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The Need for Software-Defined Data Centers in the Cloud

This blog post is an excerpt from our recent GovLoop Academy course, created in partnership with VMWare and AWS, How to Innovate in Federal Government. To access the full course, head here.

Federal government agencies are attempting to modernize their IT environments and systems to meet the new demands of today. Citizens expect more streamlined, intuitive digital services that compare to their experiences with the private sector. Federal employees want mobile options and advanced applications to help them do their jobs easier, from more locations. And IT personnel have to manage all these new systems and tools in an increasingly complex and resource-intensive IT environment. Even as they cope with managing outdated and legacy IT systems that litter government infrastructures.

In short, federal agencies must innovate the way they leverage IT to keep pace with the demands of today. To do that, many agencies have turned away from traditional IT models to embrace software-defined data centers.

A software-defined data center, or SDDC, is a data storage facility in which all infrastructure elements — networking, storage, compute and security — are virtualized and delivered as a service.

SDDCs address many of the challenges associated with traditional IT management by virtualizing and allocating resources as a service. SDDCs are also automated and managed by intelligent, policy-based management software, which simplifies governance and operations.

But as agencies adopt SDDCs – specifically when they adopt cloud as a way to increase the flexibility and agility of their IT systems – they run into other management challenges.

When an organization pursues cloud environments that don’t match their on-premise investments, they can’t leverage their existing IT skillsets and tools, nor can they use established on-premise governance, security and operational policies. More importantly, agencies lose the flexibility benefits that cloud promises.

To make the most of data center investments while also reaping the rewards of cloud, agencies must consider compatible solutions such as VMware’s SDDC on Amazon Web Services (or AWS).

By placing their existing solutions in a partner’s hybrid cloud, agencies can migrate their on-premise workloads to the cloud with ease, while also consolidating and extending their data center capacities.

There are many other significant benefits when agencies select partnered cloud and data center solutions. We’ll cover those in the full course.

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