September 17, 2013 | Written by: Diego Rosa Castilho
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Nowadays, we have a lot of advantages available using the cloud structure. We see new ideas and solutions being provided by thousands of companies at the same time, we see whitespaces for a new design and services or solutions not developed due to lack of investment or market interest. Taking into account the existent layers (infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), software as a service (SaaS) and business process as a service (BPaaS)) I believe there are unexplored spaces.
From my perspective, we could have an additional layer controlling all the current layers (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS and BPaaS). It could be called enterprise resource planning (ERP) and would be a unique layer controlling an automating actual tools or service used in IaaS, PaaS, SaaS and BPaaS. We would have intelligence managing modules according to request.
Where would the ERP be?
The ERP would be placed on a bare metal layer to automate and manage all resources on demand. Monitoring, workflows and requests could all be totally automated. For example: An alert has been created informing of a lack of resources: memory, processor (CPU) and space to run an application. The ERP will deploy another Host, add it into cluster, set the network, set SAN to provide more space, create a virtual machine (VM), install the application and do the balancing without any intervention regarding physical and logical parts.
We can go further. The ERP could manage all activities starting on bare metal until logical. We would have modules created according to client’s request. Here, we are talking about an idea to have a system (ERP) controlling physical side until logical side.
Let me try to provide an example: A client requests an application (app) through the fictional web site called X and indicates the number of users that will use the app. Hence, the ERP will set the switch (Virtual Networks (VLANS) and IP address), set the SAN, zoning providing a logical unit number (Luns), deploy new host, create virtual machines (VM), install and set up the operating system (OS), install and configure the applications, configure integration with others application, set monitoring, backup, capacity and so on. It means we are going to have a new environment built from scratch automatically without manual or human intervention.
Besides, we are going to have a totally automated management. It means, when we got some alerts, the ERP would correct them automatically. It can be lack of space, hardware issues, events, lack of resource and so on.
Now, think in changing the factors, the ERP could also be offered to work inside client’s business as (BPaaS). Then, we could have modules to read all process, and automate them. Imagine a medicine being injected in your body and running in your blood. It seems how the ERP would work in their business to control, map and automate everything.
Lastly, I have described an idea to fill out whitespaces missing regarding cloud solutions offered nowadays. Thus, whatever be the platform or tools combined, it is important that we are offering intelligence as a unique solution.
It makes me remember Steve Jobs when he returned to Apple. He was able to reduce the product line down from 350 to 10, and focused only on a few machines that were perfected.
In today’s business, we have a lot of services and solutions available to be implemented, whereas, I would ask, which of them is least profitable? You might answer that it depends on the size of the client, how much money they want to invest and so on. I agree, but, I would like to persist and ask again: If we had a unique solution (ERP) to be offered, would that solution still be the least profitable?