It should not be overlooked that Kubernetes is truly one of the most radical advancements in enterprise software in many years. It is designed as a natural accompaniment for cloud deployments and streamlines configuration, quickens time to deployment, and makes compute resources more efficient.
As a result, Kubernetes is fast becoming the preferred method of software provisioning. Gartner has reported that Kubernetes’ popularity is set to rise, highlighting that more than two-thirds of global organizations will be running more than two containerized applications by 2023—tripling the total from 2019.
Kubernetes allows organizations to deploy cloud-native applications anywhere. It brings together the benefits of easier deployment, scalability, and, significantly, the management of containerized applications—an approach that is now accepted as one of the most powerful and effective ways of improving compute resource usage.
Popping the Hood on Kubernetes
The benefits are becoming well-documented. VMware mapped the state of Kubernetes in a recent report, and found that 95% of participants are realizing benefits, including more than half who reported improved resource utilization resulting in reduced spending on the private or public cloud compute resources that typically house enterprise applications. Another third of respondents said Kubernetes delivered lower public cloud costs.
These cost benefits and resource efficiencies are best demonstrated when comparing Kubernetes against one of the other most common ways of provisioning software virtual machines. Each virtual machine will include a copy of the software it provisions, a guest operating system, and a hypervisor to allocate computing resources across different operating systems and applications. All of these different components put a strain on system resources. In addition, virtual machines are relatively static; it can be difficult to move them back and forth between on-premise servers, private clouds, and the public cloud.
Containerization at Work
A containerized software application, on the other hand, runs on an external operating system, eliminating the amount of compute resources necessary to run the multiple guest operating systems. In many situations, a company may be able to run multiple containerized applications on the server resources that previously could only accommodate one application. The container has central tools to manage how applications use server resources, which, along with the fact that there are no longer multiple operating systems to manage, reduces administrative overhead.
Getting in the Fast Lane for Future Developments
According to the VMware study, 53% of respondents said Kubernetes enabled faster software development cycles. If Kubernetes is embedded in an enterprise software platform, providers can quicken the pace of bringing new software features and capabilities to market and into the hands of customers. In turn, businesses can themselves quickly adapt to changes in the market and regulatory environment, and even turn that agility into a competitive advantage, beating rivals to market or course correcting faster than they can.
Now more than ever, businesses are having to constantly change or reset processes and requirements. Gone are the days when a company could roll out ERP or other enterprise technology and “set it and forget it” for years. Now, acquired divisions, changing customer demands, dynamic go-to-market strategies, and the introduction of disruptive technologies such as IoT, AI, and augmented/virtual reality, all mean the enterprise stack must be updated more regularly.