Not very long ago I worked for higher education (HE) in United Kingdom as a member of backed team developing and implementing core services.
This gave me a lot of insight in Higher Education sector, often referred as quite ‘closed market’.
Please note that currently I work for VMware but opinions are my own.
I agree that when it comes to making a choice for any bigger deals, first question on everyone’s lips is: “Have you got any higher education references?” – therefore any new technologies e.g. Cloud services are slower to adopt even now, when cloud reached it’s potential and gained maturity.
I felt like the word “Cloud” is not very welcome concept in HE. This is because techy staff understands what it means and that typically the reason to go for cloud solution is not to about the cost but scalability. Higher education doesn’t necessarily require to scale up and down. I have seen and heard about IT Directors attending sales meetings and making decisions onto their respective IT leading to outsourcing their services to the cloud and “save money” – That’s often irrational, when millions were already invested in local data centres.
Until recently AWS was possible option for HE, but from what I have experienced not many HE customers use their services. as it would require training for staff on how to use it. Moreover there were concerns on where the data resides, and in my example, NHS data could not be replicated outside of United Kingdom boundaries.
And now comes the real deal – VMware vCloud Air.
It doesn’t require any training for HE staff where VMware is already well adopted.
Data doesn’t leave geographical borders, which provides great compliance.
Simply extends the data centre to provide extra compute resources to accommodate projects / additional workloads without continues investment on premises , it also allows for billing departments/faculties and maintaining overall control over the environment, yet again without additional training needed. No need to dynamically scale up and down, just treat it as additional resource down the road.
Feels to me like it’s a no brainer for HE to go for vCloud Air as their first steps into the cloud. I’d certainly recommend it to my former colleagues and anyone from Higher Education.
Please feel free to contact me for any further information about VMware vCloud Air.