Following the the success of VMware vCloud Air since its launch in February, we caught up with Kevin Turnbull, Head of IT at Bluefin Solutions, to hear his experiences of trialling the solution in the UK and the benefits he foresees for Bluefin.
We’re a global management consultancy, HQ’d in London, which specialises in SAP implementations. Each month, we can be managing up to 100 SAP servers. A crucial part of these projects is the test and development phase, a process which – until now – we have been running in Amazon Web Services (AWS). Building them here was not a problem, but once we have completed the test and development stage, there is no way of moving the SAP systems back on-premises. Instead, we have to entirely rebuild them, replicating days, weeks, or even months of work.
Obviously this makes no sense, but AWS gives us zero capability to export, so it essentially forced us into a slow and inefficient way of working.
We’d been looking for a solution for several years which could give us the ability to move data and applications between the private and public cloud with minimal effort and no complications, but there was nothing on the market which was suitable.
An answer to our prayers!
VMware’s partner Softcat then introduced us to VMware vCloud Air (previously VMware vCloud Hybrid Service), claiming it would enable us to move data between private and public cloud environments completely seamlessly, using our existing tools and processes. It sounded too good to be true, but the process of signing up to the beta trial was very straightforward and we were offered dedicated support from VMware’s sales team.
We had a VMware environment fully setup and integrated with the beta vCloud Air in just two days. Setting up the equivalent with Amazon Web Services could have taken weeks. The best bit was that the vCloud Air interface is the same as our existing VMware software, so the team knew how to work with the solution straight away.
We started the testing phase immediately, creating an image in the cloud and moving it back to our on-premises VMware environment. This was truly straight forward and simply a case of hitting the right click button and ‘copy’. I had never seen functionality like this and it just knocked Amazon Web Services straight out of the park. There is absolutely no comparison.
Once we are signed up to the full service, we won’t need to rely on SAP consultants to help us rebuild the applications on-premises. This will enable us to complete our SAP demo and proof of concept projects for our customers in days rather than weeks, while also freeing up consultants to work on other projects. We’ll also be able to demo CRM or warehouse systems with mobile capabilities quickly– something which more and more of our customers are now asking for.
As a technology company ourselves, we want to be at the forefront of new technologies and VMware vCloud Air will allow us to achieve this level of innovation. I can now create a full hybrid cloud model based on a technology I know and trust, in support of enterprise workloads such as SAP.