Change comes fast in today’s business world. Go-to-market timelines are shorter than ever. Companies in adjacent industries are emerging as direct competitors.

Driven by technologies like artificial intelligence, predictive analytics, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things, disruption is likely redefining everything from how your business model operates to how your teams work.

In this landscape, it’s essential to run faster, more agile, and more innovative. For many businesses, the answer is to move business applications to the cloud. In fact, IDC expects 75% of enterprise infrastructure and software spending to go toward cloud offerings this year.

However, moving to the cloud doesn’t automatically result in speed, agility, and innovation. If you’re establishing an on-premises data center, you may lack the in-house resources and expertise needed to optimize performance and drive real business value. If you’re opting for an infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) offering, you may end up addressing only the infrastructure layer of your solution stack. Without dedicated, expert management of your system, you could set yourself up for trouble – making it impossible to unlock the full value of your business.

Private managed cloud deployment options can help tackle these challenges. Depending on your organization, your overall approach and goals may be different. For instance:

  • Startups that lack legacy data centers and adequate expertise in technical and application management tend to invest in a comprehensive solution that’s fast and easy to set up so they can start achieving value from their applications quickly.
  • More mature organizations typically refocus IT, transitioning the function from keeping the lights on to innovating and creating real business value.
  • Other organizations want to go even further as they transform business processes to better meet the demands of today’s business landscape.

As you can see, not every private managed cloud offering is the same. To achieve your unique business goals, you need to choose one that takes care of every requirement and the complexity of your specific deployment. Only then will you get the speed, scalability, customization, security, and control that you need.

Best Practices for Creating a Digital Core in the Cloud

According to Gartner, an enterprise cloud service sets the standard for private managed clouds when creating a digital core. The most important factor in driving value with your private managed cloud is coordinating and managing all three levels of your solution landscape: infrastructure, systems and technical operations, and applications. Only then will you be free to give more attention to innovation.

This comprehensive, end-to-end approach removes the complexity of operating in the cloud, allowing you to focus on achieving your business goals:

  • If you’re a startup, you gain a comprehensive solution that coordinates and manages all three levels of your solution stack, making it simple to scale quickly and support geographically dispersed operations. And thanks to added customizability of an enterprise cloud service, you get the industry- and process-specific solution that you really need.
  • If you want to shift from enabling IT to driving business value, you may decide to gain a single point of accountability for managing every aspect of your cloud operations. By handing off infrastructure, system, and application management to a third-party provider, you can reduce risk, increase innovation, quickly adopt new processes, and drive IT ROI.
  • If you are looking to transform your business, an enterprise cloud service offers a direct line to development and innovation professionals. You get the technical, industry, and business-process expertise you need to customize your solution landscape and address issues proactively. Meanwhile, a cloud provider manages all related service-level agreements, which brings together infrastructure, systems and technical operations, and application management all under one roof.

No matter the organization, thriving in the digital future will require speed, agility, and relentless attention to driving business value. By handling the technical aspects of running a digital core in the cloud, an enterprise cloud service liberates your organization to address operating needs and challenges like never before. In the end, this means that you can focus on accelerating innovation and growth, reducing risk, and driving business and IT transformation.

Learn more about the SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud service and its unique model for value delivery: Download the white paper “SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud: Your Key to Digital Business with SAP HANA” to discover how organizations like yours are benefiting from the enterprise cloud service.

Andy Greig is the Global Marketing Plan Lead, SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud, at SAP.

This story originally appeared on the Digitalist.