Tech Chat

What's Hot At Coquina

Coquina Systems to Deliver Hitachi Vantara Midrange Storage Services

Coquina Systems has a long history with Hitachi Data Systems and now Hitachi Vantara. The company is pleased to provide professional services specifically for Hitachi Vantara midrange storage solutions for Hitachi Vantara partners. This fills a need for Hitachi Vantara as the company is looking to accelerate adoption for this class of storage for its channel. Coquina Systems will provide certified engineers for design, integration, and implementation services for Hitachi Vantara partners to deliver to their clients.

Our goal at Coquina Systems is to not only support but also help increase Hitachi Vantara partners’ midrange solution sales by providing the best customer experience with services that are easy to sell and deliver. The team is excited to partner with Hitachi by delivering expertise in the field on behalf of Hitachi’s partner community.

Coquina Systems will bring immediate value to partners with quick turnaround times for initial statements of work and offer the ability to white label services as the partners’ own. Partners will benefit from potential enhanced margin opportunities when working directly with Coquina Systems. Coquina already employs a significant bench of Hitachi Vantara-certified consultants with extensive experience in supporting midrange solutions, including the Hitachi Vantara Virtual Storage Platform (VSP) E-series portfolio.

Coquina Systems has been partnering with VION’s services organization with skilled professional services resources for several years. Jeff Henry, president of VION had this to say about Coquina and, specifically, their Hitachi-certified resources, “We are confident in all the services provided by Coquina Systems because they are highly skilled and certified. Their breadth of expertise has broadened our services capabilities and this partnership has substantially increased our services revenue. We look forward to expanding our partnership to include services for the new Hitachi midrange platform.”

Ask us about our Hitachi Vantara services with a strong focus on midrange solutions, but also including enterprise storage, data analytics and IoT services.

Coquina Systems Earns VMware Master Services Competency

Coquina Systems continues to invest in our professional services teams to support the solution provider community. Case in point, our VMware team has just surpassed an important milestone by achieving VMware Master Services Competency in Data Center Virtualization (DCV).

Coquina Systems will soon earn Master Services Competency in the remaining VMware designations, including Cloud Management Automation, Network Virtualization and Digital Workspace focused on VMware WorkspaceONE and VMware Horizon environments. Our team prioritizes offering the leading VMware technologies that require expert skills to deploy and manage VMware environments today.

The Coquina Systems team has over 200 certifications across the entire spectrum of VMware technologies. These certifications allow our partners the ability to assure customers that their VMware services are delivered by a team with the highest product solutions and services certifications in the industry.

Each Master Services Competency listed below requires advanced technical certifications and proof of high-level service capability and expertise validated by customers.

• Data Center Virtualization – expertise in VMware vSphere® environments and real-world environment solutions and services delivery. Achieving this competency validates a deep understanding of data center virtualization design principles and methodologies and leverages best practices that provide a scalable and reliable virtualization platform.

• Cloud Management and Automation – expertise in VMware cloud management and automation solutions and service delivery. Achieving this competency validates a deep understanding of cloud management design principles and methodologies and leverages best practices that provide a scalable and reliable platform.

• Digital Workspace – expertise in VMware WorkspaceONE and VMware Horizon environments and services delivery. Achieving this competency validates a deep technical understanding and ability to architect, design and deliver professional services projects related to desktop virtualization, mobile device management, unified endpoint management, app identify and access management.

• Network Virtualization – expertise in the VMware NSX environment and services delivery. NSX delivers a unique networking model that forms the foundation of the Software Defined Data Center (SDDC). Achieving this competency validates the ability to deploy and optimize NSX environments, as well as possession of the knowledge and skills to leverage best practices for providing scalable and reliable virtualized networks.

• VMware Cloud on AWS – expertise in the delivery of hybrid cloud solutions based on VMware Cloud on AWS. Achieving this competency validates the capability to deploy integrated cloud solutions that deliver on-demand services enabling customers to run applications across a VMware Cloud Infrastructure environment with access to a broad range of AWS services.

• Cloud Native (available in Spring 2020) – expertise to set up, run and manage VMware Modern Application solutions. Achieving this competency validates a deep understanding of Kubernetes administration core concepts and proficiency in networking, security and application lifecycle management ensuring continuous delivery of applications on Kubernetes-based platforms.

These VMware competencies demonstrate Coquina Systems’ commitment to helping organizations accelerate their digital transformation by leveraging their validated services delivery capabilities via solution partners around advanced VMware technologies.

How can we help you serve your clients today? 

Why Penetration Testing is Important Amid New Cybersecurity Challenges

In matters of business, it is our natural inclination to ask, “What’s the ROI going to be?” But when we really look at a cybersecurity challenge as an example, taking a specific action such as penetration testing, the issue becomes less about ROI, and more about the avoidance of significant and unplanned costs as well as potential lost credibility. Although penetration tests do not encompass all preventative cyber-crime measures, they should be a routine protection tool in your arsenal.

If you aren’t proactively reinforcing your cyber-security measures, it’s not a matter of if, but when your business will fall victim to an attack from cybercriminals.

There are plenty of articles justifying protecting your business:

·         We’re just halfway through the year, and 2020 is on track to set a new data breach record according to Security Boulevard.

·         State of all data breaches as of June 2020 as reported by Selfkey: The first quarter of 2020 has been one of the worst in data breach history with over 8 billion records exposed.

·         IBM looked at breaches across more than 500 organizations and pegged the average financial impact to the affected enterprise — from fines to lost worker hours — at $3.92 million

·         According to Verizon Enterprise, 61 percent of data breach victims are businesses with less than 1,000 employees. Further, Cybersecurity Ventures reports that a business falls victim to a ransomware attack every 40 seconds—something it predicts will rise to every 14 seconds by the end of 2020.

·         Accenture put together its own study of the costs of various types of cyberattacks with interesting results. Malware rates as the most expensive, with an attack costing victims up to $2.6 million. Perhaps more surprising, given its prominence in the news, ransomware came in close to the bottom of the list, with each attack costing “only” $646,000 on average.

Many professionals recommend performing penetration tests annually; however, everyone should realize it’s more about specific events or impacts to your systems that dictate when a penetration test is needed, including these types of scenarios:

  • After any security related changes or patches   
  • Network infrastructure changes
  • End-user policy modifications
  • New applications or significant application changes      

According to Marsh and Microsoft some technologies may add new risks if they have not been built in accordance with optimal security standards. Organizations are focusing more on technology and prevention than on prioritizing the time, resources, and activities needed to build cyber resilience.

Despite embracing technology and digital innovation, organizations have considerable uncertainty about the degree of cyber risk such new technologies bring.

Essentially any significant changes to your environment or at least once a year—whichever occurs first—is when you should consider conducting:

  • Penetration testing
  • Reinforcing cybersecurity policies
  • Evaluating or updating your cyber incident response plan
  • Cyber threat assessment and preparation

Coquina Systems has certified professionals that help our solution provider partners conduct these types of services for their clients.

Increased Importance and Demand for Cyber Risk and Security Services

By the end of 2020, security services are expected to account for 50% of cybersecurity budgets according to Gartner’s cyber security mid-year snapshot report.  This combined with the fact that cybersecurity has become even more important with the massive growth in digital business and the massive shift to remote work, makes it a high priority for our partners. From assessments to health checks, Coquina Systems has an extensive network of credentialed professionals to evaluate the risk and security readiness of our partners’ clients.

Compliance and Risk Readiness Assessments

Assessing risk and evaluating how prepared an organization will be in the event of an attack is paramount. Our teams work with key stakeholders to conduct workshops, inventory systems, policies, procedures and controls including existing security capabilities, data protection capabilities and access controls to make recommendations and prepare for security solution implementations.

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

Cyber Resiliency and Remote Access Assessments

Minimize the business impact of cyber-attack by recovering quickly with an orchestrated resilience approach. Our cyber resiliency services look at the immediate temporary restoration of critical cyber functions so that a business can survive an attack, breach or disaster. Security-certified professionals identify security and compliance requirements and desired business outcomes in conjunction with our partners while serving their clients. Other key deliverables include risk assessments, regulatory requirement management, business capability mapping, role-based access control (RBAC) and document role mapping as well as a host of remote work/access policy reviews and assessments.

Enterprise Security Health Check

In order to identify whether an enterprise is at risk of attack from the outside, as well as identify internal infrastructure risks from an insider threat, a series of comprehensive technical security analyses as well as a policy and configuration reviews must be performed to measure, document, and validate an enterprise’s risk management strategy. Coquina Systems brings its partners a comprehensive set of health check services, including the review of enterprise security architecture and existing artifacts, key stakeholders roles and qualifications, definition, alignment and harmonization across functions. Some key deliverables include security assessment reports with scoring, enterprise control matrices, Plan of Action and Milestones (POAM), timelines, and roadmaps.

Endpoint Security and Malware Readiness

Endpoint protection helps businesses keep critical systems, intellectual property, customer data, employees, and guests safe from ransomware, phishing, malware, and other cyberattacks. Our readiness services include helping enterprises understand preparedness for detection and action if an end-point is infected or compromised as well as developing a comprehensive plan to protect systems against an exfiltration, malware threat and to maintain business continuity.

We offer services that are in high demand by our solution providers and their clients. Cyber risk and security are among many IT services we offer to help drive their success. Check out our entire blog series on these top services from Coquina Systems.

Digital Business Growth Fuels the Need for Networking and Wireless Services

Networking and wireless implementations have become even more important with the continued growth in digital business and the massive shift to remote work. From assessments to deployments and migration, Coquina Systems has an extensive network of credentialed professionals to deliver successful networking and wireless services to the clients of our solution provider partners.

IDC estimates there will be 48.9 billion connected devices in use around the world by 2023 and the 2018 Cisco Complete VNI Forecast predicts that the average amount of data consumed across a network will be almost 60 GB per personal computer per month. With this rapid growth in digital business fueling the need for networked innovations, networking services are in higher demand than ever.

Managed Services

Coquina Systems offers our solution partners a range of managed services from basic 7/24 monitoring and alerts to full management, including change management, performance and capacity services. Why would an enterprise want networking as a service? Managed services provide proactive maintenance, enhanced security, always optimized systems and increased levels of uptime to name a few of the benefits.

In addition, 24/7 management ensures an organization is taking the appropriate steps to protect its network with firmware and software updates that positively impact performance and monitoring capacity. Our managed service helps improve how well an organization is prepared to detect and act if a network component is impacting the enterprise.

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

Wireless Assessment

A wireless assessment is necessary to uncover specific configurations or components that are affecting overall performance an enterprise’s system and will provide insight into what is required to remediate challenges and improve system health. Our team conducts wireless assessments to determine the number of WAP’s, range and deployment architecture. Our services ensure that solution providers get a holistic picture of their clients’ networks.

Deployment and Migration

Deployment and migration services cover a wide range of technologies, including networking, wireless and firewall solutions. Our highly certified teams start with assessment and planning services that identify security and compliance requirements, assess and develop access policies as well as set expectations for business outcomes. This aids in successful deployments and migrations. Other key components include reviewing architecture and existing artifacts and planning for migration from source to target environments. Our team delivers key assets to drive to successful outcomes: Some valuable deliverables provided include new and updated topology maps and Plan of Action and Milestones (POAM) for migrations.

We offer services that are in high demand by our solution providers and their clients. Networking and wireless services are among many IT services we offer to help drive their success. Check out our entire blog series on these top services from Coquina Systems.

Migrate Data with Confidence by Leveraging Key Services

We know data migration is a constant challenge for organizations of all sizes. Implementing a services strategy helps minimize the risks associated with migrating a client’s data and meet the goal of enhancing a company’s performance and competitiveness. Coquina Systems provides a full suite of services for our solution provider partners to confidently sell and deliver comprehensive data migration projects to their clients.

Technology Refresh

There are many reasons for modernizing technology, including replacing outdated systems and applications, increasing data security protection, managing data privacy and protection, and now – more than ever – managing new remote work scenarios. Managing the data during a tech refresh should be the top priority. The Coquina Systems team is highly qualified and certified in key processes and technologies that yield a successful data migration, including large-scale automation as well as inventory of systems, policies, procedures and controls. We have our own intellectual property in Service Orchestrator that manages the largest migrations ensuring projects finish on time.

Data Center Consolidation

We are all aware that consolidating data center facilities offers the ability to enhance operations, improve redundancy and flexibility, deliver higher availability and better use of IT assets. Again, the key to success is delivering a suite of services that ensures a smooth consolidation and cost control.

Our team delivers a host of these services, including facility cost assessment and planning, actual move and migration services and service management as well as provisioning, performance and capacity out-tasking services.

Cloud

Cloud has changed our lives. Worldwide spending on public cloud services and infrastructure is forecasted by Gartner to grow to nearly $500 billion in 2023. As a result, all IT projects must include a sound cloud strategy. Coquina Systems consultants help our partners ensure their clients are avoiding wasting IT assets by developing and executing a cloud strategy that furthers their business goals. Strategies and services we offer include development and review of application usage profiles, stakeholder participation, cloud cost models and alternatives, migration plans and cloud management platform implementation to name a few.

Application Migration

Because applications are typically built to run on particular operating systems in specific network architectures or developed for a single cloud platform, moving an application to a new environment can pose a number of challenges. Our solution provider partners rely on us to develop a comprehensive plan to migrate data to SaaS or other new computing environments, including building a plan for upgrading applications or implementing like-for-like or competitive migrations.

Also according to Gartner, “83% of data migration projects either fail or exceed their budgets and schedules.” Let Coquina Systems increase your chances of success and improved return on investment by leveraging our data migration services.

Splunk Services Drive Security and So Much More

Splunk services are one of the top requests we get at Coquina Systems. As a reminder, our company serves solution providers across the country with professional services to support a wide variety of their projects. Our team provides fast response times, exceptional quality and cost-effective delivery. We find providing proactive services for Splunk implementations – like the ones listed below – help solution provider partners determine total cost of ownership (TCO) and increase overall return on investment (ROI) for their customers.

Splunk has been named a “Leader” in Gartner’s 2020 Magic Quadrant (MQ) for Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) for the seventh year running. In the report, Splunk was recognized for the highest overall “Ability to Execute.”  Although product leadership is a great problem to have, it has created an overwhelming demand for qualified services providers that are knowledgeable deploying solutions across multiple domains.  Finding, training and retaining an internal team is often an overwhelming challenge for most organizations.  Wouldn’t it be great if there was a more convienent and cost-effective method to get quickly ramp up and reduce project risk while deploying these solutions?

Business Insight and Process Integration

We work with our solution providers to ensure their clients’ needs are fully vetted through workshop elaboration and collaboration. In a world where data is one of our most critical assets, Splunk’s SEIM deployments can be complex and costly in their data integration. As a result, they will often fall short of meeting their functional and organizational value if they are ill-conceived in the initial planning and architecture.  Our Splunk-certified professionals offer a host of insight and integration services that include proactive evaluation, design and concept planning workshops, data integration, custom report creation and business process engineering to help their customers effortlessly meet their operational goals.

Splunk Solution Deployment

Even according to Splunk, “the process of implementing a Splunk deployment requires that a series of decisions are made based on your goals. It also requires that you follow procedures described in numerous topics that are spread across a large body of documentation. The procedures that you implement vary according to the needs of your deployment. It can be difficult to determine the right set of procedures for your particular deployment needs, and then to locate all the procedures in the documentation.”

Our deployment services help make it easy for our partners to sell and deliver Splunk. Our professionals are well-versed in Security Essentials/SIEM/SOC, Splunk Machine Learning Toolkit, IT operations and business analytics, IoT and edge device monitoring as well as Kubernetes monitoring.

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

Splunk as a Service (SPaas)

Organizations that struggle finding value (lower risk, greater efficiencies, improved market shares and profits) from their data, are often limiting their Splunk investment as well.  And as effective as Coquina’s remote managed services have been in lowering the operational cost to improve a client’s TCO, it is our Splunk business insight and integration services that are driving value and improving ROI around existing investments that is often most helpful.

Other remote or onsite managed services we offer include architecture and planning, secure Splunk operations, remote monitoring and administration, and platform installation and configuration.

Project Assistance

Coquina Systems helps partners support their clients with quick-starter offerings that often lead to larger engagements, including short-term platform migration, technical staff augmentation and platform performance management.

Ask our experts more about how we can help simplify Splunk deployments to ensure success. Our Splunk-certified professionals are at the ready to help solution provider partners.

VMware Services are in High Demand

Welcome to the first of five blogs outlining Coquina Systems services that our solution provider partners indicate are in the highest demand by their clients. Coquina was founded to support our channel partners with a depth and breadth of services they typically don’t have the bench to provide on their own.

This first blog is dedicated to VMware. VMware recently released VCF (VMware Cloud Foundation) and demand for VCF services now rank among the top services requested by our channel partners. Coquina Systems is here for our partners to add the certified resources to their teams with white-labeled professional services.

Coquina Systems Expertise Increases Success

Coquina Systems has achieved VMware’s Master Services Competency with our large team of VMware Certified and VMware Certified Advanced Professionals. Our team holds more that 190 certifications in every VMware product group.  The two largest VMware services requests are for Hybrid/Multi Cloud and Digital Workspace Solutions – specifically, VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF), Horizon/Cloud VDI and Workspace One.

VMware Cloud Foundation Simplifies Cloud as a Destination and an IT Operating Model

It’s well documented that VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF) offers the broadest, most flexible solutions for private and hybrid cloud deployments. VCF is VMware’s unified SDDC platform for the private and public clouds. Our team of certified experts support VCF services on behalf of our solution provider partners to architect, deploy, automate and operate on-premise, hybrid and multi-cloud environments.

Infrastructure Automation and Modernization Enables Agile Delivery

Coquina Systems professionals deliver VMware vRealize Automation to accelerate the delivery and ongoing management of personalized, business-relevant infrastructure and/or application. Standardized service blueprints combined with automated delivery assures consistency and reliability of our delivered resources. Full lifecycle management ensures infrastructure and applications are maintained at a peak operating efficiency. VMware products we support for our partners include: vRealize Operations (vRO), vRealize Automation (vRA), Tanzu and Kubernetes.

Upgrade to New Technology

VMware Software Defined Data Center provides ease and flexibility to adopt new compute paradigms. This enables a clear path to the cloud with new levels of orchestration, security and automation not available before in the IT industry. New technologies, including Tanzu, automate container cluster management to enable devops teams to provide constant integration and constant delivery functionality (CI/CD). Coquina Systems enables our solution partners to offer services that support these type of automation and upgrade initiatives.

Administration and Management

Our team performs a variety of services to help our partners’ customers manage their budgets by controlling costs. Partners can sell and deliver services that help a client be proactive to save money and prevent headaches down the road. Specific to VMware solutions, Coquina Systems offers health checks, vSphere administration, performance monitoring, incident management and system security.

Don’t take our word for it. We are happy to put you in touch with any of the solution provider partners we work with to let you know how our VMware-certified professionals performed with their clients. Our services make your jobs easier with a reliable off-payroll resource to serve the needs of your customers.

How to Capitalize on What’s Hot in IT Services

I’m excited to bring you a five-part blog series with short articles about specific IT services that are hot in the technology space today. These five services are in high demand according to our solution provider partners and what they are seeing in the market. Coquina Systems delivers services professionals with the highest credentials — including hundreds of vendor certifications — to support our partners’ requirements in these key categories and beyond.

VMware Services

Services in high demand to support both Cloud Foundation and on-premise VMware implementations include technology upgrades, hybrid cloud services, cost management administration and application modernization to name a few. Coquina Systems is proud to have a bench of VMware-certified Master Consultants in Cloud Foundation to provide all key VMware services that are being requested by your clients.

Splunk TCO and ROI Services

Splunk is everywhere – it’s used by 92 of Fortune 100 companies! Collaboration with Coquina System’s industry experts can help maximize any client’s investment in Splunk through insightful and data driven process, customized to their business. We offer support for a variety of Splunk pre-built solutions like Splunk SE, SEIM, and other market leading solutions. Learn more in our upcoming blog about Splunk.

Data Migration Services

“83% of data migration projects either fail or exceed their budgets and schedules,” according to Gartner. We all know data migration is a constant challenge for organizations of all sizes. Implementing a services strategy helps minimize the risks associated with migrating a client’s data. We provide a full suite of services from technology refresh to data center consolidation to cloud migrations, including expertise in Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud using our own Service Orchestrator software IP to track/manage/report/track the projects progress.

Networking and Wireless Services

Networking and wireless implementations have become even more important with the massive shift to remote work. From assessments to deployments and migration, Coquina Systems has an extensive network of credentialed professionals to deliver successful networking and wireless services. Our offering also includes a range of managed services from basic 7×24 monitoring and alerts to change management, performance and capacity services.

 Cyber Risk and Security Services

Security and compliance start with prevention. Coquina Systems offers a variety of up-front assessments to determine overall risk and make recommendations for robust security implementations, including compliance and risk readiness along with endpoint security, penetration testing and malware readiness assessments. In addition, we offer cyber resiliency services to look at the immediate temporary restoration of critical cyber functions so that a business can survive an attack, breach or disaster.

To learn more about how you can take advantage of these high-demand technology services that will help increase revenue, margins and stickiness with your customers, check out our upcoming five-part blog series detailing each of these services.

The Top Three: Services in Highest Demand

There is good news! Amid the slowing economy and trade challenges we are currently experiencing, in a mid-February report, IDC predicts worldwide spending on information and communications technology (ICT) will be $4.3 trillion in 2020, an increase of 3.6% over 2019. Much of this includes IT services along with hardware and software expenditures with over half being spent in the commercial and public sector spaces.

At Coquina Systems, we work with solution providers every day who are sharing the needs of their enterprise and mid-sized customers. We gain key insights across geographic and vertical markets based on the wide range of partners we work with across the country. Our data shows the top services being requested as organizations continue to embark on their digital transformation journeys.

The author of the IDC report, Serena Da Rold goes on to say, “On the upside, our surveys indicate a strong focus on customer experience and on creating innovative products and services driving new ICT investments. Companies and organizations across industries are shifting gears in their digital transformation process, investing in cloud, mobility, the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, robotics, and increasingly in DevOps and edge computing, to transform their business processes.”

All of this new innovation requires three key services that build the foundation of a company’s infrastructure – whether on premise or in the cloud. These are the top three areas we are seeing a surge in requests for professional services.

Networking and Wireless

Organizations are looking for strategic direction and to increase efficiencies with their networking and wireless technologies. Services that include assessment, deployment, migration and even managed services for networking solutions are key to moving forward successfully.

Data Migration Services

As we all continue to migrate to remote working scenarios and move data to the cloud, organizations still require technology refresh services, data center consolidation, and – of course – cloud and application migration. The complexity of these activities is increasing, so an efficient and effective data migration plan is paramount.

Cyber Risk and Security Services

Security has always been a top priority for enterprises; however, the pandemic has heightened the need for security to new levels. Online threats have risen by as much as six-times their usual levels over the past four weeks as the COVID-19 pandemic provides new ballast for cyber-attacks, according to Cloudflare. As a result, services like cyber resiliency and remote access assessments, enterprise security health checks, compliance and risk readiness assessments, and endpoint security and malware readiness are in high demand. 

What services are you seeing customers request? What services are you delivering that are helping you gain a competitive advantage today? We’d love to hear from you at info@coquinasystems.com.