Managing the Cloud with AI

by Sheila Mulholland
July 25, 2023

By the time a human manages to warn you about a risk to your company’s cloud program, it’s often far too late to do much more than tally up damages and regroup. Whether you’ve just been told that your cloud infrastructure is starting to fail, that your company’s cloud migration project is months behind schedule, or been handed an eye-watering seven-figure cloud services bill, it’s clear that “human speed” is no match for cloud’s capabilities. To properly manage company cloud initiatives with increased speed, adaptability, and detail, leaders now leverage artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies, hoping to fill in the gaps that legacy (human) processes don’t or can’t address. 

Any heavily automated process tends to shine when properly complemented with AI integrations. AI allows you to smartly automate certain very intensive tasks, freeing up more of the workforce to move from focusing on grunt work to functioning in a more strategic capacity. When combined with the cloud’s considerable improvements to workload efficiency and scalability, AI-derived automation allows IT teams to spend more of their time generating organizational and business value, and less time babysitting basic-but-intensive processes.  

AI to Strengthen Network Infrastructure 

Recently Accenture partnered with a leading Asian energy services company, with the goal of helping to improve the company’s existing fraud response systems. From the outset, it was quite clear that sole reliance on human-centric processes was no longer sufficient to properly monitor the network comprising over 600 hosts, 3000 networked devices, and 1500 Internet of Things (IoT) enabled devices deployed across some 700 physical retail locations. Accenture rose to the challenge, of designing and implementing a new system based on its own AI-enabled process automation platform, myWizard, to radically transform the company’s cloud and networking landscape. Equipped with brand-new self-healing functionality, and by letting AI do the heavy lifting of both monitoring infrastructure and handling scheduling/notifications, the collaboration was a resounding success. Since the collaboration began, fraud monitoring efforts now run 24/7/365, and fraud service response coverage alone has improved by ~80%. 

[RELATED: Artificial intelligence needs human judgment to work.] 

AI to Master Cloud Migrations 

Another large slice of “life in the cloud,” as it were, involves cloud migrations. Often lengthy and technically challenging to navigate, even the most well-planned migration can morph into a costly, off-track, migraine-inducing mess – and for some companies, that’s enough to stall their cloud journey altogether.  

No matter the company size or industry, cloud migration challenges tend to crop up. CloudEQ, a cloud consultancy firm concerned with empowering digital transformation through well-managed cloud migration, discovered this when partnering with multi-cloud management AIOps platform vendor Virtana to tackle a global fast-food retailer’s impending, massive cloud migration effort. Workloads in North America had been migrated previously and were already operational, but those processes had taken too much time to repeat — and with the rest of the globe still very much on the “to-do” list, the chain knew it was time for experts to step in. 

It was a good call. As Sean Barker, CEO