Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) is a proven way to minimize IT costs while maximizing scalability, security, uptime and resilience. IaaS is also an opportunity to be perplexed by all the choices in technology and service providers, potentially winding up with a hodgepodge solution that undermines your business goals and bottom line.

That complexity is one reason enterprises are increasingly turning to managed IaaS. The migration, from the initial assessment through design and deployment, followed by day-to-day management that may require new technical skills and expertise, can be a time-consuming, bewildering process. Managed IaaS ensures that the migration goes off without a hitch and that the on-premises and/or cloud solutions deliver on expectations. It also frees IT staff to focus on other tasks, like supporting the business and its needs rather than the daily care and feeding of the infrastructure.

Experts Provide Start-to-Finish Support for IT Initiatives

For example, we recently had a customer that wanted to replace its aging infrastructure with a fully managed cloud, but wasn’t comfortable handling the migration by itself. The customer reached out to us and we found a state-of-the-art data center provider, configured all the components, added a cloud-based Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) solution and now manage all the organization’s on-premises and cloud resources. IT staff with cloud expertise can be hard to come by, and in this case, our customer opted to hand off the deployment and management of new technology rather than grapple with the personnel shortfall they had around the cloud solutions.

Other enterprises want help migrating to a hybrid environment as part of a data center refresh. In those cases, CDW can architect, deploy and manage the new on-premises infrastructure, plus configure and manage the new cloud experience through solutions such as Microsoft Azure.

Other customers turn to CDW because they want a managed IaaS solution that can be delivered on a major scale — a job that many organizations simply don’t have the resources to do in-house. For one national retailer, CDW designed the infrastructure, built everything at its configuration centers and then installed the gear at all 3,800 stores. We also provided software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) connectivity for each location, together with managed backup and all service desk services. This customer opted to turn to a provider that could deliver on multiple facets of this deployment, rather than struggle to pull together the resources themselves.

An Orchestrated Solution Helps IT Achieve Multiple Goals

The experience of this national retailer also highlights the advantage of choosing a managed services partner with both design and build capabilities. Working with a single partner can eliminate finger-pointing hassles, ensure continuity and protect the customer’s investment. When the process is streamlined through a single provider that is designing a solution with service level guarantees included as a deliverable for managed services, our customers are more successful in achieving their defined business outcomes.

One characteristic common to all of these customers is that they had plenty of choices for cloud and on-premises infrastructure. That’s because CDW partners with dozens of vendors and providers, so it can customize a solution that meets each customer’s unique business requirements, goals and workflows.

The managed service team can also bring in additional CDW experts to support applications that will leverage IaaS platforms. A good example of this is Internet of Things beacons, which retailers can use to alert shoppers about promos when they’re near or in a store.

For many organizations, migrating to a managed IaaS environment is an ideal time to maximize security and business continuity planning. For example, managed firewalls and Cloud Backup as a Service are two effective ways to mitigate ransomware. Cloud backup and DRaaS also ensure that revenue, productivity and customer satisfaction are protected when a site suffers a major disaster, like a hurricane. That’s one more way that managed IaaS can help IT leaders sleep easy instead of sweating the details and risks.

To learn more about partnering with CDW, contact your CDW account manager or visit CDW.com/IaaS.

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