Equinix is working with a number of pioneering enterprise customers, such as General Electric and Lincoln Financial, and partners, such as Datapipe, to develop new and inventive IT and colocation strategies. Next week, these companies will be joining Tony Bishop, vice president, Equinix Enterprise Marketing, to discuss their experiences during an enterprise customer panel at the Gartner Data Center, Infrastructure & Operations Management Conference.
Bishop recently gave us a preview of some of the challenges these enterprises have been facing and the best practices they’re using to incorporate leading interconnection and cloud strategies into their IT and colocation plans.
Q: When the companies on your panel first came to Equinix, what were some of the business problems they were trying to solve?
A: The common challenge for most companies has been a user and application problem. Traditionally, enterprises whose users are having performance issues when they access applications throw more computing and bandwidth at the problem, especially in globally distributed organizations. But the primary problem really is their interconnection strategy. Most networks were built to be system-centric, rather than user-centric. Enterprises need to think more about driving an enterprise interconnection strategy for everything (users, applications, data, IT, business processes, the cloud, etc.) and bringing services closer to users.
The future of enterprise computing is in taking a more regional approach, where you are bringing applications and data to where the user resides, rather than the other way around. This approach of pushing IT services to the edge of the network also extends to private and public cloud models, where applications are more interactive and require greater responsiveness.
Q: In what ways has Equinix helped enterprises address these interconnection challenges?
A: We empower enterprises to deploy an interconnection oriented approach that marries users, networks, clouds and other IT capabilities. We provide them with a carrier-neutral, hub-based platform, the Equinix Performance Hub, which scales and extends their interconnection abilities to the furthest edge of their network. This enables them to take their ‘spaghetti-mess’ of users, applications and networking and put everything closer together to better optimize traffic flow.
Q: What are some of the lessons learned from helping enterprises migrate to the cloud?
A: One size does not fit all when moving an application to the cloud. This is a very new way to think for enterprises coming from a single-IT source mentality. Companies now have choices. They may source an application from Salesforce.com, but use AWS for the storage, while importing data from MS Azure database. This is how our customers are leveraging multicloud computing today ̶ they match the best cloud service to their application, connect to it via the best interconnect, and seamlessly deliver cloud services to their users on demand.
Once applications are moved to the cloud, they also unlock some new behaviors. For example, enterprises can use automated software provisioning to dial application and data services up or down. This is really a very powerful concept for them since they’ve never experienced that level of flexibility with their fixed IT infrastructures.
The Equinix Cloud Exchange plays an important role in bringing together distributed users and cloud services. It enables the dynamic environment required to make fast connections to hybrid cloud and multicloud services and manage their usage. If they can’t connect to multicloud services in an aggregated and automated way, companies can suffer poor performance and manageability within their cloud infrastructures. This makes it extremely difficult to deliver cloud services to global users efficiently and economically.
Q: What are some best practices for deploying successful IT and colocation interconnection strategies?
- Think about where your users are and how they access applications and data – understand what service levels are expected across regions when it comes to user experience and application performance.
- Consider that your business has different points of regional presence and requirements and explore how you can better serve globally distributed organizations at a local level.
- Find an interconnection and colocation provider that can help you reliably support a demand-side, rather than a supply-side networking strategy – they should enable you to consistently marry users and applications across multiple geographies worldwide.
Working with our customers and partners to implement these practices, we have seen them greatly increase their ability to innovate, drive new levels of organizational performance and grow their businesses.
Join us at Gartner Data Center and learn more about our enterprise customers’ deployments. Our panel session with customers GE and Lincoln Financial, and partner Datapipe, will be held on Dec 3, at 3:45 p.m. in Veronese 2401B.
Equinix will be located at Booth 361, Hall C of The Venetian. Stop by early for a free Starbucks gift and enter our raffle to win an iPad mini.