Pacing ahead to conquer the next-gen technology & drive business growth
Table of Contents
What is Containers, and why are they called the transport unit for software ?
Containerization is a methodology that manifests the “write once, run anywhere” approach. It's about encapsulating the software code and all its dependencies into a unique package, which can run uniformly and consistently on any infrastructure. In other word, containers are self-contained, standardized units for software that simplify the transport and installation of application data. The container accommodates everything an application needs to be able to run. This enormously simplifies the development, transport, and deployment of software.
As containerized apps can be readily delivered to users in a digital workspace across multiple platforms, it represents a broad spectrum of distinctive benefits, especially for the organizations in the BFSI sector. From superior agility and consistency during software development to easier cost controls and scalability during the deployment, containerization can be the pragmatic choice for modern banking and financial companies aiming for faster time to market, and quick results.
Need for Containerization
Financial institutions around the world, especially in India, have discovered the hard way that their legacy core banking systems are vulnerable to unpredictable threats, like that of the pandemic. In order to make their core systems more resilient and flexible, banks are looking towards open-source Kubernetes computing and its containerization technology, which provide critical advantages in terms of agility and speed.
The container architecture can improve application reliability while reducing the traditional complexities of a monolithic architecture. Through its modular approach, containerization offers financial companies the much-required flexibility to scale horizontally across their entire back-end infrastructure. Many companies in the BFSI sector are therefore choosing containerized infrastructure to restructure their processes and technologies as they look to achieve their goals in terms of speed, scalability, and security.
For instance a recent implementation by NSEIT for a leading bank demonstrates the digitization of the auction ecosystem performed to increase scale, performance, and security built using containerization. The responsive and scalable solution with improved speed and maintainability addressed the core issues that many organizations in the BFSI sector in India are currently facing due to the ballooning transaction volumes.
The bloom and boom
Containers have become immensely popular because of the numerous benefits they offer in terms of development and management of the system. According to stats by Gartner, it is predicted that 70% of the organizations will be running more than three containerized applications in production by 2023. Also, a study conducted by IBM revealed that 59% of organizations who adopted container development improved application quality and reduced defects, while 57% reduced application downtime and costs.
Some of the latest containerization trends include:
AIOps or Artificial Intelligence Operations : It helps in analyzing the causes for slow-downs or outages by providing an in-depth visibility across all environments
Service Mesh Security : It acts as an abstract layer for providing seamless service-to-service communication and managing the network traffic
SecOps : It is all about optimizing communication and collaboration between the security and IT operation teams to enhance business agility while reducing risks through consolidation of automation
Containerized apps are cloud-ready
As more and more companies also use cloud solutions, containers have become more important in recent years, because the new hosting options also contribute to an increasingly heterogeneous IT. The result is often a mixture of local applications and applications that operate on hybrid, public or private clouds. Container solutions make it possible to provide software quickly and flexibly across heterogeneous and distributed environments including the cloud and, if necessary, to move to another infrastructure. This container-driven portability in a hybrid cloud architecture enables the multi-directional movement of workloads, along with some key advantages that include :
Stress-free configuration and deployment : The growing ecosystem of tools supporting automatic container builds allows quick deployment across machines, while the configuration of microservices architecture as a set of containers is quick and easy
Exceptional scalability and flexibility : The built-in versioning and component re-usability provide improved flexibility, while allowing only the desired functions to be scaled without impacting the entire application
Improved efficiency and productivity : Spinning up a web server within a container is quite simple and there’s no need to run it directly on the host. Containers can also be run within VMs, which improves hardware utilization
Containerization’s Impact on BSFIs
While container technology has taken the IT industry by storm, it is also attracted the interest of BFSI organizations who have now started considering themselves as technology companies with a banking license. The IDC’s Enterprise Infrastructure Market Pulse 2Q19 survey in 2019 revealed that the top drivers for interest in container technologies were new initiatives in big data, machine learning, and artificial intelligence, all of which demand massive scalability, security and flexibility. This means that business models and business processes can be digitized faster and meet the requirements of IT for reliable, scalable applications, which can be updated faster, ultimately leading to a better customer experience.
As per a recent report published by Market Research Future – globally, the application container market is expected to grow from USD 0.89 billion in 2017 to USD 4.42 billion by 2023 at a CAGR of 31.1% during the forecasted period. BFSI is topping the verticals chart in the early adoption of this technology. Reason cited are growing need among businesses to increase the agility and time to market and growing demand for microservice architecture.
Major financial enterprises in the course of their digital transformation journey are now looking ahead to leverage the benefits of container technology and hybrid cloud, which would not only enable them to drive higher valuations in their business platforms but also prepare for the future. BFSI organizations are gearing up for the large-scale migration of workloads, making containerization of legacy applications a necessary step in the process of meeting the requirements of business, risk, compliance.
The road ahead
Technology is becoming a crucial tool for entire BFSI vertical. To keep up with increasing demands, today's financial institutions must become tomorrow's technology pioneers. Containers can be important cornerstones of this extensive transformation, while it offers numerous benefits, it also presents a new set of expostulation in terms of skillset and way of thinking. Leading IT service providers in the field like NSEIT have the expertise needed to design and orchestrate the container architecture for financial enterprises in India. By channeling their proficiency in Kubernetes service and open source tools, the BFSI sector in India can work towards a new containerized environment, which can help it adapt and expand within the existing governance models and practices, while also conforming to security policies and standards.
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