TL; DR: With roots dating back more than 25 years, Codero is a tried-and-true hosting provider that perpetually explores and innovates with emerging technologies. Laser-focused on optimization and user experience, the company delivers seamless and customizable transitions to cloud or hybrid infrastructure that accommodates both future business goals and existing legacy systems. Chief Revenue Officer Ric Riddle gave us his take on how Codero has evolved alongside the cloud hosting industry and the opportunities serverless and cloud computing present for business and IT acceleration.
Instead of talking about cloud hosting opportunities in terms of edge computing and the Internet of Things, Ric Riddle prefers to take a broader view of how migrating to the modern, optimized infrastructure impacts the larger business ecosystem.
“IT is no longer a function that lives in the dark rooms or basement or bowels of an organization,” he said. “The cloud represents an entire business and culture transformation.”
In addition to the changing hardware configurations, cloud computing represents a tectonic shift in the business landscape where organizations of all sizes can capitalize and grow with modern hosting solutions. Industry veteran Codero enables customers to take the plunge by tailoring highly customized and supported technologies around specific business objectives and applications.
“It’s no longer just the large enterprise companies who have a lot of resources and money moving to the cloud,” he said. “Even early-stage companies have embraced the culture change that prioritizes user experience. Small companies can now still focus on their business with the available cloud resources and still be able to expand and try new things.”
Ric, Codero’s Chief Resource Officer, equated the energy and innovation surrounding the cloud hosting revolution to the momentum and excitement created by the rash of technology titans starting in an entrepreneur’s garage or bedroom.
“They can attract talent, nurture small teams, and develop skills as they build out all these new innovations as a small company,” he said. “The innovation and the role of IT accelerates the speed at which the company transforms. IT now has a pretty important seat at the table. When businesses are talking about what’s next, one of the first groups they talk to now is IT.”
Providing Multiple Routes to Cloud Performance and Success
Codero originally launched as Aplus.net in 1992 as a computer reseller shop and, eventually, an internet service provider. As more and more people and organizations wanted to get online, the company added shared hosting — then dedicated servers, then web design, then domain name registrations. Codero shed some services and rebranded in 2009, electing to concentrate on what Ric called the crown jewels of dedicated and managed servers.
“When the competitive winds of cloud hosting began, Codero stood up its own private cloud,” Ric said.
Noticing that other major private cloud providers, including Rackspace, HP, and Cisco, were shuttering their private clouds in favor of reselling public cloud solutions from the likes of Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud, Codero became a certified provider of AWS and Azure. The company announced platform-agnostic cloud implementations on its hybrid multi-cloud architecture in January 2018.
“The big movement afoot is that more and more companies are moving to the cloud,” Ric said. “Whether they’re doing so gracefully, logically, strategically, or economically is something left for companies like us to help them figure out.”
According to Ric, many organizations — particularly small and medium businesses — moved to the cloud too soon. Without fully understanding the platform’s prospective impacts on their organization, those companies quickly got overwhelmed and lost focus.
“It takes a company like Codero, which has been there and done that,” he said. “We understand the cloud and how to connect back to legacy investments so the cloud is a lean, optimized experience.”
BEAT Assessments Optimize Customers’ Onboarding Experience
Internally, Codero employees perform what they call BEAT Assessments when meeting with new customers and preparing the cloud migration:
“We want to understand the heartbeat of our customers and what they’re trying to do,” Ric said. “The key to success is having a very good knowledge of the original or legacy equipment and processes and being able to build that into an onboarding process. We obsess over what’s already there and where they want to be.”
- B stands for business drivers. Why does the customer want to make the move to the cloud? How knowledgeable are they about how the cloud can realistically support their goals?
- E stands for the economic considerations. Are all systems moving to the cloud or just some? Does the customer understand the total cost of ownership as well as the return on investment?
- A stands for applications. Should the customer reengineer some legacy processes to take more advantage of cloud services? How do the current and cloud applications affect the company’s compliance status?
- T stands for technology. Does the customer fully understand how their cloud infrastructure and applications operate? Was the customer matched with exactly the right systems and configurations to maximize the cloud’s opportunities?
Throughout the conversation with customers, Ric said Codero brings unbiased, platform-agnostic opinions to the interactions.
“We look at their existing infrastructure and their existing applications and identify the best services for their move to the cloud,” he said. “We make sure to cover scalability and architectural issues, that their applications and server processes are complete, that databases can scale and make transactions, and more. There are so many critical applications, and if there’s some legacy investments or infrastructure that makes the most sense to leave in place, we’ll help them do that.”
Codero’s High-Touch Support Ensures Efficient Cloud Consumption
Unlike many of its competitors, Codero’s job isn’t done once a customer has migrated to the cloud. Because cloud platforms’ monthly charges are based on the consumption of computing resources, Ric said that Codero will continue to help customers optimize their applications and reduce costs.
“We really partner with our customers, and not just to understand where they are and where they need to go,” he said. “Once they’re there, we lean in with them and proactively optimize the new world they’re in. It’s a smooth, secure, and compliant implementation and migration, but it’s got to be a high-touch process throughout the journey.”
That support and customer relationship is critical to Codero, as Ric said the company doesn’t have to define success as being the cheapest or the most expensive — or even the best.
“We just have to be remarkable with our customers and help them be remarkable themselves,” he said.
That frequently includes customers being able to communicate with the same support agent for several years, hopping on frequent phone calls, or even helping a customer consult with Codero’s chief networking officer.
“We bring the best and the brightest for our customers,” Ric said. “You can’t get folks like Amazon on the phone. Our customers like that small company feel, but we’re providing incredibly gifted and talented people who take a lot of pride in our customers being successful.”
Reaching the Horizon of Cognitive and Serverless Computing
Codero is already keeping an eye out for the emerging technologies that will impact cloud services and capabilities. According to Ric, cognitive computing (also known as artificial intelligence and machine learning) represent major cloud drivers — particularly when it comes to data collection and processing.
“It’s growing faster than our ability to really understand it,” he said, adding that the increased pressure for businesses to move with agility and scalability in the cloud supports larger and larger opportunities for serverless computing. With developers no longer needed to worry about provisioning or managing servers, they can focus on their company’s core products and services.
“Once that begins to be delivered on the cloud, then there are all these new opportunities and advantages for organizations. We’re going to see more and more businesses take advantage of that.”
Gartner continues to track and predict exponential growth in various cloud services — and the research and advisory firm estimated revenues would double from $153 billion in 2017 to upward of $300 million by 2021.
As cloud adoption grows, Ric said organizations no longer need to question whether they should migrate to the cloud; the emphasis should instead be focused on identifying the best way to make the move and how to continue to optimize their environment.
“It’s no longer a question of when, it’s a question of how and how do you stay competitive,” Ric said. “It seems that just about every company today is using the cloud in some pocket of their business.”