10 min read
How the depth and breadth of the Microsoft Azure partner ecosystem enables thousands of organizations to bring their mission-critical applications to Azure.
In the past few years, IT organizations have been realizing compelling benefits when they transitioned their business-critical applications to the cloud, enabling them to address the top challenges they face with running the same applications on-premises. As even more companies embark on their digital transformation journey, the range of mission and business-critical applications has continued to expand, even more so because technology drives innovation and growth. This has further accelerated in the past months, spurred in part by our rapidly changing global economy.
As a result, the definition of mission-critical applications is evolving and goes well beyond systems of record for many businesses. It’s part of why we never stopped investing across the platform to enable you to increase the availability, security, scalability, and performance of your core applications running on Azure. The expansion of mission-critical apps will only accelerate as AI, IoT, analytics, and new capabilities become more pervasive.
We’re seeing the broadening scope of mission-critical scenarios both within Microsoft and in many of our customers’ industry sectors. For example, Eric Boyd, in his blog, outlined how companies in healthcare, insurance, sustainable farming, and other fields have chosen Microsoft Azure AI to transform their businesses. Applications like Microsoft Teams have now become mission-critical, especially this year, as many organizations had to enable remote workforces. This is also reflected by the sheer number of meetings happening in Teams.
Going beyond Azure services and capabilities
Many organizations we work with are eager to realize myriad benefits for their own business-critical applications, but first need to address questions around their cloud journey, such as:
- Are the core applications I use on-premises certified and supported on Azure?
- As I move to Azure, can I retain the same level of application customization that I have built over the years on-premises?
- Will my users experience any impact in the performance of my applications?
In essence, they want to make sure that they can continue to capitalize on the strategic collaboration they’ve forged with their partners and ISVs as they transition their core business processes to the cloud. They want to continue to use the very same applications that they spent years customizing and optimizing on-premises.
Microsoft understands that running your business on Azure goes beyond the services and capabilities that any platform can provide. You need a comprehensive ecosystem. Azure has always been partner-oriented, and we continue to strengthen our collaboration with a large number of ISVs and technology partners, so you can run the applications that are critical to the success of your business operations on Azure.
A deeper look at the growing spectrum of mission-critical applications
Today, you can run thousands of third-party ISV applications on Azure. Many of these ISVs in turn depend on Azure to deliver their software solutions and services. Azure has become a mission-critical platform for our partner community as well as our customers.
When most people think of mission-critical applications, enterprise resource planning systems (ERP), supply chain management (SCM), product lifecycle management (PLM), and customer relationship management (CRM) applications are often the first examples that come to mind.
However, to illustrate the depth and breadth of our mission-critical ecosystem, consider these distinct and very different categories of applications that are critical for thousands of businesses around the world:
- Enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems.
- Data management and analytics applications.
- Backup, and business continuity solutions.
- High-performance computing (HPC) scenarios that exemplify the broadening of business-critical applications that rely on public cloud infrastructure.
Azure’s deep ecosystem addresses the needs of customers in all of these categories and more.
When most people think of mission-critical applications ERP, SCM, PLM, and CRM applications are often the first examples that come to mind. Some examples on Azure include:
- SAP—We have been empowering our enterprise customers to run their most mission-critical SAP workloads on Azure, bringing the intelligence, security, and reliability of Azure to their SAP applications and data.
- Viewpoint, a Trimble company—Viewpoint has been helping the construction industry transform through integrated construction management software and solutions for more than 40 years. To meet the scalability and flexibility needs of both Viewpoint and their customers, a significant portion of their clients are now running their software suite on Azure and experiencing tangible benefits.
Data management and analytics
Data is the lifeblood of the enterprise. Our customers are experiencing an explosion of mission-critical data sources, from the cloud to the edge, and analytics are key to unlocking the value of data in the cloud. AI is a key ingredient, and yet another compelling reason to modernize your core apps on Azure.
- DataStax—DataStax Enterprise, a scale out, hybrid, cloud-native NoSQL database built on Apache Cassandra™, in conjunction with Azure, can provide a foundation for personalized, real-time scalable applications. Learn how this combination can enable enterprises to run mission critical workloads to increase business agility, without compromising compliance and data governance.
- Informatica—Informatica has been working with Microsoft to help businesses ensure that the data that is driving your customer and business decisions is trusted, authenticated, and secure. Specifically, Informatica is focused on the quality of the data that is powering your mission-critical applications and can help you derive the maximum value from your existing investments.
- SAS®—Microsoft and SAS are enabling customers to easily run their SAS workloads in the cloud, helping them unlock critical value from their digital transformation initiatives. As part of our collaboration, SAS is migrating its analytical products and industry solutions onto Azure as the preferred cloud provider for the SAS Cloud. Discover how mission-critical analytics is finding a home in the cloud.
Backup and disaster recovery solutions
Uptime and disaster recovery plans that minimize recovery time objective (RTO) and recovery point objective (RPO) are the top metrics senior IT decision-makers pay close attention to when it comes to mission-critical environments. Backing up critical data is a key element of putting in place robust business continuity plans. Azure provides built-in backup and disaster recovery features, and we also partner with industry leaders like Commvault, Rubrik, Veeam, Veritas, Zerto, and others so you can keep using your existing applications no matter where your data resides.
- Commvault—We continue to work with Commvault to deliver data management solutions that enable higher resiliency, visibility, and agility for business-critical workloads and data in our customers’ hybrid environments. Learn about Commvault’s latest offerings—including support for Azure VMware Solution and why their Metallic SaaS suite relies exclusively on Azure.
- Rubrik—Learn how Rubrik helps enterprises achieve low RTOs, self-service automation at scale, and accelerated cloud adoption.
- Veeam—Read how you can use Veeam’s solution portfolio to backup, recover, and migrate mission-critical workloads to Azure.
- Veritas—Find out how Veritas InfoScale has advanced integration with Azure that simplifies the deployment and management of your mission-critical applications in the cloud.
- Zerto—Discover how the extensive capabilities of Zerto’s platform help you protect mission critical applications on Azure.
- Teradici—Finally, Teradici underscores how the lines between mission-critical and business-critical are blurring. Read how business continuity plans are being adjusted to include longer term scenarios.
HPC applications are often the most intensive and highest-value workloads in a company, and are business-critical in many industries, including financial services, life sciences, energy, manufacturing and more. The biggest and most audacious innovations from supporting the fight against COVID-19, to 5G semiconductor design; from aerospace engineering design processes to the development of autonomous vehicles, and so much more are being driven by HPC.
- Ansys—Explore how Ansys Cloud on Azure has proven to be vital for business continuity during unprecedented times.
- Rescale—Read how Rescale can provide a turnkey platform for engineers and researchers to quickly access Azure HPC resources, easing the transition of business-critical applications to the cloud.
You can rely on the expertise of our partner community
Many organizations continue to accelerate the migration of their core applications to the cloud, realizing tangible and measurable value in collaboration with our broad partner community, which includes global system integrators like Accenture, Avanade, Capgemini, Wipro, and many others. For example, UnifyCloud recently helped a large organization in the financial sector modernize their data estate on Azure while achieving 69 percent reduction in IT costs.
We are excited about the opportunities ahead of us, fueled by the power of our collective imagination.
“The construction industry relies on Viewpoint to build and host the mission-critical technology used to run their businesses, so we have the highest possible standards when it comes to the solutions we provide. Working with Microsoft has allowed us to meet those standards in the Azure cloud by increasing scalability, flexibility and reliability – all of which enable our customers to accelerate their own digital transformations and run their businesses with greater confidence.” —Dan Farner, Senior Vice President of Product Development, Viewpoint (a Trimble Company)
“Business critical applications require a transformational data architecture built on scale-out data and microservices to enable dramatically improved operations, developer productivity, and time-to-market. With Azure and DataStax, enterprises can now run mission critical workloads with zero downtime at global scale to achieve business agility, compliance, data sovereignty, and data governance.”—Ed Anuff, Chief Product Officer, DataStax
“As Microsoft’s 2020 Data Analytics Partner of Year, Informatica works hand-in-hand with Azure to solve mission critical challenges for our joint customers around the world and across every sector. The combination of Azure’s scale, resilience and flexibility, along with Informatica’s industry-leading Cloud-Native Data Management platform on Azure, provides customers with a platform they can trust with their most complex, sensitive and valuable business critical workloads.”—Rik Tamm-Daniels, Vice President of strategic ecosystems and technology, Informatica
“SAS and Microsoft share a vision of helping organizations make better decisions as they strive to serve customers, manage risks and improve operations. Organizations are moving to the cloud at an accelerated pace. Digital transformation projects that were scheduled for the future now have a 2020 delivery date. Customers realize analytics and cloud are critical to drive their digital growth strategies. This partnership helps them quickly move to Microsoft Azure, so they can build, deploy, and manage analytic workloads in a reliable, high-performant and cost-effective manner.”—Oliver Schabenberger, Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Technology Officer, SAS
Read the Mission-critical analytics finds a home in the cloud blog.
“Microsoft is our Foundation partner and selecting Microsoft Azure as our platform to host and deliver Metallic was an easy decision. This decision sparks customer confidence due to Azure’s performance, scale, reliability, security and offers unique Best Practice guidance for customers and partners. Our customers rely on Microsoft and Azure-centric Commvault solutions every day to manage, migrate and protect critical applications and the data required to support their digital transformation strategies.”—Randy De Meno, Vice President/Chief Technology Officer, Microsoft Practice & Solutions
“Enterprises depend on Rubrik and Azure to protect mission-critical applications in SAP, Oracle, SQL and VMware environments. Rubrik helps enterprises move to Azure securely, faster, and with a low TCO using Rubrik’s automated tiering to Azure Archive Storage. Security minded customers appreciate that with Rubrik and Microsoft, business critical data is immutable, preventing ransomware threats from accessing backups, so businesses can quickly search and restore their information on-premises and in Azure.”—Arvind Nithrakashyap, Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder, Rubrik
Learn how enterprises use Rubrik on Azure.
“Veeam continues to see increased adoption of Microsoft Azure for business-critical applications and data across our 375,000 plus global customers. While migration of applications and data remains the primary barrier to the public cloud, we are committed to helping eliminate these challenges through a unified Cloud Data Management platform that delivers simplicity, flexibility and reliability at its core, while providing unrivaled data portability for greater cost controls and savings. Backed by the unique Veeam Universal License – a portable license that moves with workloads to ensure they’re always protected – our customers are able to take control of their data by easily migrating workloads to Azure, and then continue protecting and managing them in the cloud.”—Danny Allan, Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President for Product Strategy, Veeam
“Thousands of customers rely on Veritas to protect their data both on-premises and in Azure. Our partnership with Microsoft helps us drive the data protection solutions that our enterprise customers rely on to keep their business-critical applications optimized and immediately available.”—Phil Brace, Chief Revenue Officer, Veritas
“Microsoft has always leveraged the expertise of its partners to deliver the most innovative technology to customers. Because of Zerto’s long-standing collaboration with Microsoft, Zetro’s IT Resilience platform is fully integrated with Azure and provides a robust, fully orchestrated solution that reduces data loss to seconds and downtime to minutes. Utilizing Zerto’s end-to-end, converged backup, DR, and cloud mobility platform, customers have proven time and time again they can protect mission-critical applications during planned or unplanned disruptions that include ransomware, hardware failure, and numerous other scenarios using the Azure cloud – the best cloud platform for IT resilience in the hybrid cloud environment.”—Gil Levonai, CMO and SVP of Product, Zerto
“The longer business continues to be disrupted, the more the lines blur and business critical functions begin to shift to mission critical, making virtual desktops and workstations on Microsoft Azure an attractive option for IT managers supporting remote workforces in any function or industry. Teradici Cloud Access Software offers a flexible and secure solution that supports demanding business critical and mission critical workloads on Microsoft Azure and Azure Stack with exceptional performance and fidelity, helping businesses gain efficiency and resilience within their business continuity strategy.”—John McVay, Director of Strategic Alliances, Teradici
“It is imperative for Ansys to support our customers’ accelerating needs for on-demand high performance computing to drive their increasingly complex engineering requirements. Microsoft Azure, with its purpose-built HPC and robust go-to market capabilities, was a natural choice for us, and together we are enabling our joint customers to keep designing innovative products even as they work from home.”—Navin Budhiraja, Vice President and General Manager, Cloud and Platform, Ansys
“Robust and stable business critical systems are paramount for success. Rescale customers leveraging Azure HPC resources are taking advantage of the scalability, flexibility and intelligence to improve R&D, accelerate development and reduce costs not possible with a fixed infrastructure.”—Edward Hsu, Vice President of Product, Rescale
Read the Business Critical Systems that Drive Innovation blog.
“Customers are transitioning business-critical workloads to Azure and realizing significant cost benefits while modernizing their applications. Our solutions help customers develop cloud strategy, modernize quickly, and optimize cloud environments while minimizing risk and downtime.”—Vivek Bhatnagar, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer, UnifyCloud