The cloud market has become a hotbed of creativity thanks to increased global adoption, innovation from industry leaders, and competition.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a driving force in this transformational shift. With an estimated 32% of the market share, they're constantly pushing the boundaries of possibility and pioneering industry-leading changes in the space. Meanwhile, players such as Azure (which we are also specialists in) are providing healthy competition that’s helping to drive innovation across the industry.
As a proud AWS partner, we're sharing how we help customers determine if AWS is suitable for them and some of the top features that make it the industry standard.
The cloud market and AWS
The contemporary cloud market
Rian Brooks-Kane, Senior Solutions Architect at Idea 11, shares why it's such an exciting time to be in the cloud space as an AWS partner:
"You have these big giants going at it trying to be the leader in the market. This means they need to be constantly innovating, bringing new technologies, capabilities, and features to the market. They remain competitive—we all get to benefit from that."
As the global market for cloud technologies grows predominantly in developing nations and Asian markets, these giants are vying to corner industries and expand their cloud offerings.
Rapid expansion and adoption have facilitated some unique solutions, and businesses are now seeing cloud as a must-have as opposed to a nice-to-have — facilitating massive capital investment in the space and exciting developments.
Why AWS is leading the charge
Rian explains that although competition is close - "The gap isn't as large as it used to be. Now it is much closer," - AWS still maintains a stronghold on the market.
The sheer scale, experience, and resourcefulness of the AWS enterprise means they're able to take significant risks and innovate, meeting the growing demands in the market faster and at scale—these benefits stem from the overriding Amazon philosophies of inventing and simplifying, and a culture centred around customer obsession.
Rian continues, "AWS has never been afraid to try new things; they have a culture where failure is OK. They are always willing to push the envelope, listen to what customers need, and build services and solutions that either the market has never had before or do it in a better way."
As an AWS partner, we're privileged to work with cutting-edge solutions and to be at the forefront of new tech.
What does it mean to be an AWS partner?
"Idea 11 has an extremely close relationship with AWS and the AWS team; we've been a partner since 2013," shares Rian.
Along with accumulating over 100+ AWS certifications, five partner programs, and two competencies as an AWS partner, we maintain a close interpersonal relationship with the team.
"We have fortnightly partnership meetings with AWS. They come and work from our office; we have lunch & learns with AWS experts for our staff. We are extremely proactive on the certification side and run internal programs."
In addition, as an AWS Ambassador, one of only a few hundred globally, Rian has been recognised as having exceptional proficiency, technical expertise, and dedication to the AWS community and product. This position allows Rian to access advanced knowledge and develop best practices for technical delivery right at the forefront of the latest AWS developments.
Due to our privileged relationship with AWS, we can offer services with the most up-to-date information and insights.
Choosing the right cloud service: advice from an AWS partner
Choosing the right cloud for your enterprise will depend on carefully assessing your strategy, compliance capabilities, security practices, and a range of additional considerations.
As an AWS advanced consulting partner and a Microsoft Azure partner, we can jump in and do a deep dive into your tech needs to determine the right path to cloud for you.
"It depends on what you are trying to do. Your investment level. Skill sets of your team. Can we leverage what you've got already?", says Rian.
Clients looking to modernise and take advantage of the native cloud architecture are often better suited to AWS. We refer to these clients as 'builders,' building upon the AWS cloud foundation.
"There are so many different types of cloud users out there. One type that gravitates to AWS is the “builders.” People in the organisation that are changing it up in the way of building software."
These may be software or SaaS companies focused on innovation and creating features and functionality that their competitors may not have. The cost-effective nature of AWS and its robust building blocks allow users to try new things and experiment with little downside.
“Innovation can be very quickly stifled by costs and lack of access to an environment you can easily play in. You're never going to innovate if you're not willing to experiment and fail, and AWS allows you to experiment and fail for very little cost."
The benefits of transforming with AWS
Explore five benefits that underpin the AWS service below:
As an AWS partner, reliability is a big one—as Amazon CTO Werner Vogels once said, "Everything fails all the time."
Features such as global data centres and comprehensive monitoring contribute to dependability. Further, users are given the tools to architect for infrastructure or service failures and pivot quickly into recovery mode, an essential capability of connected businesses.
"AWS has been around since 2006 and has an extremely long track record of providing reliable services and infrastructure around the globe."
Like your water or gas usage, AWS offers users a pay-as-you-go model optimising costs. Gone are the days of clunky (and costly) internal hardware and servers.
However, some discretion is recommended when selecting services, "Make sure you know why you're paying for it and that you’re using it the right way," says Rian.
"The scale of the AWS cloud is almost unfathomable, they work at a scale that most people can't even comprehend," shares Rian.
By nature of the AWS service itself, users have access to capabilities, resources, and reach incomprehensibly greater than anything that could be replicated in-house. This freedom allows businesses to scale IT infrastructure up or down depending on business needs and capabilities.
Thanks to a close working relationship with AWS and an intimate knowledge of the AWS approach to security, Rian shared that security is paramount at AWS, "security is everything to them, absolutely everything—nothing happens in that organisation without a security lens being passed over it. They're the leaders in how to do things securely in the cloud."
AWS works with a shared security model—meaning they are responsible for the security of the cloud, and you are responsible for security in the cloud.
With an already massive head start in features such as advanced encryption and identity controls, AWS users can invest in and leverage tools to enhance security and build upon an impressive base layer of AWS security.
AWS innovation means users benefit from these advancements downstream while enjoying the freedom to deploy, manage and scale applications and infrastructure with this cutting-edge technology.
"AWS has led from a service and platform perspective, but is also pioneering architectures and best practices, because they live on top of their own platform—that allows you to benefit from the collective whole and bring the experience of AWS into what you’re doing.”
The risks of cloud usage and how to minimise them
The risks of cloud usage stem from rushed adoption and a failure to accurately plan and configure with foresight, leading to a lack of foundation.
"While it's amazing that you can do things extremely quickly, you still need to do it in a measured way and understand the platform and your foundations. It's really important to have solid foundations of security and access control, monitoring and management," says Rian.
Failure to lay the AWS cloud foundation can lead to issues such as a big, unexpected bill, or security issues you might not know how to handle in-house.
The first way we help customers overcome this situation at Idea 11 is to deploy an AWS landing zone, which blends our expertise as an AWS partner with AWS native cloud services. We build a foundationally secure AWS environment with security guardrails and cost controls, freeing enterprises to develop and experiment in a de-risked environment.
The second way to minimise risk with ongoing maintenance is through managed cloud services like our TechOps team. We’ll come in and build your operating environment and establish a bespoke plan for ongoing and seamless operations based on our manage, monitor, support and report framework. Security is a top priority, so we can maintain continued vigilance over your systems and data.
"We're extremely good at operating these environments and making sure they adhere to best practices and security. It often makes a lot of sense to get someone to look after that for you—it means you can focus on what matters to your business, like new capabilities, developing new features, or servicing customers, and allow us to look after the platform with our AWS expertise."
AWS is a powerful tool, but it can get you in trouble if you don't know how to do it or haven't set the proper foundation for optimal usage.
Unlock the power of AWS with a trusted AWS partner
It's an exciting time to work with the AWS cloud and witness in real time just what these new features and cutting-edge tech are doing to transform Australian businesses. As an AWS partner for almost ten years, we've had the privilege of witnessing this shift in real time and leveraging the tech for our clients.
To learn more about how AWS can transform your business, reach out to the team today.