Another key difference between traditional IT and the cloud is that AWS hosting isn’t just a case of deploying your environment and leaving it alone to run itself.

A cloud-based IT requires continual monitoring, management, and optimisation from whoever is responsible for its hosting. Otherwise, it won’t be able to continue performing as you need it to.

Of course, you want to be able to focus entirely on your own priorities, whether that’s managing your team or running your business. It’s unlikely you have the time or the resources to be constantly worrying about whether your IT systems are operating properly.

Unfortunately, unless you’ve taken a strategic approach to finding the right hosting services, that is a problem you’ll eventually end up facing.

If you’ve read this far, your business likely already has some processes, workflows, or applications hosted in the AWS cloud platform.

If so, do any of the following scenarios sound familiar?

  • You’re working with a platform-specific hosting partner, but are unhappy with the service or want to move to a different provider
  • You had a consultant deploy your cloud for you without a strategy in place, and now you have to plan for the long-term
  • Your existing hosting provider doesn’t offer any additional support, and you need more help maintaining your cloud environment
  • You have an in-house team supporting your cloud, but are facing challenges due to a skills gap
  • You’re experiencing erratic costs and surprise charges.

If any of these issues resonate with you, the time has come to explore different options with managed AWS hosting to find a better solution.

What Are Your Options for AWS Hosting?

There are several options available when it comes to AWS hosting. The important thing is to figure out which will be the most suitable choice for your business’s specific situation.

It’s also worth mentioning here that the most suitable choice right now might not be in a year or six months, so remain open-minded. We’ll explain this in more detail later in the article.

Whether you need to take care of the hosting of an entire cloud-based IT infrastructure, or you only have a few applications in the cloud and need someone to look after your environment, it’s crucial to find a solution that best meets your unique requirements.

The most common hosting options include:

1 – Manage your cloud hosting in-house

If you decide to procure your AWS hosting directly with the cloud provider, you’ll be responsible for all the set-up, configuration, and management of your own virtual IT environment.

This means you’ll have to ensure your team has the cloud-specific skills and experience necessary to keep your cloud running without any problems. This will also take up a significant amount of time and resources for those people.

Unfortunately, this isn’t easy. As mentioned earlier, managing a cloud estate is very different to managing an on-premise IT infrastructure. You might have done this to begin with, and are now looking for a partner to take over the cloud management or cloud hosting for you.

2 – Work with an AWS hosting partner

Alternatively, you can find a partner to host and deploy your workload in the cloud for you. In some cases, this will ideally come with some additional support and consultancy from the partner, but not always.

This tends to be the most common approach organisations take today, especially if they’ve adopted the cloud without a holistic strategy in place.

However, working with an AWS hosting partner or consultant is usually extremely costly, or it can be highly cost-effective when you’re able to find the right one. If you’re relying on multiple partners for different aspects of your cloud infrastructure, and aren’t receiving any additional services from your hosting partner, you could end up significantly over-spending.

What should you consider when choosing between on-premise vs cloud hosting?

When assessing your options or deciding which option to take for your AWS hosting, it’s important to be aware of the trends affecting the cloud market as well.

These considerations may need to be factored in before you make a final decision on where you go next, as they could each have an impact on your bottom line.

Below are the highlights but we have published a complete article on cloud trends which discusses many of these points in more detail.

Please read our article about cloud trends for 2022 / 23 here

IT Chip Shortages

There’s currently a global chip shortage in the enterprise IT market, and this is affecting all the major providers. This means there’s a much longer lead-time than usual to get on-premise hardware, and many large data centres are unable to get enough equipment to support all their customers.

Inflation

With inflation rising globally, the OpEx model of cloud infrastructure-as-a-service is currently a more appealing prospect than investing a large sum into a physical data centre.

The traditional on-premise approach to IT hosting now comes with higher risks than ever before, as the demand for remote work and business agility are at an all-time high.

Businesses are increasingly migrating their systems to the cloud, as it continues to present the most financially sensible option for enterprise IT.

Skills Shortages

The digital skills gap is having an impact across most industries at the moment, and this has been the case since before the COVID-19 pandemic turned the world upside down. For example, in 2019, the Open University’s ‘Bridging the Digital Divide’ report discovered that 88% of UK organisations admitted to facing a shortage of digital skills.

Finding in-house employees who have enough cloud-specific experience is a challenge, especially in a job market that’s recovering from ‘the great resignation.’ These people come at a very high cost these days.

It’s going to be more cost-effective to leverage intelligent automated tools to handle most of your core processes for you, rather than hiring someone new and paying them a hefty salary.

Finding the Best AWS Hosting Partner for Your Business

With all the above trends and changes occurring, we’d highly recommend conducting a regular review of your AWS hosting partner like you would with any other supplier.

Remember you’re building your own IT infrastructure, and cloud technology is commoditising. You can take advantage of different services and solutions from several cloud providers to maximise the value for your organisation.

If you’ve invested in the cloud, you should be aiming to work yourself into a position of being platform-independent. Rather than being tied down exclusively to one platform or one provider, whether that’s AWS or Microsoft Azure, try to actively leverage both simultaneously, and use the flexibility to build a bespoke cloud-based IT estate ideal for your specific requirements.

This applies to your AWS hosting arrangement as well. In an ever-changing cloud landscape, you need a hosting partner who has an in-depth understanding of where everything fits together. This should be someone who stays on top of all the latest options from both providers, and who has knowledge and supporting technology that works across each platform.

You don’t have to settle for a hosting partner that simply hosts your cloud for you and adds no further value, or one who forces you to buy additional services just to keep it monitored, maintained, and supported.

You can work with an AWS cloud specialist who will understand your business goals, then recommend solutions tailored to meet your unique requirements as your business evolves.

Like with any subscription service, if your prices increased; your service suffered; or a better option became available, you’d make a change. With the cloud, you’re not tied into a fixed cost for your hosting technology like you would be with traditional on-premise IT. You should always be looking to help your organisation’s bottom line by remaining conscious of the options available to you, and a great cloud partner will help you achieve that.

Consider a CloudOps Active Management Solution (CAMS) to Enhance Your AWS Hosting

Whatever your current hosting situation, every cloud-based IT infrastructure is improved with the addition of sophisticated automation tools and proactive support services. Our CloudOps Active Management Solution (CAMS) is the ideal answer.

Hosting your IT infrastructure with our CAMS Flex managed service will provide valuable cost savings of 20%.

This is done using a complex algorithm to determine the best performing environment between AWS and Azure for you, delivering significant cost reductions compared with native pricing models. We review your individual cloud environment regularly and make decisions based on your best interests to maximise your savings.

Available across both Azure and AWS, CAMS gives you the best possible hosting solution to fit your business.

  • More predictable and manageable monthly fees
  • Less drain on time, resources, and manpower
  • More opportunity to focus on your business and innovation
  • Superior storage and data transfer allowances
  • Full customisation
  • Full confidence your hosting is taken care of with 24/7 support.

A CAMS Flex hosting arrangement will also grant access to the wealth of advantages and benefits offered by CAMS Core. This comprehensive cloud managed service is something no other hosting provider is able to give you.

Of course, it’s also helpful to work with a team of proven, experienced specialists who deal with this technology every day, and have been doing so for years.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to AWS hosting, you need to make strategic decisions that will be best for your business and your commercial needs.

In today’s cloud landscape, amidst all the changing trends, that means finding a cost-effective option that will still deliver stability, reliability, and consistency. Of course, if IT hosting isn’t core to your business, this isn’t something you should struggle through alone.

Managed AWS hosting services, when approached strategically with the right partner, can add an entirely new dimension to your cloud investment. Cloud hosting done properly will deliver a wealth of benefits and advantages to your organisation when compared to a traditional hosting provider.

The current cloud ecosystem gives you the luxury to create the most cost-effective solution possible without compromising on performance.

A partner like us will also work closely with you as your trusted advisor, providing expertise to help solve your most pressing cloud hosting challenges. This allows you to focus entirely on your own roles and responsibilities, with full confidence your IT infrastructure is in great hands.

If you’re unhappy with your current AWS hosting arrangement and want to reduce your costs, learn more about how CAMS can help you save money and improve performance here.

If you have any questions or need to discuss any specific challenges in more detail, please don’t hesitate to drop us a line and a member of our team will be happy to help.

CAMS is designed specifically to give you full transparency, control, and support, for your cloud infrastructure. Get in touch with a member of our team to learn more, and we’d be happy to help!

 Steve Rastall

Steve Rastall - Managing Director 

Get in touch: Steve.Rastall@igroupltd.co.uk

https://uk.linkedin.com/in/steverastall

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