Benefits of public cloud to help erase technology debt
Insights 7 minutes read

Benefits of public cloud to help erase technology debt

Published on
June 27, 2024

Technology debt (also known as ‘tech debt’) occurs when a business makes quick fixes in its technology systems at the expense of its longer term prosperity. To avoid this issue, a growing number of Australian businesses are choosing to undertake a public cloud migration to bring down costs and increase operational efficiency.

In this article, we’ll look at some of the benefits of public cloud migrations, and provide guidance for making a successful transition from on-premises technology to a public cloud system such as Azure

Why migrate to a cloud service?

Public cloud services provide a variety of IT infrastructure capabilities such as servers, storage, and applications. Many providers offer pay-as-you-go access to the cloud, so expenditure can be adjusted and scaled.

Reducing IT costs is one of the biggest reasons why a business might choose to migrate to a public cloud, but there are also other factors at play. These include better protection from cyber attacks, increased agility, growth acceleration, and the opportunity to leverage new technologies.

How a public cloud can help with technology debt

Although moving to a public cloud isn’t a miracle solution to tech debt (we’ll provide more information later in this article), a well-planned migration can provide significant financial advantages. 

Russell Craig, National Technology Officer at Microsoft New Zealand, explains that “Tech debt arises when speed of delivery is prioritised ahead of optimal architecture or coding, resulting in a higher number of patches and workarounds in a business’s existing tech stack.” To combat this and reduce costs, he advises businesses to use public clouds “in a methodical way”. 

Clouds can “help to address some of the challenges created by ongoing skills shortages, reducing the burden on in-house IT teams”. This will ultimately free up your team for innovation. 

Let’s take a closer look at the cost benefits of a public cloud when approached in a structured and systematic way. 

Scalable and flexible

Public cloud platforms offer scalable solutions that can grow with your business. With flexible resources, businesses can better manage their workloads and accommodate growth without compromising performance.

Scalability allows companies to avoid the limitations of legacy systems and infrastructure, reducing the need for quick fixes that contribute to tech debt. Whenever there’s a spike in demand, public clouds make it possible for businesses to alter their resources to match their needs.

Cost efficient

Moving to a public cloud system can enhance cost efficiencies by eliminating the need for large upfront investments in hardware and associated ongoing maintenance costs. Public clouds also eliminate the need for purchasing and renewing software licences – see our article about migrating VMware to public clouds for more information about the rising costs of internal cloud systems.

Update on legacy systems

In a public cloud, the cloud provider takes on the responsibility of maintaining and updating the infrastructure, ensuring that businesses always have access to the latest technology without the expense of purchasing new equipment or hiring additional IT staff. This shift reduces capital expenditures and operational costs, allowing businesses to allocate their resources more efficiently and focus on strategic initiatives rather than ongoing maintenance and upgrades of outdated systems.

Improved security

The standard of public cloud security is generally very high – all the reputable providers have inbuilt security features to keep data and applications protected. These features usually include advanced encryption for data at rest and in transit, identity and access management (IAM) to control who can access resources, and multi-factor authentication (MFA) for enhanced user verification.

Other security benefits of a public cloud include compliance with various industry standards and regulations, regular security audits, and automated security updates and patches. Additionally, public clouds employ sophisticated threat detection and response systems, such as intrusion detection and prevention systems (IDPS), firewalls, and security information and event management (SIEM) solutions to mitigate potential security threats in real-time.

Up-to-date maintenance

Public cloud providers have dedicated teams of security experts who continuously monitor for vulnerabilities and threats, promptly addressing any issues with automated updates. This proactive approach significantly reduces the risk of security breaches and exploits that could occur in outdated systems. You can also access the built-in backup and recovery capabilities that most public cloud providers offer, which will help to improve business continuity.

Access to new technologies

Most public cloud platforms provide instant access to advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, big data analytics, and Internet of Things (IoT) services, allowing businesses to innovate and stay competitive without the need for significant upfront investments. Cloud providers also regularly introduce new features and improvements, enabling companies to leverage the latest advancements without having to invest in additional hardware and software.

Increased productivity and collaboration

A public cloud provides a suite of integrated tools and services that allow employees to work together seamlessly from any location. Cloud-based applications, such as document sharing, real-time editing, and video conferencing tools, enable teams to collaborate more effectively and efficiently. Features like automatic synchronisation ensure that everyone has access to the latest versions of files and projects, reducing confusion and errors.

How a public cloud migration may contribute to technology debt

Although public clouds do offer the potential for cost savings, a hasty migration could have the opposite effect. This is why it’s important to partner with the right cloud provider – one that will help your business create a well-architected framework that ensures your people and systems are working in sync. Our article about why you need a ‘pit team’ for your public cloud services provides guidance for getting this right. 

Here are some common pitfalls that can lead to cost blowouts when moving to a public cloud:

  • Incomplete migration: Leaving legacy systems partially integrated can create complex dependencies and inefficiencies.
  • Lack of optimisation: Failing to optimise workloads for the cloud environment can lead to higher costs and inefficiencies.
  • Underestimated complexity: Overlooking the complexities of cloud management can result in rushed or inadequate solutions.
  • Insufficient training: Not adequately training staff on new cloud tools and processes can lead to misuse and inefficiencies.
  • Deferred maintenance: Postponing updates and optimisations can accumulate issues that need significant future investment to resolve.
  • Temporary workarounds: Implementing quick fixes during migration instead of permanent solutions can create future technical debt.
  • Overprovisioning resources: Allocating more cloud resources than necessary due to poor planning can lead to unnecessary costs.
  • Neglecting governance: Lacking proper cloud governance and policies can result in security and compliance issues needing rectification later.

Public cloud offerings at Interactive

Azure

Microsoft is one of the world’s best public cloud providers, setting industry standards for security and flexibility. The Azure public cloud provides seamless hybrid flexibility that’s designed to reduce costs while increasing developer productivity, plus they offer the most comprehensive set of compliance offerings of any cloud provider. 

Azure makes it easy to efficiently build, run, and manage applications on-premises, in multiple clouds. It also offers flexible pricing options, so you only pay for what you use. Azure’s multilayer security is trusted by enterprises, governments, and startups – giving you the confidence that comes from knowing your data is protected. 

Cloud Services

Interactive can assist with your public cloud migration while working to minimise technology debt within your business. Our team can help you unlock new levels of efficiency through the power of cloud services, quickly delivering agility and improving your security posture.

Interactive offers comprehensive Azure migration services including:

  • Assessment and planning
  • Migration strategy development
  • Cloud implementation
  • Cloud optimisation
  • Management and support

Additionally, with Interactive Anywhere, we can seamlessly manage your IT operating environment, sites and staff – allowing you to focus on what matters.

Flexible Azure solutions for resilience and growth.

Access the expertise you need to maximise the benefit of your Azure investments.

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