4 ways to accelerate your digital transformation with containers

containers
Shutterstock

It’s been a few years now since enterprises en masse started digital transformation (DX) projects. In the early days, only a few had a clear picture of what it would take to get where they wanted to be. At that time, change (particularly in legacy-driven IT) was viewed largely from the risk assessment perspective and only marginally from the innovation side of the story.

Today, things are different. More and more companies are feeling the need to transform in order to keep pace with strong competition in their market, usually from cloud-native start-ups or established market players offering more innovative solutions.

As a result, businesses are turning to modernized IT platforms that enable agile development and rapid innovation. In particular, they’re focusing on a relatively recent and very powerful addition to enterprise DX strategies: containerized environments.

Containers unlocked – transformation unleashed

Containers are powerful tools that can unleash the full potential of your company, providing a foundation for exceptional flexibility in responding to external and internal demands. The move to containers is more than a technology change; it’s also a cultural and mindset change. Moving from a legacy operations culture to a container-first culture fundamentally changes the way organizations work, causing many disruptions along the way. However, the results are well worth the effort.

Indeed, many companies find the results so impressive they’re choosing containerized architectures and platforms as the basis of entirely new IT strategies. It’s not much of an exaggeration to say that containerization can do for companies’ development processes what the international shipping of physical containers did for streamlining global commerce.

Below are four ways containers can support and accelerate your company’s transformation efforts:

1. Enhance integration of developer teams and IT departments
Containers can help these key resources become one delivery team of enablers for continuous integration and deployment (CI/CD). Using CI/CD, your teams create a real-time feedback loop with a constant stream of small iterative changes -- accelerating change, improving code quality, and ensuring adherence with business use cases.

Modern development pipelines are fast, continuous, and automated. The goal is to deliver software that’s reliable, secure, and fully tested. For example, companies can integrate automated load testing by putting Apache JMeter into the pipeline. Automation and scripting can deploy a container from a newly created image and then stage it for further testing in a sandboxed environment.

Containers can also help companies accelerate and ease the onboarding of applications, improve training of DevOps teams, and deploy AI and data workloads. And, organizations achieve all of these goals while keeping everything measured and completely under control.

2. Foster simplicity and speed of business innovation with microservices
Containerization enables app architecture to evolve from monolithic code bases with waterfall development to loosely coupled microservices that allow applications to be developed in an agile fashion. These containerized microservices can be easily shared, deployed, updated, tested, and scaled instantly and independently of the other services that make up the application.

3. Reduce digital transformation risks and costs with infrastructure optimization
Optimization is not just about cost reduction; it’s about ensuring the right amount of resources are available at the right time and using them efficiently. Containers help you optimize the utilization and cost of your IT infrastructure.

Because containers are lightweight ways of packaging and isolating app workloads, they allow multiple workloads to run on the same physical or virtual server without any conflict. Businesses can consolidate datacenters, integrate IT assets from mergers and acquisitions, and enable portability to private or public clouds -- all while reducing the footprint of their operating systems and servers.

4. Enhance business flexibility by enabling hybrid, cloud-agnostic IT
Containers guarantee that apps are cloud-enabled – ready to move across on- and off-premises infrastructure with a high level of control. Containers are infrastructure-independent; they ensure that everything the app needs to run is packaged and transported together from one site to another. They provide flexibility and choice for businesses to adopt a hybrid cloud, single-cloud, or multi-cloud environment without conflicts.

Turbocharge your use cases

That last point is a right development and crucial one, because many companies are still struggling to unlock the full potential of containerization in modernizing their legacy applications for on-prem environments. Security challenges, in particular, are at the top of the list of barriers to container adaption. However, with the security practices and tools, it is possible to address some of these challenges.

For businesses considering container-enabled innovation, HPE can help. The company recently announced that the HPE Container Platform and services are now available. The HPE Container Platform is the industry’s first enterprise-grade container platform designed to support both cloud-native and non-cloud-native applications using 100% open source Kubernetes. The platform brings the speed and efficiency of containers to both cloud-native microservices apps and non-cloud-native monolithic apps. Additionally, it can support and accelerate containerization use cases across the board, enabling organizations to lower costs with bare-metal containers and reduce risk with enterprise-grade security.

Visit the HPE website to learn more about the HPE Container Platform. Visit HPE Pointnext Services for help getting the most out of the HPE Container Platform and unlocking the full power of containers for your transformation.

___________________________________

About Christian Sestu

sestu
Christian Sestu is a Cloud Architect for HPE Pointnext Services, Workload Management and Analytics. Experienced in containerization, scalability, and orchestration, Christian has 20 years of experience designing and delivering enterprise IT solutions for customers. Currently, he is focused on architecting solutions with HPE Container Platform, OpenStack, Docker, and Kubernetes.

Copyright © 2020 IDG Communications, Inc.