Even in the year 2015, many companies are not familiar with cloud computing. This is largely because decision makers do not always realize the associated value proposition. In the upcoming blog posts, I’m going to talk about the most common reasons, why companies use cloud computing. The target group of this blog is companies, which have (almost) no experience in this area.
Go to your system engineer and ask: „How long does it take to get a new server for my software project?“.
What’s the answer? Five weeks? Ten weeks? Or even six months?
That’s horrible! And let’s say, you need the server for an important evaluation (e.g. a new framework/technology). What are you doing with the infrastructure when the experiment ends?
It’s important to know, that experiments provide the basis for innovations. Many successful business models and products were developed by a „trail and error“ process. So if you can perform fast and cost-efficient experiments, you definitely have a competitive advantage. The following graphic illustrates this issue.
This is called the „build-measure-learn“ loop and a common approach for experimenting. The section „Prototype – Measure – Data“ is very critical, because prototypes and data analysis need runtime environments. Cloud computing can help you to to provide these environments in a convenient way.
- Setup your servers within minutes, when your experiment/prototyping starts.
- Terminate your servers, when your experiment/prototyping ends.
Under these conditions, you simplify workflows and encourage a culture of innovation. Your „build-measure-learn“ loop gets faster and more cost-efficient. Besides, it is not so bad when an experiment fails, because the „collateral damage“ is quite low through the usage of cloud computing. That’s the reason why on-demand solutions are perfectly suited for this kind of use case.
A common SAP related example is SAP HANA. It can be expensive and time-consuming to provide an on-premise runtime environment for this technology. This fact can deter an organization from working with SAP HANA. However, within the scope of innovations, it’s important for IT departments to gain hands-on experience. One easy way to solve this problem is the use of cloud technologies. The SAP Cloud Appliance Library allows a simple provision of different SAP solutions. You find more information right here.
The lesson is clear: Experimenting is a critical innovation skill! And cloud computing can help you to improve it!
In the next posts, i am going to discuss further topics in the context of cloud computing as simple as possible.
Thanks for reading!
How to Use Experiments to Build an Innovation Culture by Tim Kastelle