Enterprise Cloud

Create a Hybrid Infrastructure Tailored to Your Digital Needs

Infrastructure modernization is clearly moving toward the public cloud, but with the complexity of legacy IT and the rapidly evolving vendor ecosystem, a lot of analysis must go into where and how to deploy workloads, and equally important, how to operate the resulting environment more intelligently. If you’re like most enterprises, you’ll seek an optimal mix of on- and off-premises infrastructure – what AHEAD calls an Enterprise Cloud.

Public Cloud Solutions

The benefits of cloud are widely accepted, but achieving those benefits isn’t as easy as swiping a credit card. Whether it’s blind spots in areas of costs and inventory, or configuration missteps due to inexperienced teams, or surprises at the amount of tooling and automation required, the move to the cloud is complex.

We provide a full complement of services, including lifecycle services like strategy, foundational design, and application assessment and migration; as well as support for continuous activities like optimization, education, prioritization, and cloud governance and security.

AHEAD’s Public Cloud Services

Cloud Strategy and Roadmap

Establish your guiding objectives, strategy, and roadmap for the public cloud. Envision what your environment will look like in order to map use cases, services, and cost back to business outcomes. Based on a portfolio analysis, we will help you build an agile approach to successfully leveraging the public cloud.

How Do You Evolve?

Foundation Design

Don’t consider the public cloud as an end state, but rather as a new way of operating. So, we created our Public Cloud Operating Model to help clients oversee where apps run, where data lives, and how services get consumed. These 12 pillars are essential to making your public cloud enterprise-ready.

AHEAD Public Cloud Operating Model

We use this framework with clients to configure the initial infrastructure foundation, then plan migration of initial workloads, including reviews of application candidacy, migration alternatives, and team structures.

Deployment and Migration Factory

Conduct a detailed application discovery and assessment to determine where to move your apps and by which method. Our migration approach is designed for scale in order to maximize efficiency. This approach standardizes migration across your targeted apps and includes testing and validation, cutover procedures, and ongoing operations and measurement.

Migration Methodology

Day 2 Operations

Rely on AHEAD’s CoPilot platform to improve the predictability, security, and responsiveness of your public cloud environment.

We combine state-of-the-art tools for monitoring your inventory, costs, security, and compliance with our expert guidance, benchmarks, and remediation support to help you minimize unforeseen expenses and security risks. Read more

Optimize Your AWS Cloud While Clearing the Hurdles of Security and Cost

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Cloud Management Platforms

For an enterprise with a heavy private cloud emphasis, the right CMP can transform your VM provisioning, reducing a potentially weeks-long manual process to an automated one that finishes in a matter of minutes. AHEAD is a leading, award-winning partner of VMware

And if you run one or more public clouds, the right CMP can help you take better control of your cloud services, manage your cloud spending, and architect your app platforms to run seamlessly in the cloud.

Find a Cloud Management Platform That Fits Your Enterprise Cloud Needs.

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AWS and Azure Qualifications

We’re not locked into just one specific cloud platform. We maintain deep expertise in both AWS and Azure, reflecting the needs of most enterprise organizations. Below are some of our qualifications and educational offerings across both platforms.

AWSAzure
Premier Consulting PartnerGold Cloud Platform Competency
DevOps Competency Status40+ specialists and 25+ certifications
Storage Competency StatusIP CoSell Ready Solution Offerings
70+ specialists and 30+ certifications
VMC on AWS Beta / Launch Partner
AWS Education ServicesAzure Education Services
Cloud Formation Overview
Azure Networking
VPC Network Peering
Azure Compute – Virtual Machines
Operations: EC2 Systems Manager
Azure Storage Services / Blob Storage
Security / Automated Remediation
Azure Monitoring and Operations
Automation / Cloud Formation TemplatesApplication Scaling / Automating On Demand

Across both AWS and Azure, AHEAD frequently delivers the following use cases to clients:

  • Environment Validation and Optimization
  • Application Assessment and Rationalization
  • On-premises to Cloud Connectivity
  • Cloud Automation and Management

VMware Cloud on AWS

As a premier partner of VMware and early adopter of VMware Cloud on AWS (VMC), AHEAD has the expertise to apply our foundational design, deployment, and migration methodologies to your existing VMware environment.

VMC Environment Analysis and Readiness Service

  • Prepare and validate your environment for vSphere 6.5 and VMC integration.
  • Create and execute a holistic vSphere 6.5 upgrade plan to enable future use of Hybrid Linked Mode to move workloads between on-premises and VMC.
  • Design and implement VMware Site Recovery to enable automated disaster recovery to VMC.

VMC Application Discovery Framework

  • Discover and map applications with an understanding of application dependencies, a critical component of a successful cloud migration.
  • Acquire a complete understanding of the application environment as an input for a comprehensive cloud strategy to build migration waves and plan for a successful cloud migration or hybrid design (ex. DRaaS).

VMC Design and Deploy

  • Architect and size your VMC environment based on application needs, providing a planned roadmap for future growth based on application roadmap.
  • Design and deploy your VMC environment, extending your on-premises infrastructure while enabling consumption of native cloud services.

VMC Hybrid Cloud Design and Deploy

  • Leverage NSX and vRealize Network Insight to span networks.
  • Centralize security policies to support cross-vCenter and long-distance vMotion.
  • Accelerate the deployment of application stacks by orchestrating delivery of network and security services through integration of NSX with vRealize Automation.
  • Implement highly available connectivity between VMC and on-premises vSphere environments by designing optimal underlays for NSX that combine well-architected AWS VPC designs with DirectConnect transports from providers.
  • Plan for VMC Integration with native AWS services like S3; Elastic File System; Elastic Load Balancing.

VMC Migration Services

  • Use application assessments and programmatic migration frameworks to create migration waves, migration windows, and technical and executive reporting to move workloads between on-premises datacenter, colocation facility, and VMC.

VMC Foundational Design and Deployment

  • Build from programmatic framework to consult, design, and deploy AWS Foundational Cloud solution.
  • Include education, customer and application specific design, and deployment of AWS Cloud infrastructure, and operations framework

VMC Cloud Automation Services

  • Improve quality and consistency of services as well as speed of service delivery in key areas of automation, orchestration, and configuration management.
  • Integrate VMC as a logical endpoint for cloud self-service, as part of AHEAD’s automation service, using VMware vRealize Automation and Orchestrator.
  • Implement CMDB / ITSM / ITIL processes using VMware vRealize Automation and Orchestrator, ensuring continued visibility, control, and security of your environment.

This Year, AHEAD Was Awarded VMware Partner of the Year in the Category of Professional Services for the Americas

Data Center Solutions

The data center is dead. Long live the data center. On-premises infrastructure will continue to play a critical role in the overall transformation of IT and digitization of businesses.

AHEAD combines the latest capabilities in virtualization, containerization, and hyper / converged infrastructure to bring cloud-like capabilities to your data center—while managing the critical touch points with the rest of your enterprise cloud.

Do you have a data center strategy?

Many organizations do not. For those companies where the data center continues to play a prominent role – AHEAD helps them simplify operations, handle compute and storage refreshes more holistically, use software licensing strategies that can save money and fund innovation, and help them break down a function that is still to this day, often siloed around technologies.

Harvest to Invest

Draw down technical debt and free up resources for innovation.

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Enterprise Licensing Strategies

Draw down your technical debt and free up resources for innovation. AHEAD can help apply enterprise or transformational license agreements for storage, virtualization, backup, and even network security. The process begins with an infrastructure assessment where we create full visibility into your committed maintenance and support costs, then come up with ways to reduce those costs – often dramatically – through better licensing agreements.

How Enterprise License Agreements Can Create Financial Clarity

Don’t be blindsided by your next maintenance bill.  Download our eBook on ELAs and watch the webinar.

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Compute and Virtualization

Modern applications and workloads require a great deal of computation. And many enterprises are still trying to address where to run new workloads and applications, and whether existing applications can even be re-factored to take advantage of the public cloud.

As one of the most recognized and advanced players in the VMware ecosystem, virtualization is in our DNA. We’re now we’re helping organizations fit VMware into an overall cloud strategy, and navigate VMware on AWS.

Planning Your vSphere 6.5 Upgrade

Download our Upgrade Planner and watch the Webinar.

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Containers and Serverless

Containers package up applications in file systems in order to isolate them from the underlying operating system. We help clients enable application portability through encapsulation and container management.

Serverless computing reduces the amount of overhead associated with developing applications in the public cloud. We help clients build applications and services in a faster, more agile way, leveraging infrastructure managed by cloud providers like AWS and Azure.

Data Protection and Availability

Enterprises are dealing with a lot more data, from a lot more data sources.  Never before has data protection been more paramount. New threats, new compliance requirements, and new applications coming online – not to mention the drive to the cloud –  all result in new data protection requirements.

With our broad and deep experience in the data center, and cross-OEM experience, AHEAD is well positioned to help with your data protection, availability, and compliance needs.

End User Computing

Mobile technology continues to change how and where users work and collaborate. We help clients enable workforce mobility by providing their end users access to data and applications from any device.

AHEADstart for Amazon WorkSpaces

View our jumpstart consulting offer for Amazon WorkSpaces.

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Hyper / Converged Infrastructure

Does your team efficiently handle infrastructure patching and management? How long does it take to migrate from old to new infrastructure after a large purchase?  Clients express to us their frustration of infrastructure management, and issues of unplanned downtime, inability to patch systems in a timely manner, or security breaches.  

HCI and CI make it easier to support enterprise applications because they’re built to simplify overall management while running complex workloads. We help clients deploy integrated compute, storage, networking, and virtualization to increase agility, and realize operational efficiency, and ultimately achieve “single pane of glass management.”

AHEAD offers a breadth of expertise with H/CI, including instances VxRail and VxRack, Nutanix, and Hyperflex available in the AHEAD Labs for use in testing and training.

Straight Talk About Hyper-Converged Infrastructure

Is HCI Right for You? There’s a lot of buzz around hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) solutions. To get the most value from them, you’ll need to cut through the noise. Is HCI really a good fit for your needs? And if so, what’s the simplest way to implement it?

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Networking and Network Security

Enterprises seek scalable, secure and resilient connectivity between users, infrastructure, and applications, leveraging a combination of software-defined and physical network approaches. With AHEAD’s experience in automation, orchestration, and infrastructure-as-code, we help clients pursue the software defined data center. Our networking practice helps:

Wrongly-sized or poorly performing connectivity to the cloud can be costly, and can undermine the success of the public cloud.   We have expertise in extending enterprise networking to the cloud.

Storage

The rise of Everything-as-a-Service, Internet of Things, and unstructured data is driving parabolic growth in digital data, and fueling investment in robust, flexible, and performant storage infrastructure.

AHEAD storage solutions help clients build out resilient, performant, and cost-efficient tiers of storage capacity across on-premises and the public cloud. Bridging the gap between public cloud and existing data assets are especially critical for success today.

Client Results

  • Implemented converged infrastructure solution to increase network uptime from 87% to 100%
    for a large academic medical center.
  • Reduced backup and recovery times from 29 hours to less than eight hours for a premier Midwest healthcare provider.
  • Designed and deployed a greenfield “virtual first” environment in less than 60 days for a large
    mutual insurance company.
  • Consolidated 20,000 users worldwide onto a single file sharing and collaboration tool – Box – for a large mutual company.
  • Improved end-user response times by 600% down to 1ms for a premier Midwest healthcare provider.
  • Designed and deployed infrastructure in less than 60 days to support a secure virtual desktop
    environment with scalability up to 5,000 users for a large mutual insurance company.
  • Created a custom Amazon WorkSpaces chargeback solution using Lambda for a global financial and professional services firm.

Client Results

AHEAD has served more than 500 clients in building and managing their enterprise clouds. Read More

Client Cloud Roundtable

Panel discussion of two organizations’ cloud journeys, including lessons learned and what they are focusing on next

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amway_feature

Building a Better Infrastructure

Amway develops the proper framework for their growing business

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5 Questions to Ask Yourself

  1. Do you have plans to make major changes to your data center strategy?
  2. Do you build your own software and application stacks or are they off the shelf?
  3. Do you have an existing cloud footprint for anything more than experimentation?
  4. What challenges do you currently experience with infrastructure across capacity planning, deployment velocity, and data center hygiene?
  5. What obstacles currently prevent your company’s adoption of cloud?

Better Together

AHEAD partners with 60 technology providers, all geared toward optimizing the enterprise cloud.

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AHEAD is an AWS Premier Consulting partner, having attained the DevOps and Storage Competencies. The designation recognizes AHEAD as an AWS Partner Network (APN) member who delivers both technical proficiency and proven client success with AWS.

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Learn about WorkSpaces

AHEAD is a Gold Cloud Platform Competency partner with Microsoft Azure. To achieve this status, businesses must submit customer references that demonstrate successful projects, meet a performance commitment, and pass technology and sales assessments.

DELL EMC logo

Since its inception in 2007, AHEAD has been a key partner of DellEMC. We’re honored to have won the DellEMC Extraordinary Partner of the Year award in 2018.

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VMware logo

Since its inception, AHEAD has been a key partner of VMware. We’re honored to have won the Americas Partner Innovation Award in the category of Professional Services.

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nutanix-logo

AHEAD leverages Nutanix to bring cloud-like performance to your data center—while managing the critical touch points with the rest of your enterprise cloud.

AHEAD maintains deep competencies in all Cisco product lines, including networking and security. We earned the Cisco Advanced Security Architecture Specialization in 2017, and have formed an entire practice supporting Cisco’s AppDynamics platform.