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Cloud Adoption Summit Sunnyvale: Cloud Journey Story Series

Palo Alto Networks, AMD, High Radius, Automation Anywhere, Rackspace, Michaels Stores, Lytics, Ancestry INC, Workspot Cloud Adoption Summit Sunnyvale, CA April 27th 2023 For organizations far along in their cloud journey or just at the beginning, this full day summit offered insightful perspectives on all stages of interaction with the cloud. The Cloud Adoption Summit in Sunnyvale featured a variety of Google Cloud customers that shared their stories surrounding securing cloud adoption, cloud cost optimization, and how to leverage AI when migrating to the cloud. The program at this 2Gather also featured an interactive partner panel led by Jim Anderson, the Vice President of North America Partners at Google, focused breakout sessions that featured shared experiences and challenges from key leaders, and a panel led by Olga Lykova @OlgaLykovaMBA , Head of Go To Market at Workspot, featuring speakers from Intel, Salesforce, Google and LinkedIn. Dwyane Mann, CISO & VP Of AI, Fraud and Data at Michaels Stores shared a cloud journey story that focused on the different options an organization is presented with when migrating to the cloud. The session discussed the distinction between creating a new infrastructure and a conventional cloud migration. These differences include cost structure, design frameworks, and team dynamics. Key takeaways and lessons shared with the audience include:Conduct MVP’s, which is the method whereby only core features that solve specific issues are deployed. Identify core features and cost management strategies with leadership early in the process to reduce friction points in the future. Effectively label each stage within a cloud migration and its functionality. Involve more teams in the cost project to increase transparency.   

Categories:Google Cloud StrategyHybrid and MulticloudCloud MigrationCloud Operations

2Gather Core Concepts: Let’s Talk Tech Atlanta

In April, C2C hosted its first 2Gather event in the Atlanta, Georgia area, a unique installment of the Let’s Talk Tech series, cohosted with Google Cloud and featuring Google Principal Developer Advocate Kelsey Hightower. Kelsey joined a roster of distinguished speakers including Alex Barnes, Head of Infrastructure at Calendly, Russ Ayres, Senior Vice President of Security Architecture and Engineering at Equifax, and Rae Williams, Director of Customer Engineering at Google, for a full program of conversations tackling some of the biggest issues facing the cloud technology space today. Read on below for a roundup of some of the terms, products, and themes the conversations covered.  Open source: Any software whose source code is freely available to all users for collaborative review. Russ and Alex are both sympathizers with open source philosophy, and Kelsey is a veteran of the open source community. In his words, “When you go out into the open-source world, you get to define technology for the world.”Serverless: A cloud computing model allowing customers to access resources allocated by providers on demand without having to interact with a server, which Kelsey called “The final chapter of a mature compute pattern.”Platform engineering: Streamlining infrastructure to make tools and services immediately available to teams for operation and use. According to Alex, platform engineering allows an organization to “present all capabilities as things you can consume programmatically to unlock velocity.”Configuration management: The process for ensuring that products and systems maintain the same design and perform the same way. Russ contrasted configuration management from policy with the mantra, “If it was appropriately written it would be following the policy.”   KubernetesGoogle’s open-source containerization solution for software deployment and scaling has been setting standards and unlocking potential in the cloud space for nearly a decade. Kelsey’s history with Kubernetes is well known, and Rae made sure to capitalize on the opportunity to press him for his comments in front of a live audience. For context, Kelsey compared Kubernetes to contemporary projects in DevOps, insisting that DevOps engineers too often miss the forest for the trees. “What Kubernetes represents is a ten-year-old pattern for assigning software to servers,” he said. “It’s the system you would build if you had the big picture.” CalendlyCalendly is a business communication platform offering unique scheduling solutions for organizations looking to maximize efficiency. Head of Infrastructure Alex Barnes joined Aiven Vice President of Product Marketing Amy Krishnamohan (@amy.km) for a fireside chat about the company’s journey on Google Cloud. Calendly was initially built on Ruby on Rails, but later wanted to invest in Kubernetes. Google was an obvious choice for a hosting solution, especially since calendar management is so essential to the company’s offerings. “Google Calendar is a massive part of what we interact with,” Alex explained. “How better to build on that relationship than to build on their platform?”Alex expanded on these comments via email after event. “The partnership with Aiven and Google Cloud has allowed us to build a robust cloud data infrastructure that can handle the demands of our users,” he told C2C. “And it has given us the flexibility to scale up quickly, without having to worry about managing the underlying infrastructure.”  AIPredictably, many members of the audience were excited to ask questions about recent developments in AI. Kelsey was quick to dispel any notions that AI is going to make tech professionals irrelevant or push them out of the market. Instead, he said, AI is providing a new baseline for innovation. When looking at generative AI solutions like ChatGPT, Kelsey said, users and developers should ask, “What is the dataset, and where is that dataset created?” Tech practitioners can still develop new solutions beyond the limits of the datasets used to train these products. “If ChatGPT can generate the code,” Kelsey told the audience, “It means we need a different interface.” SecuritySecurity was the main focus of Russ’s comments during the customer panel with Alex and Kelsey. As Senior Vice President of Security Architecture and Engineering at Equifax, Russ is responsible for securing highly sensitive personal data at one of the leading financial services organizations. However, Russ originally came to security as a developer. Coming from that background, Russ believes that “Good security is good engineering,” and vice versa. “Most security solutions try to be everything to everyone,” he added. From his point of view, though, teams should aim to build with purpose on the front end so that solutions are designed to run efficiently and at scale with minimal risk. Hear from more industry leaders on these topics and join the conversation in person at our upcoming 2Gather event in Los Angeles: 2Gather Los Angeles: The Future is Now, Security and AI

Categories:AI and Machine LearningIdentity and Security

2Gather Core Concepts: Sunnyvale Developer's Event

C2C’s first event for developers took place on April 26th, 2023 in Sunnyvale, CA. The event focused on data analytics and how organization can optimize their data. Below are some data buzzwords and their definitions, an overview of Dataplex, a product that was demonstrated at the event, and a summary of the key topics discussed.  Data warehouse: A system that is used for reporting and data analysis. A data warehouse is a large storage of data that has been accumulated from a range of sources and helps businesses with decision-making processes.Data lake: A centralized infrastructure that is designed to store and process large amounts of data. A data lake can store data in its original form and process it in any variety. Data lakes are scalable platforms that allow organizations to ingest data from any source at multiple speeds. Data Lakehouse: A modern data platform that is a combination of a data warehouse and a data lake. BigQuery: Serverless architecture built as a data warehouse that works across clouds while scaling with your data. BigQuery allows users to pick the right feature set for workload demands and can match these needs in real time. It can also analyze data across multiple clouds and securely exchange data sets internally or across businesses, making it a platform with scalable analytics. BigLake: A storage engine that unifies data warehouses and lakes through BigQuery to gain access to data.   DataplexDataplex is a lake administration and data governance tool. It enables organizations to discover, manage and evaluate their data across data lakes and data warehouses. Dataplex also has a variety of features that allow organizations to choose specific items to easily manage data. For example, the tag management feature ensures that specific users have access to the right data by setting policy templates and tags with different sets of data. Dataplex also has automated data quality management features. For example, if a report quotes incorrect numbers, the data can be corrected with automated data tools rather than manually.   Data and and Real Time Analytics A major point raised at the developer’s event was that data is rooted in an event-driven architecture. For instance, customers who work in finance get highly interested in data in real time during specific periods. This interest is event-based, as it usually occurs when the industry reaches a quarter close. Moving data around can be a difficult task; however, there are certain cloud features that can solve this issue, such as Dataplex. The main concern surrounding organizing data is access control and governance. Customers want to know that steps have been taken to ensure that unauthorized users do not gain access to private data. Visibility and transparency are also core tenets when discussing access to data and its governance tools.

Categories:Data AnalyticsStorage and Data TransferGoogle Cloud Product UpdatesDatabases

How Cloud Computing Technology Contributes to Sustainable Computing Practices

Cloud computing has provided organizations in the tech industry with many benefits. Whether by helping to create a remote work environment or saving companies substantial costs, the cloud has transformed the ways businesses operate in the modern world. One of the major benefits of cloud computing technology is how it contributes to sustainability. The cloud reduces onsite activity associated with hardware and computing power consumption. Companies on the cloud do not need to maintain physical hardware or worry about disposing or recycling it. Cloud computing also eliminates the need to house and power an infrastructure. Not investing in physical IT equipment and consuming it as a service has environmental benefits because it helps to reduce the carbon footprint of major corporations. Below are some of the ways the cloud has helped contribute to sustainability efforts.  Reduces Energy Consumption The National Renewable Laboratory confirmed that data centers consume 1.8% of the overall energy consumption in the US each year because onsite servers need to be powered by large amounts of electricity. Data centers require significant upkeep and maintenance and power supplies and cooling fans are also needed, which use a lot of electricity. Not only does the electricity provide power for servers, but it is also used for cooling fans when servers overheat. Research funded by Google and conducted at the Berkeley lab found that cloud computing software can provide up to an 87% decrease in electricity usage. The energy savedx is so great that it could be used to power Los Angeles for an entire year, and can help businesses save 60-85% in energy costs.  Decreases Greenhouse Gas Emissions Sustainable computing decreases the amount of GHG emitted from data centers. GHG are created in data centers through the life cycling that occurs. This includes: producing materials for the equipment, assembling it, using it within the data center, and then disposing of it once the life cycle is complete. A survey conducted by Accenture revealed that cloud computing has a large environmental impact on carbon emissions. By using green computing approaches, large companies can decrease their carbon footprint from up to 30% and smaller organizations can decrease it to 90%. A CDP report also came to the conclusion that offsite services can reduce annual carbon emissions by 85.7 million metric tons. Dematerialization Dematerialization refers to the replacement of physical products that create greenhouse gas emissions to a virtual equivalent or replacement. Cloud services reduce energy consumption as well as e-waste, and encourage organizations to conduct their businesses virtually. Examples include video conferencing and sharing documents rather than printing multiple copies to distribute to a large number of employees. Using green computing architectures results in fewer physical machines and hardware, which means having a lower environmental impact. The cloud allows businesses to focus on their daily tasks without having to worry about IT and maintaining infrastructure that they would have onsite. By reducing physical products, such as equipment and hardware, cloud computing reduces the amount of e-waste that occurs when disposing of these products. As mentioned, it also helps organizations to go paperless with cloud storage options, such as Google Drive. Utilization RatesOn-prem companies use their own private data centers, which means the equipment is purchased and then set up to deal with high usage spikes, which results in lower utilization rates. When the hardware isn’t being used, energy is still being used which negatively impacts the environment. The cloud decreases the amount of machine use that an organization would require, translating to higher utilization. Since cloud servers do not require physical equipment, they tend to be 2 to 4 times more efficient because of a strong infrastructure.  Hardware SpeedData center hardware is used for long amounts of time before an upgrade or a replacement due to high costs. Because of their higher utilization rates, public cloud servers have a smaller lifecycle, which creates a quicker refresh time. It is more cost efficient for public cloud servers to upgrade on a regular basis, because new technology has higher efficiency rates. The more efficient hardware is, the less energy it will use in the long run. In conclusion, cloud computing services operate with higher resource (or energy) efficiency compared to traditional data centers. Sustainable computing is rooted in the concept of sharing services and hence maximizing the effectiveness of resources.  Creates a Shift to Renewable Energy SourcesCloud data centers have also shifted to renewable sources of energy to power their operations, reducing their carbon footprint. By using solar, hydropower, and wind, companies are attempting to  generate more eco-friendly electricity. Cloud providers are currently working towards creating more renewable energy options.  Helps with Remote WorkingEmployees of an organization no longer need to be in an office, they can work from anywhere, at any time, at any place.The cloud allows employees to share and distribute documentation through its server. Working collaboratively is now possible because of cloud computing as employees can now share company information in a secure and safe environment. Secure data storage and management allows for a smooth work environment for both employees and the business. Workers no longer need to go on long commutes, decreasing the amount of pollution and e-waste that is occurring within the environment.  Rackspace Technology and Green Computing Rackspace Technology is a cloud computing services pioneer with multi cloud solutions across apps, data, and security. The platform recognizes that it is time for enterprises to prioritize sustainability, and IT leaders must take the lead in driving sustainability efforts.  Rackspace’s Chief Architect, Nirmal Ranganathan, states that “Cloud computing, green computing architectures, design principles, and understanding the data around energy consumption are all critical components to modernize an IT industrial complex skills, infrastructure, and applications. For a more sustainable IT future, the key to sustainability efforts is in the data. Differing perspectives about business pledges versus their actual performance is ongoing and constant. Often, the former is more ambitious than the latter. Data will play a vital role in the drive toward net zero to verify claims made by business partners and to accurately measure a business’ own carbon footprint.” Rackspace focuses on empowering companies to grow using technology. Through the delivery of cloud services, building efficient serverless architectures and embodying design principles focused on driving long term value creation, Rackspace Technology is contributing to an overall reduction of energy consumption and building Sustainable IT. Migrating and modernizing companies to Cloud environments helps to reduce the number of over-provisioned, energy-hungry data centers across an enterprise.

Categories:Cloud OperationsSustainability

Women in Cloud: Meet Olga Lykova

Please introduce yourself.My name is Olga Lykova. Actually, it’s Olga Ivanou. I’m newly married and getting used to using the new last name.I currently go by three titles. I work at Workspot and I have recently been promoted to run all of the go-to-market. I’m responsible for cloud partnerships with companies like Google, AWS, Microsoft, Intel, and NetApp. I also run our business development team and partner marketing, so a lot of the initiatives with C2C are under my realm.I’m also a founder of Women in Industries, which is a 10-year-old network. The network is known for their annual panels featuring executive women leaders who share their experiences in an open forum to help professionals discover how to build their dream career, overcome obstacles, build their support bench, find mentorship and sponsorship, and navigate specialization change in pursuit of a "dream job." It is rare that we can have open discussions about what an ideal career looks like. In the last 10 years we had multiple C-level executives from Google, Salesforce, LinkedIn, Adobe, and even the NBA join our panels, sharing their diverse experience with our network.My third title is Thought Leader for Forbes Business Council, I write articles on business trends and leadership insights.  What is your secret to managing a team of people?I think this is a twofold concept. First is managing the partners, and second is managing the team. Managing partners is about determining what drives them and what their key motivators are, which has helped me a lot. Working with C2C, I view you as a partner, and it’s about bringing the right customers that will share an exciting story or thought-provoking content. I think about what a partner needs and then build a go-to-market strategy surrounding that. For companies who have a great product that fills a gap for a well-known brand, the best way to generate revenue is to attach themselves to the partner. It is a very different way of marketing because you have to become an extension of a different sales team, speak their language, and ensure ongoing transparency with customers and partners. When it comes to building my team, I don’t usually state a salary range when interviewing. My favorite question to ask is, “what would make you happy?” We define ourselves in a title role as well as the monetary component, and I don’t want to limit people to a certain number. I want to figure out what makes them happy in that role. That’s been my winning formula to get the right people who also feel appreciated by the company. I also always want to recognize the work of people who go above and beyond. When people get creative and push for new ideas, I try to recognize them in front of the executives on a weekly basis.  How has your journey been becoming an official member of the Forbes Business Development Council?Every time I went to events, I would bring my notepad. At my first company, Apttus, I suggested the idea of turning my notes into a blog post about post-event content. When I joined Copper and was working with their marketing team, I thought we could elevate content further by discussing the journeys of start-ups, since we were working with many of them at the time. One of the CMOs suggested that I should write for Forbes, since I was already writing about webinars and doing a lot of content output. I applied, did the interview process and now I’ve been writing for them for 4 years.It’s all about different topics, and I love how it’s open. It’s similar to what C2C advocates for about sharing insights and best practices and staying away from a sales pitch. It’s easy to start making content look like a sales pitch, so I have to take a step back and remember to talk about what customers are asking for. My favorite article was writing about top tips I’ve heard over the years from leaders. A tip that has still stuck with me is anytime you have an issue, don’t hide behind an email. Pick up the phone and talk to the other person, no matter how uncomfortable it is. Works every time! What is the best advice you have ever received? One of my biggest motivators is Corinne Sklar, Vice President of Marketing at IBM Consulting. We worked together on multiple panels, and she has really inspired me. She once said, “do you have that crazy feeling of being excited and nervous in your stomach when you are doing something?” I said, always. She goes “keep that feeling, because that’s your motivator, and that’s how you know that you’re learning”. When I feel nervous about not knowing how to do something, I realize I'm actually in the process of learning and figuring it out.  Where do you see yourself in 5 years? I think the industry that Workspot is in is at a pivotal point. The industry is on a peak of change, and I never worked for a company that had a product that was so ahead of the game until I worked at Workspot. I think the biggest opportunity for us is to amplify that message. The challenge I want to figure out is, while the industry is changing, I want to see how customers react to it and how we tackle industry changes. On a personal level, I’ve always wanted to create a one-stop shop where people can come and thrive. I started writing a book called “Rules to Thrive.” I was looking at the definition of thrive, and the word itself means “to grow vigorously, flourish, gain wealth or possession, and prosper”. I think that definition incorporates learning, growing and achieving success. I don’t believe it’s an end destination, because we’re always trying to grow. Once you achieve one dream, you start dreaming again. I want to unite young professionals and small businesses together to become that one-stop shop for successful career growth. The end goal after 5 years is to be that one place where people can network about a variety of subjects and topics through referrals as well as advocating for things that work.  What is your favorite aspect of being a keynote speaker at our events? In that room, you have people who want to be there. It’s a gathering of people who are curious and want to do better for their company. You are in a place where the mindset is amazing, because they are not required to be there, they want to be there. My favorite part is not only do we get to talk about the lessons we have learned, but we also get to share things to avoid. We get a chance to be transparent about what’s possible and what’s not possible. I always encourage our customers to share what didn’t work and what could have been done differently. In the audience, I’d say one out of 5 people may have been considering a similar project, and as speakers we are giving them the tools to learn. I think when you share what didn’t work, they walk away with something tangible, where they can re-evaluate how to tackle something. Also, it’s just really fun! You feel like you’re a part of a community, not just an event.  How does Workspot empower female employees? I think it’s about who wants to step in and help. I don’t think we differentiate who it is and who wants to do it. We know what the issues and gaps are within the company, and it’s about people who raise their hands to get stuff done. I think there’s room to grow, but for many people, it has to do with the ability to ask for it. I think many of us think, if I don’t fill two out of five requirements for a job, I’m not going to apply for it.Just recently, my mother was applying for a job and then didn't want to apply because she didn’t fit all the requirements. I told her that you can learn on the job and the company can teach you. This is the mindset that needs to change, because you don’t have to fit all the requirements for the job description, you just have to have the willingness to learn and to be able to ask questions. Workspot enables employees to do that, you just have to ask for the opportunity.  What inspired you to become a founder of the Women in Industries Network? Apttus, now Conga, was the first tech company I ever worked for, and I didn’t really understand how to evolve in my role. Partnerships and go-to-market was a new concept for me, and these are newer roles in the industry all together. For me, I wanted to learn from my partners and start creating a community. We started doing events, and the first one was at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco, with around 50 people in attendance. After the event was done, I felt super motivated and received the insights that I wanted. A few months later, people were asking if we were going to do this again. It then evolved into more sessions, and just last year we hosted a female panel that talked about making six figures. Another topic that was covered was how we can help people to land their dream interview and prep them on how to stand out. It started from my own natural curiosity and then turned into a few thousand members10 years later.  Check out our other Women in Cloud articles here:Women in Cloud: Meet Shobana ShankarWomen in Cloud: Meet Clair Hur 

Categories:C2C Community SpotlightGoogle Cloud StrategyGoogle Cloud PartnersMarketing

Practical Tips for Corporate and Individual Sustainability (full recording)

At this virtual event, speakers from Google, Intel, and Workspot presented practical tips for corporate and individual sustainability. Corporate culture is essential to the success of any organization. Leaders should strive to embed sustainability practices in their organization’s core culture by continuously incentivizing and educating employees about the importance of sustainability. At this 2Chat event, panelists shared insights about how their respective organizations are adopting sustainable practices to reduce their carbon footprint, conserve resources, and promote social responsibility. They also addressed the challenges and opportunities that come with implementing sustainable strategies and the benefits these strategies offer the environment and the corporate bottom line.Our speakers focused on the changes they have made to reach these outcomes. Attendees learned more about each organization’s efforts, such as: How every single product operated on Google Cloud is carbon neutral, from at-home Google Search to a large business running on Google Cloud Intel’s success in lowering its carbon footprint by 80% Workspot’s advanced power management on Google Cloud, which increases carbon reduction for compute resources by up to 72% compared to legacy VDI on-premise data centers running 24/7  Watch the full recording here:  


Google Cloud Certifications

Google Cloud certifications will allow you and your teams to strengthen your knowledge of Google Cloud products and help to transform your business. Certifications help employees grow into leadership positions in the workplace and offer other professional development opportunities that relate to the cloud. Both single classes and full learning paths that enhance your cloud skills are available, and there are specific Google Cloud certifications depending on the level of knowledge you wish to obtain. These classes and courses will cover the infrastructure of the cloud, and will also equip you with the skill set for a desired position. This article will cover the different certifications, certification levels, and possible positions and titles that you can work toward upon receiving your certification.  Foundational CertificationThe foundational certification does not require a technological background and provides you with a foundation for understanding Google cloud products, services, tools, and benefits. Recommended roles involve high collaboration with other team members who have a highly technical background. Cloud Digital Leader This certification provides you with the ability to articulate the main functionalities of Google products and services as well as how they fit into an organization. Overall, the Cloud Digital Leader role is rooted in explaining how Google can help to support the goals of a business and covers cloud computing basics. This certification tackles digital transformation with Google Cloud, infrastructure and application modernization, innovating with data, and Google Cloud security.  Associate CertificationAssociate certifications will provide you with the skill set to manage Google Cloud projects. This certification is ideal for a candidate who has prior experience with managing cloud enterprise solutions and monitoring cloud operations.Associate Cloud EngineersAssociate Cloud Engineers monitor and deploy applications. The Google Cloud Console is used to perform common tasks that are associated with managing enterprise solutions. Projects within the role leverage Google-managed or self-managed services within the cloud. This certification will help you prepare to set up a cloud environment, deploy a cloud solution, and configure security plans that are effective for cloud solutions.  Professional Cloud CertificationThis level of certification strengthens technical skills related to the design and implementation of the Cloud. Prior experience in deploying cloud solutions and setting up cloud environments is critical for the Professional Cloud Certification.Cloud Architect Professional Cloud Architects assist with organizations applying core Google Cloud products and services. Cloud architects design and implement cloud solutions that help a business to fulfill their goals and reach their objectives. Many of their responsibilities are rooted in designing and managing the cloud infrastructure. Other cloud skills you may obtain include optimizing technical business processes as well as configuring access and security.Cloud Database Engineer The Cloud Database Engineer manages Google Cloud solutions used by organizations to both retrieve and store data. The core responsibility of this role entails translating business objectives into scalable solutions that enhance a database. Other responsibilities a Cloud Database Engineer include migrating data solutions and deploying databases within the cloud. Cloud DeveloperA Cloud Developer creates applications using Google-recommended tools and approaches. The candidate for this role has prior experience with developer tools, managing services, and cloud-native applications. The applications are highly scalable and flexible. This certificate will enhance your understanding of managing deployed applications as well as building and testing applications to ensure their effectiveness. Data Engineer This role enables decision-making that is related to data. Data Engineers build and monitor data systems while also focusing on the security and compliance aspect of them. They also ensure that data systems are scalable to meet the needs of a business. Data Engineers also deploy and work with pre-existing machine learning models to strengthen solution quality. Building and designing data systems is the primary responsibility of this role. Cloud DevOps Engineer Cloud DevOps Engineers implement processes within the systems development life cycle using tools and methods that are recommended by Google. They build software delivery pipelines and maintain production systems while also balancing service reliability. Building pipelines for services, creating service monitoring strategies and optimizing service performance are also involved when being a Cloud DevOps Engineer.Cloud Security EngineerA Cloud Security Engineer designs secure workloads within the cloud. By examining best practices and using Google Cloud Technology, a Cloud Security Engineer develops a scalable as well as flexible infrastructure. The candidate for this certification should be knowledgeable in all aspects regarding cloud security, including organizational policies, access management, data protection, network security defenses, collecting Google Cloud logs, and dealing with incident responses. Managing cloud operations and ensuring security within the cloud environment is the primary responsibility of this role. Cloud Network Engineer A Cloud Network Engineer manages network architectures within the cloud. They may also work closely with architects who design the cloud infrastructure. Cloud Network Engineers use the Google Cloud Console to leverage experiences with network services, application neworks, and hybrid and multi-cloud connectivity. They also manage the security for the network architecture in order for successful cloud implementations to occur.Google Workspace Administrator This role transforms business objectives to policies and best practices that are accessed by users within the Cloud. By thoroughly understanding the infrastructure, the Google Workspace Administrator creates a collaborative environment where team members are working together and are able to efficiently access the data that they need. Through the use of programming languages and APIs, they develop workflows to ensure smooth communication within the cloud. Educating users, managing Workspace operations, and implementing Google Workspace access are daily tasks associated with the role. Other roles that are related to this certification include Cloud Solutions Engineer, IT System Administrator, and Collaboration Engineer. Machine Learning EngineerA Machine Learning Engineer builds machine learning models to solve business challenges using Google Cloud Technologies. An ML Engineer works with AI throughout the AI and ML development process and should be knowledgeable in the fields of data pipeline interaction, metrics interpretation, and model architecture. The candidate for this certification should also be familiar with other foundational concepts, including application development, data engineering, and infrastructure management. A Machine Learning Engineer creates scalable solutions that optimize performance by developing ML models, designing processing systems, and operating ML pipelines.

Categories:Careers in CloudGoogle Cloud Product UpdatesGoogle Cloud Certifications

Enterprise Software and the Role of the CIO: An Interview with Mark Templeton of Workspot

Mark Templeton spent more than twenty years at Citrix Systems before leaving in 2015. Since then, he has served as an executive and board member at numerous companies in tech and beyond. In 2020, he joined C2C partner Workspot as Chairman and Director, which soon brought him into the C2C community as a guest at in-person events hosted in collaboration with Workspot. Mark’s years of experience and expertise as a leader in the IT space make his presence in our community a singular benefit to our members. To make that experience and expertise available to the rest of the C2C membership, we sat down with Mark for a wide-ranging conversation about the current enterprise software market and what software CIOs can do to help their businesses scale for long-term success. What's the most important trend currently defining the enterprise software/services market? We’re looking at a world now, if you're a CIO, where you have to have an opinion about the things you can control and the things you can’t, and how each of those contributes to the platform on which your business is built. That means you have to build systems that have the agility and flexibility and resilience to things that are out of your control, whether it’s a hurricane, a flood, any of these sort of geophysical things. Having a community of like-minded individuals to rely on is also important. Groups like C2C bring together technology and cloud users from across the globe to identify the latest trends on a daily basis. One ongoing discussion is about how the acceleration of enterprise SaaS across every segment in enterprise computing has become the reality. I think most enterprise CIOs have embraced it at some level, but it’s actually accelerating and picking up speed. What’s behind this acceleration of SaaS in recent years is of course the pandemic, and evolving work styles. Another huge element is the maturing of hyperscale clouds. It’s been amazing what’s happened in just the last five years in terms of the number of new services and what’s possible. The C2C community and team has facilitated discussions on this issue and will continue to do so as this issue gains steam. What makes this trend so significant? Consumerization of software is at the heart of driving and changing IT mindsets from meeting the minimum to actually going beyond and providing a consumer-like experience when it comes to enterprise computing. By adopting this “consume it yourself approach” it allows ITs energy, budget, etc. to be directed at business solutions to drive growth, reduce costs, increase velocity, protect IP, engage, retain talent, and more. Which vendors are leading this field? The one Google Cloud customer that’s a standout to me is Equifax. I served on the board of directors of Equifax for about ten years, including through the breach, and we had all of our own data centers and infrastructure, and we really were underestimating two things: our ability to stay ahead of the hackers and the bad guys and the role of hyperscale clouds when it came to security - which still holds true for lots of IT organizations. We came to understand that our less than ten global data centers were a fraction of the footprint and attack vector size of Google Cloud. Every day Google Cloud is attacked a thousand times more than our data centers, and as a result, as we all know, seeing attacks, detecting attacks, understanding attacks is what allows you to get ahead.We realized at Equifax we were never going to replicate that kind of a security model and competency, so we decided to go all in on Google Cloud, and not only has it created an amazing security consciousness and capability, it’s also allowed the company to create new business models. Equifax has been able to build a very sizable incremental business on Google Cloud as well as really accelerate the security profile of all of the existing business, so they’re definitely a leader.Some other examples are Intel and AMD, both of whom are C2C Global partners, because compute is a core part of any hyperscale cloud. Because of the AI and ML and the need to pipeline process tremendous amounts of data collaboratively across CPUs and GPUs, all of a sudden now, the network has become the new backplane for the worldwide computer.There are a lot of winners in the areas of enterprise SaaS and systems of record like ERP, HR, CRM, Salesforce, Workday, ServiceNow, etc. One that’s near and dear to my heart is the whole idea of the enterprise PC becoming a SaaS offering. That’s called a Cloud PC, and there leaders in Microsoft, Amazon, and Workspot, where all of a sudden with a PC computing utility you can use appliance-like devices for access, do it anywhere, and get a PC and workstation-like experience on them. There are new leaders being minted every single day that are too numerous to list. How should a CIO approach this trend? I think the first big approach the CIO has to take is to drive a mindset of change and growth, and do that by rejecting the inexorable power of inertia. Inertia is the number one thing that keeps organizations from embracing change. if you don’t have a CIO that’s got that tone at the top, everything else becomes difficult.CIOs must also embrace enterprise SaaS and dig in with the SaaS provider to understand how it’s built, because it does matter. You have to insist on cloud-native, because so many legacy ISVs have moved to the cloud with a lift-and-shift model, and the lift-and-shift model lacks a whole bunch of the native capabilities that clouds offer, like elasticity, like being very resilient to failure, and more.The third thing is not to adopt hybrid as a permanent state. The reason not to buy it is––I use this example: a plug-in hybrid. It has electric engines and it has gasoline engines. All of a sudden you took an automobile that has a hundred thousand parts and now you have a hundred and twenty-five thousand parts. That’s not the way to increase availability and reliability and lower costs. It’s about eliminating moving parts, so that’s why hybrid is a transitional tool in my opinion.The fourth thing in terms of approach is you’ve got to exist on multicloud support. You have to deeply inspect the cyber characteristics, and the readiness of the offering around cyber. And then I would sort of wrap up with something I think is close to the top of the list, and that is insist on full observability and transparency. That means you’ve got to really look at the telemetry that the SaaS offering has so that it can feed systems and allow you to answer the kind of business questions you need to answer when you’re at the C-suite table. Service levels around costs, around what systems are in greater use and what systems are in lesser use. There are just a lot of these business questions that I think today are pretty difficult for IT CIOs to answer which is why we rely on communities like C2C to connect and find answers. Extra Credit:  


On-the-Spot Feedback and a Sense of Community at Cloud Adoption Summit: Toronto

Before Bryan Phillips, Senior Manager of Product Marketing at Telus International, arrived at the executive dinner for speakers at the 2023 C2C Global Cloud Adoption Summit in Toronto, Canada, he had hit a wall trying to enlist Google’s support in resolving challenges related to GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). At dinner, he was seated alongside SADA Associate CTO of Security Mike Laramie. When Bryan shared some of the technology he’s working on at Telus and the roadblocks he’s encountered, Mike surprised him. “You know what, Bry,” he said, “I think we can have a conversation and further this along, but I may have a solution for you.”“This is something we’ve been trying to track down for a while, and not having the support that we were hoping to get from Google. No slight to Google on this one, but it just wasn’t far enough up the apple tree to get the awareness that we needed. Now I’m able to talk to a community member and get experiences in what they do, and how they’ve overcome things,” Bryan says. “After the dinner the following day we pretty much hung out together and continued the conversation.”Keynote session with Kelsey HightowerAt the event itself, Bryan and Mike took part in a daylong interactive program featuring a diverse roster of C2C partners and some of Google Cloud’s biggest customers in Canada, where cloud itself is Google’s number one product area. The full program included a robust partner panel exploring industry perspectives on cloud security and unique customer solutions, a discussion about organizational change in a time of industry correction with Deloitte, and a customer panel and keynote interview with Google Principal Developer Advocate Kelsey Hightower.“Kelsey’s keynote and his engagement into this event was really worth its weight in gold. His insights, his experience, the way that he approaches things, it was fundamental,” says Bryan. “We tend to overthink, and we end up either pricing ourselves out of the equation or we make things way more complicated than they need to be, so listening to his methodology and his approach to how he looks at problems was really, really enlightening.” “The sense of the word community is something I experienced firsthand at this C2C event.” Bryan joined the event to participate in a session on RPA (Robotic Process Automation) technology with C2C partner Automation Anywhere. Networking afterward, Bryan was able to share some ideas with Islay Wright, Director of BI Product Management at Lightspeed. “They’re a small company compared to the massive amount of geography and customers they support, and so automation is really in their wheelhouse,” Bryan explains. “We talk a lot around the managed service opportunities that we can bring to the table, and being in North America, we could even put a team onsite for them if they wanted us to. With all the technology in the cloud, we could easily manage them from anywhere.”Automation Anywhere breakoutsession with Telus InternationalAs usual for a C2C event, this new connection was just one of many for the guests onsite. Bryan’s sales team started promising conversations with several new customer contacts. For other attendees who showed up just to hear Kelsey speak, new business opportunities were an unexpected benefit. Stefan Kolesnikowicz, Principal Site Reliability Engineer at Achievers, was pleased to meet current clients Bell and ScotiaBank, and to get firsthand feedback from customers who use his tool.“At this event, for the first time in I don’t know how long, I felt like I could reach out to the community members that were there and share the experiences that we have, whether they’re positive, negative, and literally get feedback,” Bryan says. “There was no NDA signed. We could speak freely knowing that we’re not there to steal each other’s business or take our customers away from each other. The sense of the word community and being in a safe environment is something I experienced firsthand at this C2C event.” Extra Credit:  

Categories:C2C Community SpotlightAutomation

Ransomware Recovery with Google, NetApp, and Workspot (full recording)

A company becomes the victim of ransomware every 11 seconds. Despite billions of dollars spent to thwart ransomware attacks, an astonishing 66% of companies fell victim to these attacks in 2021, according to Sophos's State of Ransomware 2022 report. Organizations must take precautions to stop attacks before they happen, because recovering from ransomware takes a minimum of 30 days.Ransomware numbers are rising everywhere—by attack volume, ransom demands, and average ransom payments. And as threat sophistication increases, virtually every industry is experiencing growing incident rates. No organization is immune. Although attacks may seem inevitable, defensive measures should always be in place, and they're most effective when paired with a strong ransomware recovery plan.Google, NetApp, and Workspot are working together to help customers create a ransomware recovery plan. By using a proven storage platform, innovative clean cloud, and global cloud PCs, they're able to restore productivity for thousands of users around the globe within minutes. At a recent 2Chat event, speakers from these companies discussed the impact of ransomware on organizations and how you can improve your storage options by: Creating an isolated project  Preparing regions for capacity  Provisioning cloud PCs globally  Connecting to NetApp CVS for secure access to files and data Watch a full recording of the conversation here:  

Categories:Identity and SecurityStorage and Data Transfer

Which Google Cloud Product Are You According to Your Zodiac Sign?

Fun fact: Google Cloud announced its first product, App Engine, on April 7, 2008, making Google Cloud as a whole the pioneering, go-getter zodiac sign that is Aries. To honor C2C’s roots with Google Cloud, we're launching a new series of weekly horoscopes during Aries season, the first sign in the zodiac calendar. As the customer community, we want to enable connections between members, and sometimes that works best when we get to know ourselves first.But learning about the practice of astrology can be intimidating, so we’re here to put it in simple terms that anyone can understand—Google Cloud products!You can find your sun sign according to your birth date. From there, read on and let us know if you resonate with your Google Cloud product match. AriesMarch 21 to April 19 The Aries in your life is the one who is never at rest. An Aries is always at work on a project, absorbed in a game, or battling it out in an argument. Activity is an Aries’ comfort zone, and preparation and delay are their kryptonite. With Google Kubernetes Engine, your containers and clusters can automatically run and scale with no time lost on management or operations. Just like the Aries in your life, GKE is like a fire that burns until the fuel (or your per-pod billing budget) runs out.  TaurusApril 20 to May 20 If there is one thing a Taurus cares about, it’s comfort. A Taurus likes to make a firm plan and follow through without any interruptions or last-minute changes. You can count on a Taurus to be there for you when they say they will, but whatever you do, don’t flake on them. A Taurus is basically a human Security Command Center. With a Taurus, everything is always compliant, nothing is ever too vulnerable, and all threats are identified and eliminated immediately. That way, all your Taurus ever has to do is kick back and chill.  GeminiMay 21 to June 20 Like most air signs, that Gemini friend or family member will want to talk your ear off as they have a passion for intellectual conversations. They are rooted in the exchange of ideas, and the need to express themselves is not a trait they shy away from. This sign is just as interested in collecting information as they share it, which is why there is no surprise that a Gemini would be closely associated with Google’s Speech-to-Text and Text-to-Speech products that convert natural-sounding speech to text and vice versa. Geminis—as symbolized by twins—and these two Google products have a strong sense of duality and are associated with effective communication.   CancerJune 21 to July 22 The sensitive and emotional ones of the water signs, Cancers enjoy comfort and a sense of familiarity around them. They prefer to blend with their environments, making a hybrid or multicloud management platform like Anthos perfect for a Cancer’s complexity. Often thinking about nostalgic moments in life, Cancers are often caught up in reminisce, and likely appreciate the ability to bring their existing apps onto Anthos to scale and modernize their roots. Cancers and Anthos operate through consistency and routined patterns to achieve their goals.    LeoJuly 23 to August 22 Leos are people with ambitious goals and idealistic beliefs. They honor their commitments and work long and hard to see them through. When it comes to initiatives like sustainability, Leo is the sign you want in charge. That’s why Google Cloud’s Carbon Footprint is the product that suits Leo most. As Carbon Footprint reduces workload emissions and tracks footprint data, Leo is free to focus on the hard work of saving the planet, which will bring us that much closer to what Leos love most: a long, luxurious rest.  VirgoAugust 23 to September 22 For Virgos, knowledge is power. A Virgo needs to be in the know, up to date, and without a doubt at all times; otherwise, they’ll feel too out of touch to focus on what they need. That’s why a product like Cloud Monitoring feels like such a natural complement to the Virgo in your life. The last thing any Virgo wants is stress. With the uptime monitoring and metrics Cloud Monitoring offers for your applications’ performance, availability, and health, Virgos have all the insight they need to be their best selves.  LibraSeptember 23 to October 22 One weekend they’re reading their favorite novel and cooking a home-cooked meal, the next they may be off in Las Vegas with their closest friends partying up a storm. We’re talking about the social butterfly, Libra. Represented by the scales, Libras are all about balance and doing a little bit of everything, so they’re always ready for the unexpected. Libras and Cloud Load Balancing platform can juggle a large amount of tasks and activities at once. Whether it’s HTTP or TCP balancing, this tool ensures seamless deployment of deliverables. Similarly, the Libra in your life is multi-dimensional and may have a diverse set of interests or hobbies.    ScorpioOctober 23 to November 21 If you want a burst of fiery energy, just talk to any Scoripo. Though they are a water sign, Scorpios are known for their intensity and have no problem throwing themselves into unfamiliar situations. With their confidence and ability to handle confrontation, they are intrigued by the darker side of life. Scorpios aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty and can harness their own power even when operating behind the scenes, like Google Cloud’s Firewall. This Google product delivers granular control and ensures protection through networking fabric that is implemented throughout each workload. Scorpios and Firewall aren’t afraid to tackle threats head-on while still keeping their composure.   SagittariusNovember 22 to December 21 Sagittarius is the second most impulsive zodiac sign. Sagittarians are outgoing, unafraid to take risks, and quick both to anger and to forgive. If a Sagittarius was an app, therefore, it would almost certainly be no-code. A Sagittarius is not one to put painstaking thought into design and planning; a Sagittarius simply acts. Luckily, when a Sagittarius takes a shot, it usually hits the mark, making the Sagittarius in your life as reliable as the no-code development platforms available from AppSheet.  CapricornDecember 22 to January 19 A Capricorn is a sign with a strong awareness of its place in the world. Like all Earth signs, Capricorns are grounded, but more so even than other Earth signs, Capricorns want to remain rooted in their surroundings and respond to them accordingly. Consequently, a Capricorn—the most resourceful of the signs—would likely feel very comfortable with a product like Cloud Run, which allows you to run code in any language on a fully-managed platform and access resources in any of your network projects. That Cloud Run is pay-per-use also makes it a practical option any Earth sign would appreciate.  AquariusJanuary 20 to February 18 Looking forward to growth and personal progress comes naturally to an Aquarius. If you engage with an Aquarius, you’ll be quick to notice their wit and intellectuality. With advancement constantly on their minds, Aquarians are always searching for ways to self-improve and to share their knowledge with others. This makes an Aquarius like Looker, which organizes the world’s information and makes it accessible to all users. Don’t be surprised if you see them researching the latest fitness trends, online shopping to improve their aesthetic, or delivering insights to make the best business decisions. Aquarians and Looker are always striving to find out new pieces of information and determine new methods to get the job done!  PiscesFebruary 19 to March 20 Being receptive, spiritual, and impressionable, Pisces has an open mind and an open heart. Represented by two fish swimming in opposite directions, a Pisces will often feel as though they are being pulled by changes in their environment. However, this is what also makes them great at adapting, much like Vertex AI, which is able to scale machine learning models faster with fully managed tools. Both Vertex AI and Pisces are fluid and are able to operate quickly with new information or, perhaps, new ML model training and APIs. 

Categories:C2C News

Using FinOps for Cloud Cost Optimization (full recording)

FinOps—or cloud financial operations—is the practice of embedding financial accountability, management, and cost optimization within engineering teams. FinOps is growing in importance and relevance among financial and engineering teams alike.A recent Forrester report predicts that over 90% of organizations are overspending on cloud costs due to several factors, including lack of skills and over-provisioned resources. CIOs, business leaders, and the media are all talking about FinOps in 2023. Interest in FinOps is growing at an unprecedented rate, especially given recent economic fluctuations.C2C had the opportunity to host Sasha Kipervarg and Ken Cheney to bring their perspective about FinOps to the C2C community. Sasha is the co-founder and CEO of Ternary, the world's first native FinOps cloud cost optimization tool built for Google Cloud on Google Cloud. Ken Cheney is a business leader and advisor to SaaS and cloud vendors, large enterprise, and the government. During this informal chat, you will learn about the importance of: Accountability and enablement of cloud optimization Implementing this optimization via policies and useful resources (such as Ternary) that can help you:  tag resources (every workload, every cluster)  track untagged resources  track the biggest spenders and stay on top of the fluctuations in these costs  Reporting (the earlier the better) for aggregating spend and arriving at a total cost for various teams Setting reporting to make planning and forecasting easier.Watch the full recording here:  

Categories:Cloud OperationsSession Recording

CarCast with Bruno Aziza 3/19: Data! What Is it Good For?

This week, Bruno breaks down what matters and what doesn't matter in the world of Data (he's brought a special guest to help him out too!). This week, Bruno was featured in Harvard Business Review and he points to some of the latest research from that piece: for instance, did you know that 81% of organizations have increased their data and analytics investment over the past two years?!This CarCast covers:What To Pay Attention To & What To Ignore. Gartner's 2023 Emerging Tech and Trends Impact Radar is out!  The graphic and research behind it contains a lot of trends. One tip: look for the biggest bubble, closest to the center.  What To Expect at the 2023 Gartner Data & Analytics Summit.  Data Fabric, Data Products & Data Engineering are some of the trends to watch out for this week. Read Philip Russom's post to find out more here. Data Leaders You Can't Afford Not To Know or Follow.  Bruno points to the incredible journeys of Data Leaders at Carrefour, L'Oreal, Yves Saint Laurent, Groupe Rocher, Kerin, Swarovski & Servier and ways to connect with them here, here and here!And finally, if you are planning on attending the Gartner Data & Analytics Summit at the end of the month, don't hesitate to connect with Bruno and let him know if you'd like to meet in person, at sessions or the various Data, AI and analytics gatherings throughout the week!Analytically yours,Bruno

Categories:Data Analytics

Managing Complex Multicloud Security with Anthos (full recording)

After hearing the NEXT’22 presentation about validating an organization’s security posture, I was intrigued to find out more, specifically about the trends contributing to the growing complexity and real-world examples of solutions to these challenges. This C2C 2Chat grew out of this interest to find out more about this growing complexity, especially in multicloud environments, and to uncover how Anthos has helped in real-life instances.Google Cloud Innovator Champions and Fellows Jason Quek and Vincent Ledan joined from Sweden and France respectively to elaborate on this topic. Both are Anthos Fellows and as such are passionate about evangelizing about Google Cloud and Anthos and how the latter can help with security problems, including cloud-native security and platform engineering.    This event was a master class in Anthos and security, exploring factors adding complexity to the security landscape and to the very real concerns of organizations worldwide, including:How do I keep my applications running in a highly available manner and protect them against attacks?  How do I secure environments that span multiple clouds and also live on prem?  How can I most effectively secure clusters at scale? It’s easy to secure one or two clusters, but with so many options available for configuration, how do I do so most effectively?Together with my colleague Dimitris connecting from Greece, and our members from Asia Pacific, we were privileged to hear about real-life examples and solutions from our expert panelists from Scandinavia and Central Europe.  I am thrilled to have hosted this chat from my home in Sydney Australia and am in awe of the power of a truly global community like C2C, to bring members together to learn, but also to drive change that ultimately benefits customers (refer to the example and commentary on the final question).0:00 - 06:45 | Welcome and Introductions 07:30 - 12:30 | Challenges modern organizations face contributing to security landscape complexity: Organizations are looking to prevent malicious software supply chains, e.g. rogue containers running in a cluster; ensuring that all development teams use the same level of security; how to create network segregation given a cluster and network policy. We discussed Google’s controls (e.g. binary utilization) that allow management of containers in clusters, without creating bottlenecks in development teams. Platform Engineering teams are focussed on security at scale across multiple clouds,  beyond DevSecOps or even DevOps.  12.45 - 14:45 | How is the Anthos ecosystem responding to the challenges: Defense in Depth - creating multiple layers of defense; Critical functionality that exists within the Anthos ecosystem, like the Anthos Policy Controller based on the OPA Open Policy Agent ensuring that clusters are always pulling the latest security policies available via a controlled, auditable, and central repository that’s always up to date. On the Application side, there’s Anthos Service Mesh, ensuring the right microservices are talking to each other across multi-tenant workspaces. In this sense, a Defense-in-Depth approach with Anthos spans multiple layers of defense, including binary authorization, OPA gateways, and across Service Mesh.  14:45 - 17:45 | Common mistakes: Without these security mechanisms, organizations create opportunities for exposure, configuration mistakes, and developer mistakes in a cluster that might lead to leakage of private data, or the ability to retrieve logs of common shared nodes. It becomes important for developers and not just Kuberneters administrators to understand eviction logic, scheduling logic, and mitigation strategies. 18:00 -  30:00 | Actionable Tips and Examples, Validate security posture: When dealing with a multicloud mesh of clusters, a proven tip is to incorporate, as part of the cluster creation step, pulling out the security policies from a GIT repository.  Create landing zones for each of the environments to provide coverage for the intricacies of each cloud. Once these landing zones are set up, Anthos does the rest, resulting in a Kubernetes compliant cluster.  Use Anthos service mesh. Engage support and problem-solving. Support paths for Google-supported products. Consider the implications of an incubating fast-moving open-source software product like Istio for support and the ability to respond quickly. Reduce complexity and leverage the tools available, e.g. IAM security.  Consider security early on. In this particular example, implementing network security after a few deployments proved very difficult (and costly) Greater investment and focus are needed to effectively stress test and pen test clusters. 31:00 - 33:00 | Examples of container-aware load balancing and traffic encryption between services. 33:00 - 35:00 | Wrap up by Erika 35:00 - 44:00 | Q&A  Question from Ben from Brisbane Australia regarding Gatekeeper policies and book: Answer made reference to a book titled Google Anthos in Action, including a very practical chapter on Security and Policies and real-world use cases. Google Anthos in Action was written by a team of twenty-three Googlers involved with Anthos development and Anthos fellows assisting customers in the field, including our very own speaker Jason Quek, and also Scott Surovich, Google Cloud Fellow and Global Container Engineering Lead at HSBC. Here is the link to look inside the book. Discussion regarding much-needed standardization across public cloud providers: Answer made reference to https://www.pulumi.com/ as an example. Thoughts on how to kick off standardization conversations: we need large customers to band together and push for constructive dialogue across the cloud providers seeking a unified interface. There is a real-world precedent that this approach works. For example, in Germany, a number of banks banded together and negotiated with Google to deliver something specific that involved exposing specific processes that wouldn’t have been possible on a 1:1 negotiation.   43:00 - 44:30 | Closing and thank you Watch a full recording of the event here:  

Categories:Session Recording

Women in Cloud: Meet Clair Hur

Please introduce yourself: My name is Clair and I’m a Senior Program Manager at Vimeo. I work with C-suite, multi-country product leads, and PMO managers to produce meaningful organizational change. I also deliver business critical initiatives at an enterprise scale and my expertise is in digital transformation, process redesign, and revenue optimization. I currently live in Manhattan with my husband, and I’m originally from Korea. You have a diverse background from working in design to consulting, how did you find yourself in tech? When my father got third stage cancer, I was 17 and education was a luxury. It took away my childhood dream of becoming a lawyer, and I had to work 2 jobs to be the breadwinner of my home. When I was 19, I submitted a 1200-word article to the Korea Times' Thoughts for Times section. The Korea IT Times Editor in Chief took notice of my work and scouted me as a reporter while I was taking online University classes. I learned from the world’s tech leaders and served as a media partner to over 200 IT companies to promote their products and services online. I promised myself that once my baby sister graduated college, I’d pursue a Master’s program with my own savings, and it took me 10 years to reach that goal. From all the schools I applied to, Parsons School of Design offered me a merit-based scholarship, and I chose to study strategic design and management, allowing me to dive deep into different methods of design thinking and managing creative work. This time in my life came with a few different challenges, as I applied to 320 companies and revised my resume 221 times. However, each time I received a rejection letter, I’d dissect the job description and dedicate myself to self-improvement. New knowledge and certifications led to the project opportunities with Nike, Delonghi, and Toyota’s design and engineering teams. In 2018, PWC gave me an opportunity by the time I gained 6 certifications, including, The Wharton School Financial and Business Modeling, PMP, CSM, and Google Adwords. By the time I completed the Lean Six Sigma course, I was led to the tech industry, Vimeo.  How has Google Cloud made an impact on you? Google Cloud has always been my amplifier. In 2022 at Vimeo, the principal engineer of the hosting Ops team designed a new container solution with our Core Services and Video Platform team to cost-effectively store large video files at Vimeo. We selected Google to be our partner for this endeavor when we were using multiple regional storage solutions. Through the Google Cloud STS service, we migrated large legacy video files into a new bucket safely in less than 3 months. The principal engineers of Google partnered with our video platform, core services, and hosting ops teams to assess risks and proactively manage them. The success of this complex project, in partnership with the best teams of both parties, resulted in substantial cost savings. A shout out to Dave Stoner’s team at Google! Additionally, in 2005, I was a reporter at the Korea IT Times.  We had a competitive advantage for being the nation’s first English IT specialized online/offline journal. However, the business couldn’t sustain itself with new technological advances. When my paycheck fell behind, I suggested to the CEO to redesign our website to meet Google News requirements. At that time, we had to rebuild the entire website for our English content to syndicate to Google News. We did this for the first time in Korea, and what this meant was an increase in sponsorship by 200% and revenue by six folds. When our media partners exhibited at the international fairs, they could share the article link in the follow up email rather than distributing the paper kits. Google has always been a powerful tool in my life and has been a driving force to help solve critical issues.  What does being a leader mean to you?I think sometimes I struggle to define that myself. It used to be about “Am I doing enough for others? Am I dedicating enough time for them?” I thought those were the qualities of a leader. When I think about the term today, I believe it’s rooted in company growth. The challenge here is to be the force of nature as a leader that can empower others to reach their own destiny while also balancing the needs of a team. I think rather than always being the person who relies on facts, guidelines and analysis, I’m learning to embrace my natural feminine identity in the progress of striving for effective communication. When faced with a challenge or obstacle in life, how do you handle it? To be honest, being in the United States has really helped. Failures and obstacles are viewed as a part of the journey rather than a form of shame. However, in the culture I grew up in, mistakes were viewed harshly. As an immigrant from a different country, I struggle with  questioning myself and my expectations. When this happens, I turn to music or running. A recent hobby of mine has been writing TV show scripts, and I realized that writing helps me to look into the bad moments of a day from a bird’s eye view. It’s very therapeutic and helps me to understand that whatever is happening is just a part of season one.  If you could go back and give your younger self advice, what would that be?I would tell myself that when there is a will, there's a path. When I was younger, I always had a will but keeping faith was a challenge. Life felt giant, and everyday felt like I was never excellent enough to become successful, when really, I didn’t have a definition of success. I’d tell myself to create a vision, get credentials, and never stop learning. In my case, every time I was about to give up, someone always found me and led me closer to my ambition, and they took notice of  my track record dedicated to continuous improvement. I believe you shouldn’t stop being an eternal student. Continuously seek wisdom through knowledge, and have faith that the perfect award awaits you.  How would you like to see organizations celebrate female talent?I was recently very inspired by an event titled “I Am Remarkable.” Culturally, we grow up hearing that modesty is the best virtue. Especially when you are a woman, the better job security is there when we nail the back scene supporter role. It was an emotional event for me to witness because these amazing women celebrated their wins from small to big, and were being vulnerable while also empowering each other. It made me want to create more time and space to participate in these events to nurture my own confidence so that I can be more comfortable in my own skin. The remarkable women were building a strong community by recognizing greatness in others, and I'd love to belong to more communities like this to inspire meaningful changes in the world.  What is your favorite aspect of working with other women?Women together are like “stars aligned” in my perception. I once belonged to a certain type of culture where men with a higher title would serve the role of a “hero” of a team. We have great female leaders that joined Vimeo from Google and Amazon for our key product areas. Our presence helped mixed groups at Vimeo to shine brighter together. Sometimes I imagine us looking like a Saggitarius together, other days like an Aquarius––here when the stars are aligned, we constantly ask each other what can be done by the work function or at the leadership level to remove impediments and overcome any limitations for the simple mission: enable the power of video. We bring balanced perceptions, empowerment, and strong will to accomplish our mission together.    Who are your role models? Currently, the CEO of Vimeo, Anjali Sud, and CFO Gillian Munson have deeply inspired me. I’ve never seen such strong leaders who empower us with smart management who are also furiously vulnerable with us and display humility. This is the first time in my career where I am working for or with a female C-Suite. Recently, when Anjali spoke in our Town Hall that times like this define who we truly are and how together we can become stronger, I dearly missed my Japanese grandmother. She was devoted and positive throughout all crises, including post-war family loss and rebuilding. She has been a true role model in my heart.  For young women going into the tech space, what advice would you give them?First, you need to find and understand your interest, then connect it to tech areas where you could make an impact. I’d recommend researching what you have to accomplish in terms of credentials to get into that market, and I’d also narrow down the search to areas that you’d be interested in learning more about as well. There are many online courses available that will provide you with a glimpse of University professors teaching different topics that will help you strengthen that interest. Once you’ve narrowed it down, take a look at the job descriptions in that field, because it is like a cheat sheet for where you want to go! Dissect the requirements and see which ones you can tackle currently and map out the ones that you can achieve in the future. There are small, tactful hints you can catch in job descriptions that are quite actionable now and will make you feel like you’re working towards your end goal. Dream on! Want to read similar articles? Check out these other interviews with women in Cloud: Women in Cloud: Meet Shobana Shankar

Categories:Careers in CloudNetworkingCloud OperationsGoogle Cloud PartnersInterview

How the Cloud is Driving Innovation in the Financial Services Industry

Innovation is a natural value of cloud technology. The cloud itself is an emerging, growing technology, and cloud nativity is increasingly becoming the norm for younger and more forward-thinking companies. This makes the cloud an intuitive fit for companies building emerging solutions and working in growing industries, but innovation happens everywhere, even in some of the biggest and most varied industries on the market––including the market itself. When it comes to innovation in the financial services industry, there are no opportunities available like those offered by the cloud.In some ways, innovation in the financial services industry occurs naturally. Every company is reliant to some extent on the financial services industry, and probably partnering with multiple financial services companies to manage its payroll, its benefits enrollments, and its investments. Innovation across the business universe will inevitably occur in step with innovation specific to financial services. With this innovation essentially a foregone conclusion for the industry, established advantages of cloud adoption like scalability, speed of operations, cost reduction, and security should be top of mind for financial services companies.At C2C Global, a worldwide online community of Google Cloud users where people work together to solve problems and build new solutions, we’ve seen financial services organizations share that a huge opportunity for migrating to the cloud for their business is better insights from data analytics. Legacy organizations hoping to get the necessary value out of their increasingly massive datasets will struggle to process their analytics using on-prem models. Using AI and ML to augment these insights will be even harder without access to the training available to AI apps and ML models built on the cloud, where more of these models are available, as well as more computing and processing power.One major financial services provider just opted to migrate to Google Cloud: banking giant Wells Fargo. The bank began its migration recently, announcing the partnership with Google Cloud in 2021, but it’s already made big plans, including a customer experience engine using customer metadata to build predictive models that proactively offer personalized suggestions. To prime for the migration, Wells Fargo created sandbox environments for developers to build apps and tools on the cloud. The speed with which the teams were able to build the infrastructure for the customer experience engine on the cloud as opposed to on-prem was immediately apparent. The engine also has access to Google Cloud’s vast network of AI and ML data models, which are trained on trillions of petabytes of data.Many legacy banks may be hesitant to migrate to Google Cloud, or to the cloud at all, due to the inertia processes experience after years on an on-prem architecture. However, migration is not only possible; with the right support, it’s a smooth and comfortable process. Google Cloud offers a service called Cloud Customer Care that makes migration manageable and minimizes lift for companies looking to modernize. Data Capital Management (DCM), an innovative financial services company using automation to make the investment process more accessible to consumers, used Cloud Customer Care to manage a complex migration to Google Cloud. The data and computing power required to maintain DCM’s AI models made the migration essential. Cloud Customer Care made it easy.Many of the most exciting innovations in the financial services space are coming from cloud-first retail banking companies. The FinTech space is exploding now that electronic payment is emerging as the default mode of payment for organizations and individuals alike and alternative financial models like cryptocurrency and other forms of decentralized finance are going mainstream. Other innovations like embedded finance and Banking-as-a-Service (BaaS) show great potential for growth in the near term. Much of this innovation is being accelerated by the growing prevalence of remote work. Just like innovation in financial services is dependent on the business ecosystem as a whole, FinTech continues to evolve as more and more companies adopt it to modernize.More than just work has gone remote since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many transactions that individuals and businesses once conducted exclusively face-to-face have now become possible online, from takeout orders to doctors’ appointments. Self-service models for banking are emerging as well, quickly and effectively enough that in the coming years, negotiating a mortgage and closing on a house virtually might become as simple as ordering a new pair of shoes online.These are just a few of the innovation use cases available to financial services organizations hoping to modernize on the cloud. Each, though, demonstrates the clear advantages of cloud adoption for organizations in the industry and beyond. For businesses, scalability, computing power and storage capacity, and speed and cost reduction will make for advantages too attractive to pass up. For individuals, innovation in financial services will mean autonomy, control, and a world of resources at their fingertips. We can afford to migrate. We can’t afford to wait. Extra Credit:  

Categories:Industry SolutionsFinancial Services