Bulletproof grows headcount to meet cloud demands

Bulletproof has been hiring cloud architects to provide technical support for its continuously growing customer base that is moving to the cloud.

Cloud service provider Bulletproof has beefed up its staff numbers in the past three months to provide technical support for its existing and new customers.

The company hired 19 more people between July and October 2014, bringing the company's total headcount to 69 people. This comes after Bulletproof brought in 120 new customers in the last 12 months, including Racing Victoria, Mazda, Guardian Australia, and Moshtix.

Speaking with ZDNet, Bulletproof chief customer officer Mark Randall said customer demand for managed cloud services validated the need for the company to hire more stuff, in particular, cloud architects.

"We're seeing customers adopting cloud now are increasingly looking to re-architect their environments to suit cloud environments, whereas six to 12 months ago, people were really saying could you lift and shift what we already have somewhere else into the cloud.

"From a professional services perspective, that was a relatively simple piece of work that was about 10, 20, or 30 hours, and the job was done. Now what we're seeing is customers coming to us wanting to transform into agile organisations from a development perspective, and to use continuous integration, deployment, and cloud formation to really automate and treat their infrastructure as code.

"The time and expertise required to assist those customers to move to cloud is significantly higher, and that means we need to be resourced appropriately to support that."

As for what type of cloud models customers are adopting, Randall said without a doubt that public cloud adoption is on top of the list for many enterprises, especially startups and those in the digital and e-commerce space.

"Australia is very much at the forefront out of all the countries in terms of public cloud adoption," he said.

But at the same time, there continues to be customers, mainly in the government and education space, that are still lingering on a hybrid cloud model. Randall said this is mainly because enterprises have legacy applications, or are facing software licensing and regulation constraints.

"A number of customers are looking to re-architect for cloud, but certain customers are not in the position to re-architect everything immediately; they have to do that over a period of time. So most of them say, 'Look, I've got my web digital, I've got my backup and archive, and I'm ready to put that up into cloud today, but I'm not ready to change or re-architect my ERP or back-office applications'," he said.

"So the hybrid cloud is where they'll put their other workloads on a VMware or public or private farm, and move some of the others to public. The plan there is six to 12 months down the line, they move the whole lot across."

According to statistics from analyst firm Frost & Sullivan, the Australian cloud computing industry reached AU$1.23 billion in 2013, and is estimated to increase to AU$4.55 billion by 2018. Around 69 percent of all Australian businesses now use some form of cloud computing service, with companies finding an average cost saving of 12 percent from adoption of these services.

Of those who have adopted cloud, 62 percent use private cloud deployments, with an increasing number moving to a hybrid of both public and private cloud services.