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AI transformation drives significant business value, as a recent study of over 2000 business leaders and decision-makers found: 

  • For every USD1 a company invests in AI, it realizes an average return of USD3.50.
  • Organizations realize a return on their AI investments within 14 months.
  • 92% of AI deployments take 12 months or less. 
  • 71% of respondents say their companies are already using AI.  

Clearly, we’re witnessing rapid expansion of AI wherein organizations globally are unlocking productivity within their businesses, but also bending the curve on innovation by building on an open AI platform and partner ecosystem. These organizations are engaging Microsoft experts to build differentiated, intelligent applications and modernize existing, business-critical applications. These intelligent applications use real-time and historical data to deliver personalized and adaptable digital experiences with meaningful outcomes, that close the gap between the user’s current state and the desired outcome. New or modernized, when built on Microsoft Azure, these applications benefit from one of the largest interconnected networks on the planet, high availability, and trusted security and compliance.  

Azure brings together capabilities for modern app development, cloud-scale data, and leading generative AI in one place. Customers see great value using these services together. In a recent Forrester Total Economic Impact of Microsoft Azure App Innovation report, customers were able to gain significant time savings of one to one and a half months when delivering new applications to the market, increase developer efficiency up to 25%, and reduce app downtime up to 25%. This leads to compelling business benefits such as beating competitors in the innovation race, capturing incremental revenue, minimizing lost revenue and fines from downtime, and increasing the engagement and retention of key talent.   

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ISV solutions help accelerate your AI transformation

While Azure provides the tools to build and modernize intelligent applications, it’s important to consider the broader tech stack. Independent Software Vendor (ISV) solutions complement Azure services by allowing you to meet specific use-case requirements, modernize existing tech stacks onto Azure, and mitigate the need to build new skillsets. If your organization routinely uses ISV solutions as part of the app infrastructure or development process, chances are that you can continue to use them even as you build new or modernize existing apps onto Azure. An example is apps built on Azure Spring Apps or Azure Red Hat OpenShift.  

1. Azure Spring Apps Enterprise

Azure Spring Apps Enterprise is a fully managed service for the Spring Framework, built in collaboration with VMware. Building upon the Spring Framework and incorporating features from VMware Tanzu, Azure Spring Apps Enterprise helps accelerate development with ready-made, enterprise-conformant templates. Azure Spring Apps Enterprise offers full integration into Azure’s ecosystem and services, including fully managed infrastructure, built-in app lifecycle management, and ease of monitoring for app development and modernization. If you have existing apps in the Spring Framework, you can efficiently modernize them onto Azure while managing costs and enhancing the apps with AI. Here’s how to get started: Migrate Spring Boot applications to Azure Spring Apps.  

2. Azure Red Hat OpenShift

Azure Red Hat OpenShift is a turnkey application platform. It is jointly engineered, operated, and supported by Red Hat and Microsoft. With Azure Red Hat OpenShift, you can deploy fully managed Red Hat OpenShift clusters without worrying about building and managing the infrastructure and get ready access to and integration with Azure tools, singular billing, integrated support and access to committed spend, and discount programs. This increases operational efficiency, time to value, and allows developers to refocus on innovation to quickly build, deploy, and scale applications. Get started through the Azure Red Hat OpenShift documentation.  

Microsoft also supports pure third-party solutions as part of its ISV ecosystem, to complement native Azure services. While these solutions meet a diverse set of use-cases, ranging from analytics to storage, here’s one that’s likely common to many app development or modernization projects—HashiCorp Terraform.

3. HashiCorp Terraform on Azure

An infrastructure as code tool for provisioning and managing cloud infrastructure, HashiCorp Terraform on Azure allows you to define infrastructure as code with declarative configuration files that can be used to create, manage, and update infrastructure. If your organization currently uses Terraform, developers can use their familiarity with the tool to deploy and manage Azure infrastructure using familiar and consistent syntax and tooling. To support this, HashiCorp offers a library of pre-built modules for Azure services, including Azure AI, Azure Kubernetes Service, and Azure Cosmos DB. And as your developers build new modules, perhaps with GitHub Copilot, those modules can be templatized using HashiCorp Terraform for reuse within your organization, setting up your developer teams for greater productivity and velocity. To get you started, read the blog “Empowering AI: Building and Deploying Azure AI Landing Zones with Terraform.”  

Build and modernize apps with Azure and our partner ecosystem

So, as you look through your app infrastructure and decide to modernize your existing apps, any Spring apps or Red Hat OpenShift apps can easily be moved to Azure, with HashiCorp Terraform on Azure to assist. While we have only looked at three solutions in this blog, your preferred vendors are likely part of the Azure ISV ecosystem. Microsoft’s ecosystem of partners also includes partners that specialize in offering services to build custom intelligent apps, with industry-specific experience.

Connect with experts from Azure who will be able to guide you on your app architecture that utilizes the appropriate technology and services— Microsoft or partner—for your needs.

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