Optus Business revamps cloud strategy

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Thursday, 28 May, 2015

Optus Business revamps cloud strategy

Optus Business has unveiled a new cloud strategy aimed at becoming the partner of choice for Australian businesses pursuing flexible cloud deployments.

As part of the strategy, the company has expanded its partnership with Microsoft to enable it to advise, transform and manage enterprises’ cloud deployments over Microsoft environments.

Optus has accordingly launched Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute, a private, high-speed, low-latency fibre connection to the Azure cloud platform.

In April, Optus became Microsoft’s first Australian network service provider partner for the Microsoft Cloud OS network. The latest collaboration builds on this alliance.

Optus said it has also strengthened the flexibility of its network to meet demand for services to address the movement of workloads across different cloud platforms.

The company will offer its customers a secure managed link to Amazon Web Services that will eliminate the requirement to connect over the internet. Optus will also use subsidiary Uecomm’s shared fibre network to allow customers to move data between major data centres in NSW and Victoria and between their customer sites.

In addition, Optus plans to leverage its partnership with Cisco to fulfil its new strategy. In March, Optus revealed it has been accepted as a member of the Cisco Intercloud Provider network, an initiative to improve the ability to manage data and processes across multiple cloud platforms.

“Optus’s cloud offering is uniquely agile and flexible, to meet the complex and changing needs of customers. Optus orchestrates and optimises workloads, wherever and whenever customers need it,” Optus Business Managing Director John Paitaridis said.

“The significance of the Optus cloud program is that we are bringing to market a range of ICT products and services that, on the back of our extensive network capabilities locally and regionally, offer our customers a single service provider across the complete technology stack.”

He said the new cloud strategy involves a realignment of the company’s approach to investment, partnerships, innovation and strategy towards enabling Australian businesses wanting greater flexibility in their cloud deployments.

“Optus is making it easier for businesses to innovate, unencumbered by the complexity of legacy technology. We can now navigate customers across on-premise, private, hybrid and public cloud, removing the complexity of cloud for customers through our managed capability and expertise.”

Australian businesses unprepared for change

Optus’s push to become more of a business enabler with its new cloud strategy may be motivated in part by recent research published by the company showing that the majority of Australian businesses are not in a good position to manage change.

The report shows that only 23% of Australian businesses can be considered “highly ready” for change, when measured by indicators including flexibility, agility, openness and an ability to collaborate.

Yet 85% of senior Australian business decision-makers feel confident or highly confident in their organisation’s readiness for change, suggesting there is a gap between their perception of change readiness and the reality.

Nearly 60% of highly change-ready businesses are outperforming their competitors, compared to just 32% of less change-ready businesses. They are also more than twice as likely to have exceeded growth targets over the past two years.

The vast majority (93%) of change-ready leaders believe that technology has a positive impact on their organisation and see restrictive legacy systems as a barrier to change as opposed to agile technology such as the cloud.

“Today, effectively every business is a technology organisation. Becoming more change ready requires business leaders to support the adoption of agile technology across every facet of their business - from processes and systems, products and services and people,” Paitaridis said.

“By adopting collaborative and flexible as-a-service tools, and shifting the focus from cost reduction to a compelling, business-wide strategy, businesses will be able to not just weather future changes, but to use them to their competitive advantage.”

Image courtesy of Alpha under CC

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