Digital transformation in the remote work era

by September 20, 2021 0 comments

The pandemic has changed the world dramatically, now most of the businesses are online, and employees are working remotely. Rahi Systems offers different services including Data Center Solutions, Enterprise IT Infrastructure, Networking & Security, Cloud Infrastructure, and AV Solutions which help businesses to create an integrated environment that drives efficiencies and gives the customer a competitive advantage.

We discussed with Sushil Goyal, Co-founder and Managing Director, Rahi Systems to understand how they helped businesses, trends and more.

Enabling remote work during the pandemic

During the pandemic, businesses were having trouble connecting with their team. Due to limitations with the video conferencing system, we implemented Zoom Video Conferencing Solution which completely transformed the communication channels. Moreover, to support and facilitate remote working we added multiple offerings.

With Elevate Subscription Services (ESS), we deliver a platform as a service (PaaS) which is typically known as the most complex SaaS infrastructure for organizations to implement. Through our extensive industry experience, we streamline the setup, deployment and managed services for organizations. The global pandemic presented an opportunity to truly understand what will be demanded by organizations in the future and how organizations’ critical infrastructure needs will need to be supported. Hence, we came up with this offering.

To accommodate their work-from-home staff, several companies have either expanded their existing VDI system or installed new VDI technologies. There has also been a significant rise in the use of Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS), in which a cloud service provider delivers VDI capabilities for a monthly subscription fee. The value of VDI and DaaS in this “new normal” is clear. By centralizing the desktop environment in the data center or hosting it in the cloud, VDI and DaaS give remote workers access to the applications and data they need using virtually any device.

Data centers trends especially in the new normal business scenario

The new normal has changed working models worldwide. Employees have resorted to hybrid work culture and as a result, companies have shifted to cloud-based data centers. Gartner’s research predicted the user spending of $200 Billion by the end of 2021 on data center infrastructure which is 6% higher than the 2020 levels. Innovation, efficiency and sustainability will be the driving force behind any data center technology going forward. Some trends that we are seeing are:

Cloud-based paradigm shift in DCIM – A cloud-based data center differs completely from a traditional data center. Unlike a traditional data center which consists of servers, routers, storage systems, panels etc, cloud-based data center does not need to be set up in an office or any place – it is all on the cloud. The data stored on the cloud is secured and stored on cloud servers after fragmenting and duplicating it across various locations. In case of failure, service providers ensure the security of your backup data and help you get online with low downtime.

Sustainability will be the key – With increasing usage and more dependability on IT infrastructure everything is scaling and going ‘Hyper’, with this comes the environmental costs they bring in with their enormous size. Data Centers are now trying to operate on renewable energy to optimize their resource utilization and reduce environmental impacts. The trend will continue and we will be seeing more and more innovations in sustainable components with improved efficiency.

Hyper-scale data centers – Hyper-scale Data Centers are huge warehouse-like structures having their own servers, routers, storage system, powerhouse and networks. This is generally used for big data and cloud-based applications. With the ever-increasing demand for data, hyper-scale data centers are expected to grow at an exponential rate in the next decade.

Remote management of IT infrastructure – A Data center runs continuously and never stops, it requires the physical presence of technicians and data center managers to operate it with no or least downtime. With everyone locked up in a room due to the pandemic, Remote Infrastructure Management (RIM) is the only solution. One of the latest trends emerging out of the pandemic is Remote Infrastructure Management (RIM) to manage the IT infrastructure of the company remotely in parts or completely. RIM includes remote monitoring of security & network services, desktop administration, database and server administration.

Digital transformation in the foreseeable future

The COVID-19 pandemic and shift to remote work have underscored the importance of embracing digital technologies. Despite an overall decline in IT investments, many organizations are accelerating their digital transformation (DX) initiatives. Here are some trends which we are witnessing:

IT modernization – Many organizations are leveraging the cloud to support their DX initiatives, but that doesn’t mean on-premises IT infrastructure is going away. In fact, the 2021 Tech Trends report from Deloitte finds that organizations are modernizing their IT infrastructure to reduce operational costs and technical debt. This frees up the budget for the adoption of strategic technologies that form the foundation of digital transformation.

Multi-cloud integration – The multi-cloud strategy has become ubiquitous, providing a means to avoid vendor lock-in and maintain flexibility. It has become especially important during the pandemic as a means of supporting work-from-home models. Now organizations are looking to utilize tools that streamline multi-cloud management and containerization that enables the orchestration of workloads across multiple clouds.

Artificial intelligence (AI) – The 2020 McKinsey Global Survey on the state of AI found that half (50 per cent) of respondents said their organizations have implemented AI to automate at least one business function. Service operations, product and service development, and sales and marketing are the primary departments implementing AI applications. AI facilitates DX by improving efficiency, minimizing errors and predicting customer behaviour.

Real-time data analysis – The ability to process and analyse data in real-time speeds decision-making, reduces risk and drives innovation. In light of that, many organizations are adopting more powerful platforms, highly scalable architectures and edge computing as part of their DX initiatives. These technologies help ensure fast, uninterrupted access to all types of data across the enterprise.

Protection against cyber-attacks on-premise and cloud

Data centers hold sensitive or proprietary information, such as customer data or intellectual property, and security plays a crucial role in securing the information held by the data centers both digitally and physically to protect them from external threats and attacks.

When organisations move to the cloud, data is stored in multiple data centers that are geo-independent, with redundancy implemented throughout the system. Large cloud providers also protect availability through virtualization. When servers are virtualized in the cloud, providers can easily migrate the servers from one data center to another if a failure occurs.

Whereas on-premises, it takes a lot of time and money to prevent physical theft. To completely protect on-premises servers, organisations implement heavy security, with guards, mantraps and locked cages.

Hybrid clouds challenges

The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in more Indian enterprises turning to a hybrid cloud model, according to a study by cloud infrastructure firm Nutanix. The Enterprise Cloud Index found that 63% of Indian enterprises increased their investment in hybrid cloud as a direct result of the pandemic compared to 46% globally. Cloud infrastructure is now a critical component of IT infrastructure, as Indian enterprises branch further into investing in digitization and look for secure alternatives for their workloads. Flexibility and security are the top factors that enterprises are looking at in terms of choosing the right environment for their workloads. Simultaneously, there are challenges while building a hybrid cloud architecture:

Migration- Migrating to a single or centrally managed hybrid cloud involves integrating different specific cloud brands and providers, and their native or proprietary features and components (such as databases, machine learning, and native monitoring systems).

Governance- Regardless of the existing systems of private or public clouds, the management of a hybrid cloud that incorporates multiple systems is proving to be more complex.

Security- Risks and threats are amplified in a multi-cloud environment. When data passes between different cloud environments, it is vulnerable to a lot of attacks. Employees can access customer data from the private cloud or on-premises data center, there are potential risks posed by the devices they use, which may be connected to other networks beyond the organization and not fully secured.

Compliance- As hybrid cloud deployments are primarily the domain of large organizations, regulations governing the use and storage of sensitive customer data is a huge concern.

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