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How Infrastructure as Code is Accelerating Cloud Adoption, with HashiCorp VP of Engineering, Preeti Somal

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The journey to cloud is not the same for everyone. In fact, for some, it can be a grueling and daunting process. For CIOs and CTOs of century-year-old companies, they are burdened by server after server piling up and as they tackle the obstacle of migrating data to the cloud. Meanwhile, peers at digitally-native companies, born in the cloud, use their agility and ease of scale to soar past their old-school brethren. So what’s a legacy company to do?

“The reality in the environment is that there are all stages of software in these companies and disentangling that and figuring out how to move to the cloud is a journey. And that’s the thing where we’re really excited about being able to help with at least kind of taking care of the infrastructure pieces. So CIOs and CTOs can focus on the application layers and not really have to worry about how the infrastructure gets operated.” 

That’s Preeti Somal, Vice President of Engineering at HashiCorp, a company constructed on the idea of building open-source communities to help users quickly implement the infrastructure necessary to run cloud applications. On this episode of IT Visionaries, Preeti unpacks how open-source tools are helping customers get to the cloud faster, how hybrid cloud models have evolved over the years, and more. 

Main Takeaways

  • All Shapes and Sizes: There is not a one-size-fits-all method for companies trying to move to the cloud, but cloud adoption has been driven by organizations prioritizing the ability to quickly add applications and implement them within their network.
  • Building a Secure Environment: The shift to operating in the cloud requires a different approach to security. Instead of focusing on a secure network perimeter with the assumption of trust, you must shift your focus to securing the infrastructure and application services themselves through a trusted source of identity management
  • Building a Remote-First Team: When you’re building a remote-first team, you have to be intentional about how you document your process so when you scale, your team members will have a complete understanding of the workflow.

 

For a more in-depth look at this episode, check out the article below.


Article

The journey to cloud is not the same for everyone. In fact, for some, it can be a grueling and daunting process. For CIOs and CTOs of century-year-old companies, they are burdened by server after server piling up and as they tackle the obstacle of migrating data to the cloud. Meanwhile, peers at digitally-native companies, born in the cloud, use their agility and ease of scale to soar past their old-school brethren. So what’s a legacy company to do?

“The reality in the environment is that there are all stages of software in these companies and disentangling that and figuring out how to move to the cloud is a journey. And that’s the thing where we’re really excited about being able to help with at least kind of taking care of the infrastructure pieces. So CIOs and CTOs can focus on the application layers and not really have to worry about how the infrastructure gets operated.”

That’s Preeti Somal, Vice President of Engineering at HashiCorp, a company constructed on the idea of building open-source communities to help users quickly implement the infrastructure necessary to run cloud applications. On this episode of IT Visionaries, Preeti unpacks how open-source tools are helping customers get to the cloud faster, how hybrid cloud models have evolved over the years, and more. 

From hobbyists to enterprise companies, HashiCorp has been a pioneer in the development operation space, focusing on helping ease the journey to the cloud for its customers.

“Digital transformation is top of mind and it really upends the way that applications are being built because you no longer have the traditional data centers,” Somal said. “Our product suite essentially helps customers [complete] that journey.”

Open-source applications refer to programs or sources that are made accessible for consumers to then download through a general network. Those same applications can then be adopted to help companies operate at a more efficient pace.

“It’s a virtuous cycle of enabling DevOps to become stronger, become easier,” Somal said. “Faster, more agility, and ultimately being able to focus on the business problems that they want to solve without having to build a lot of tooling around the infrastructure pieces that enable them to write those business applications.”

That cycle is built around helping users develop workflows that allow for easy collaboration and implementation across multiple cloud systems.

“Our intention was to enable that workflow to be really smooth, seamless, and also multi-cloud,” Somal said. “Developers and companies are looking at not just AWS, but Azure GCP and multi-cloud environments. Along the way, we realized our customers and our community brought forward more and more use cases around cloud costs and having a central place where you can go into and see all the workspaces and all the infrastructure that you provisioned. Being able to estimate what that’s going to cost you, that’s been an interesting area that we’ve started building a lot of capabilities around.”

The other area the Somal has spent a lot of time and energy focusing on is security and making sure that applications and code that users pull from remain secure. One of the areas of concern that Somal has is keeping users that use multiple clouds protected as they use their tools between clouds.

“We think about security as something that is inherently part of our engineering and development process,” she said. “But we are also putting a lot of effort into delivering our products as cloud services. The level of responsibility that customers place on our shoulders with using our products — not just the products they download, but the services that we are bringing to market — we take that trust really seriously. And so security is front and center for us as we’re building the products and in how our product features enable customers to build in a secure manner.” 

To hear more about how HashiCorp is developing a community around open-source code, check out the full episode of IT Visionaries!

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Episode 264