This is Part Two of the “Evaluating Container Management Platforms” series. To view Part Three, click here. To view the rest of the documents in this series, click here.
The pace of adoption for next generation (container-microservices) technology has picked up markedly over the past twelve months, and yet many enterprises continue to defer expanded investment. Evaluator Group advises (and lays out the reasoning below) that it is time to place a strategic investment in this key area.
Information technology executives understand that in order to successfully accomplish the digital transformation of their businesses, they must invest in next generation computing approaches and architectures, including Kubernetes, containers, operational automation, and application modernization. Some Operations executives are being chartered by their companies to transition the work of in-house DevOps teams to productize it for scalability and usability by a less technical community. Others must determine how to enable newly acquired software and services (microservice-enabled) which require container architecture to effectively function. Both types of leaders must also execute organizational and process changes needed to enable broader adoption of a new way of doing business.
But many enterprise IT executives have been reluctant to expand investment beyond a DevOps sandbox or simple test environment – to make a broader commitment to the future architectural plan. There have certainly been good reasons to be reluctant. Many companies are still focused on another strategic initiative: determining how to effectively leverage the public cloud. It must seem impossible to concurrently consider another major venture. The rapid pace of open-source innovation surrounding containers has made it difficult to keep track all the new offerings and functionality or to know whom to trust – the idea of waiting until things mature is very appealing. Talented staff with the skills to leverage this new architecture are expensive and difficult to find; many experts are firmly entrenched in well-paying jobs inside the major cloud service providers. Perhaps the strongest reason of all – this transition to next generation architecture is the most disruptive move since the industry advanced from the mainframe to client-server in the early 1980s. Legacy applications are not easy to migrate. It’s difficult to know where and how to start. Success also demands the design and execution of new processes and culture across application development, test, deployment, and operations. With all of these elements to manage, the risks are not trivial. It is not surprising that people have wanted to see a bit more success before diving into the pool.
Nevertheless, it is time for IT executives to stop waiting and start investing because the benefits are proven and real, and, while modernization carries risks, it is certain that further delay will cause companies to lose competitive value in the market.
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