CIO keeps bipolar IT environment in check

BrandPost By CIO Editor on behalf of Sentia Group
Mar 12, 2020
IT Leadership

A faster time-to-market, a higher information rate, anticipating new business models, the emergence of low code/no code platforms and citizen developers are just some of the challenges facing CIOs on a daily basis.

Conceptual illustration of the convergence of disparate technology threads in a binary environment.
Credit: Panuwat Sikham / Getty Images

by Mirco Wienen, CTO at Sentia Group

At the same time requirements in respect of stability, reliability and security are becoming ever more stringent, meaning CIOs find themselves constantly doing the splits. Finding the right balance between meeting the requirements laid down by the organisation and ensuring compliance with regulations is therefore the main task IT managers have to deal with.

The above-mentioned challenges not only call for the IT infrastructure to be organised differently but also cause new questions to be raised from a compliance and security perspective. How do CIOs guarantee the availability of data and applications that comply with important privacy legislation? Furthermore, management of the infrastructure is becoming increasingly complex and cost containment is again high on the agenda. It is up to the CIOs to take control and find an answer to these questions. In this respect, landing zones can provide a solution.

Landing zones

The use of landing zones in AWS, GCP and Microsoft Azure cloud environments, for example, is the first part of the solution. By providing a controlled playground for software development and infrastructure management, CIOs have control over what happens within their (cloud) architecture. The advantages offered by a landing zone ultimately lead to faster turnaround times, a greater degree of security and compliance and a tighter control of cloud expenses.

The fact of the matter is that in a landing zone applications are developed within predetermined parameters, meaning that developers work within a defined playing field and that security and compliance already constitute an integral part of a landing zone. CIOs thereby have control over the entire life cycle of the applications developed within their cloud environment and are assured that these are in line with the organisation’s security and compliance policy. Everyone can work in a secure and compliant fashion in a landing-zone environment, both in the design phase and the operational phase.

Shorter time-to-market

The use of landing zones serves to reduce the time-to-market of new applications, resulting in DevOps processes being set up more quickly and efficiently. Scalability is another major advantage, since it is easy to carry out an extension to new environments. A notorious pitfall for CIOs is the loss of control of cloud expenses due to a lack of a clear overview of the solutions being used and the costs associated with them. The aforementioned parameters give engineers the freedom to develop new initiatives without this leading to unexpected and unnecessary costs.

The use of landing zones in the IT architecture can thus help avoid CIOs having to do the splits. Engineers can carry on working to their heart’s content within the set frameworks, applications are developed and delivered securely and quickly, and the costs are clear and controllable. In short, the CIO is again in control of the bipolar IT environment.