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Introduction to Webb's Stores and the Need for Cloud Computing

Webb’s Stores is a successful regional retailer that operates stores in Australia and also in New Zealand. Webb’s sell a range of food stuffs as well as some speciality items. The company has two main data centres, one located in Sydney and the other in Melbourne. It also has a number of regional data centres located in Wagga, Bathurst, Port Macquarie, Brisbane and Auckland in New Zealand.

Webb’s Stores has engaged you as a consultant to advise them on the use of Cloud Computing in their daily operations. They have some 600 sales staff that work in their stores and 200 staff that work in their two main warehouses in Sydney and Melbourne. Webb’s have been facing increasing issues with application and operational complexity and the management of their data. They have been advised that a move to using a Cloud based infrastructure would be an advantage to them.

Webb’s has recently taken over a group of small independent grocery retailers in regional Victoria. They need to integrate this new retailer into their operations as soon as possible.

The Board of Directors of Webb’s has decided that they will use this new regional group of stores to test their strategy of using the Cloud to better integrate their operations.Your task is to:

1. Prepare a PowerPoint briefing for the Directors of Webb’s Stores. Your briefing should:

a. Describe the key concepts of Cloud Computing and why do you think that a move to the cloud will benefit Webb’s Store.
b. Explain how Webb’s could use either AWS or Azure to integrate their new regional group of stores into their existing operations. 
c. Explain which cloud architectures you could use to integrate these operations and the reasons for their use.
d. Each slide in the briefing must also include speaking notes in the notes section to explain the slide, and all images used in the briefing should be referenced. 

2. The Board of Webb’s is considering moving to a SaaS model for providing email and office automation services (this includes mainly word processing, spreadsheets and presentation software such as PowerPoint). There are a number of providers of these services that are now available and you are asked to recommend one of these services to Webb’s. You are to prepare a PowerPoint briefing for the Directors that includes:

a. The advantages that Webb’s can achieve if they use this type of SaaS service,
b. The disadvantages that Webb’s will face from using this type of service,
c. The SaaS service that you would recommend, including:

i. The name of the service
ii. How it is better than other similar services?
iii. What are its specific disadvantages?

3. Webb’s Stores has data centres in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane that run MS SQL Server 2012 R2 databases. These databases form the operational core of Webb’s. These data centres are linked by a fibre based WAN and data is replicated between the data centres daily. The 3 data centres each run x86 based servers attached to a HPE 3PAR SAN with 1PB of storage. The databases in each data centre are stored on the SAN. There is a copy of this database at the Auckland data centre, but they are having issues replicating data to Auckland because of latency and other issues. Webb’s is now considering moving its databases into the cloud to resolve this issue. But they are unsure of the issues that are involved with this migration. You are to write a report for the Webb’s board that:

a. Describes the differences between using:

i. An IaaS approach to migrating Webb’s database to the cloud, and
ii. A PaaS approach to migrating Webb’s database to the cloud.
iii. Create a table that shows the advantages and disadvantages of each approach,
iv. What is the approach that you would recommend and give your reasons for recommending this approach.

Introduction to Webb's Stores and the Need for Cloud Computing

The Webb’s store is looking forward to synchronise their business activities by managing data centre of the offices which are geographically apart. The organization has decided to develop the cloud platform for carrying out their working activities. They are facing complexity in managing the activities performed by their large number of employees placed at two different offices.

The Webb’s store wants to change their working tactics to resolve the complexity associated with the management of employees and their activities who are geographically apart and placed in different offices. The implementation of the cloud services in the working curriculum of the enterprise is advantageous because it helps in resolving the issues related with uncertainty. The activities of the employees who are geographical apart can be synchronized with ease. It provides compatibility in fetching information from the data centre of different offices. The good and healthy relationship can be developed with the supplier by analysing the market need which in turn increases the profit of the enterprise.

The food and grocery regional office can be integrated with the with the existing business operations with the use of AWS services. The inclusion of amazon web services plays a vital role in reducing the cost associated in performing operation on different sites by integrating the services together on the single infrastructure. It helps in developing automatic portal for managing request of resources, security to the data, management of the backup data and services, monitoring of the future requirement, and others. The agility of the Webb’s store can be improved with the management of AWS services by developing the preferred infrastructure for the enterprise.

The Software As A service model is the best suitable model for the enterprise because it is looking forward for a service which is capable of managing the data centre of the geographically apart offices and integrating the activities of food and grocery regional office with the existing business operations. The reason for choosing the SAAS architecture because it is capable of providing privacy and security to the data which is going to be transmitted between different participating units, it is capable of developing disaster recovery plan, and works on managing the service level agreement for providing smooth and efficient working atmosphere for the flow of activities between the geographically apart offices on the single platform (Hoessini, 2015). The services which are provided by the SAAS cloud computing model are categorised as E-mail, collaboration between different offices, deployment of the Instant messaging system, and preparation of online documentation. The following diagram gives the clear idea about the SaaS services for the Webb’s store:

Benefits of Cloud Computing for Business Operations at Webb’s Stores

                                                         

The best suitable service for the Webb’s store is the management of the intranet team sites for the working employees. It helps in providing share point sites for the working employees to maintain the customised security setting for their business operations. The focus should be given development of the interactive business intelligence system for retrieving the data from multiple data centre and managing it on the single dashboard.

  • It helps in providing resources on demand to the working employees
  • The cost spent on managing the resource on different offices is reduced
  • The scaling of the business operations can be optimized by integrating the services of the new food regional office with the existing operational platform.
  • It helps in upgrading the system according to the changing demand of the top executives for adding more business operations and activities within the working culture of the enterprise (Binz, 2015).
  • No extra training and development program needed for the employees for using it.
  • Retrieving the data from multiple data centre
  • Development of the interactive business intelligence system
  • Maintain the customised security setting for their business operations (Varia, 2010).
  • Security is the major concern for the SAAS model
  • The sensitivity of the information can be damaged with the inclusion of hackers for hacking the information available on the cloud.
  • The regulatory compliances are not properly implemented in the SaaS architecture.
  • The performance of the business activities can be affected due to the failure of the internet connection (Rao, 2013)

The best suitable service for the Webb’s store is the management of the intranet team sites for the working employees. It is better from the other services because it works perfectly with the requirement of the Webb’s store. It is capable of managing activities between the participating team members. The disadvantage of using this service is that it is difficult to develop a business intelligence system for retrieving the data from multiple data centre and managing it on the single dashboard.

The traffic analysis and management is efficiently done on the IAAS model for retrieving the information from different databases at a time (Jaiswal, 2014). The tracking of the activities can be efficiently done. No extra cost is incurred on setting the databases on the IAAS platform. The implementation of AWS services can be effectively managed on the this platform

The migration of database of Webb’s store on PAAS model helps in managing big data of the enterprise efficiently with the facility of scaling the availability of data resources (Sharman, 2014). The Hadoop can be efficiently installed on the PAAS platform which helps in managing the big data of the enterprise (Ashraf, 2014).

Model

Advantages

Disadvantages

IAAS

No extra cost is incurred on migrating the databases to the IAAS platform

The expansion of the business activities can be efficiently done

The activities can be strategically handled

Accessing of the data can be done from anywhere and at any time.

The privacy of the data can be damaged

The latency time of some of the operation can increased

PAAS

It is efficient in managing customer relationship

Helps in adding financial security

Flow of work can efficiently managed

Lock in the major challenge for the PAAS platform

Portability of the existing application

It is recommended that the existing business databases should be transformed on the PAAS platform because it is capable of managing the big data of the enterprise with the use of Hadoop file management system.

References:

Ashraf, I. (2014). An overview of the service model of the cloud computing. Retrieved from https://ijmcr.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Paper18779-783.pdf

Binz, T. (2015). How to adapt application to the cloud environment. Retrieved from https://www.iaas.uni-stuttgart.de/RUS-data/ART-2013-08%20-%20How%20to%20Adapt%20Applications%20for%20the%20Cloud%20Environment.pdf

Hoessini, A. (2015). Cloud migration a case study of migrating an enterprise IT system to IAAS. Retrieved from https://www.iaas.uni-stuttgart.de/RUS-data/ART-2013-08%20-%20How%20to%20Adapt%20Applications%20for%20the%20Cloud%20Environment.pdf

Jaiswal, P. (2014). Infrastructure as a service: Security issues in cloud computing. Retrieved from https://ijcsmc.com/docs/papers/March2014/V3I3201499a38.pdf

Rao, C. (2013). Cloud computing services and deployment model. Retrieved from https://www.ijecs.in/issue/v2-i12/8%20ijecs.pdf

Sharma, C. (2014). Analogous study of security issues and challenges in cloud environment. Retrieved from https://www.ijarcsms.com/docs/paper/volume2/issue5/V2I5-0078.pdf

Varia, J. (2010). Migrating your existing application to the AWS cloud. Retrieved from https://www.ijecs.in/issue/v2-i12/8%20ijecs.pdf

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