hybrid cloud

The phenomenon of the hybrid cloud seems to be growing at an unprecedented pace, with more and more organizations veering towards the virtualization of their business models. A recent report published by Gartner asserts that nearly half of all large enterprises will adopt the model of hybrid cloud by 2018.

Virtualization reduces capital expenses, and standards and automation reduce operational expenses,” said Thomas Bittman, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. “However, taking the next step of adding usage metrics, self-service offerings and automated provisioning requires investment in technologies without a significant reduction in operational cost. With this in mind, the driving factor for going that next step should primarily be agility.

Vendors are promoting private cloud computing as ‘the next thing’ for infrastructure and operations — and it is, but only for the right services,” said Mr. Bittman. “Virtualization is a horizontal, very broad trend, impacting a high percentage of IT infrastructure. Private cloud is a specific style of computing that will leverage virtualization, but is not appropriate for all services. While the majority of midsize and large enterprises will build and deploy private cloud services over the next few years, private cloud will only be used for specific, appropriate services.

Too often, private cloud projects are started by choosing a technology, but technology itself does not solve the transformational people and process issues,” said Mr. Bittman. “It is much better to focus first on an approach to make transformative changes. In many cases, that means creating a separate organization outside of traditional IT processes — at least to incubate these projects — and focusing first on a simple project that has buy-in between IT and IT’s customers.

Moreover, even the IDC confirms that from $95.8 billion in 2014, the value of the hybrid cloud market is likely to increase to $200 billion by 2018. IBM recently committed a budget of $1 billion to hybrid storage software as well.

So what is hybrid cloud?

hybrid cloud vector

While security was initially a concern with the public cloud model and additional infrastructural cost was an issue with the private model, the hybrid cloud model provides the perfect balance of economy and efficiency. With hybrid cloud use cases going up significantly over the past year, the future seems rife with possibilities. The models are fused in such a way that they work simultaneously, in tandem, but continue to remain separate entities. Most organizations seem to be inclined towards employing this model because it provides a secure forum for their sensitive data, with the additional benefit of cost effectiveness.

Hybrid Cloud

Here are some of the other benefits that the model offers:

  • Good scalability– As companies grow, the need to expand its scope of operations becomes imperative. The transition from a traditional cloud model to a hybrid platform offers high scalability without the threat of a compromise in security. The transformation is smooth, quick and does not hamper the quality of cloud storage. Owing to its efficiency, even small enterprises are now steering their businesses towards the hybrid cloud model.
  • Focus in usage-based accounting and IT services– one of the other crucial hybrid cloud advantages is its ability to monitor and regulate the utilization of resources at all levels. The transformation of IT services from being merely a cost center to a structural asset to the working of a company has made has brought with it the need to ensure optimum allocation and assessment of resources and their management. Helping keep a record of all invoices and thus managing the purchasing power of the organization is greatly facilitated by the hybrid cloud model.
  • Conducive to eCommerce– The hybrid cloud model enables better data flow control, thereby proving to be a convenient choice for online markets. With several online vendors beginning to recognize the potential of hybrid cloud advantages and how it could enhance the quality of their services, experts opine that by 2018, hybrid cloud may well become the norm.
  • Support for Internet of Things-The IoT is gradually gaining great prominences, especially in the case of machine-to-machine communication. This could impact the industrial processes of warehousing, transportation, managing inventory and storage in a big way. The ability to assess and regulate the performance of these sectors by enabling remote access could help enterprises save time and resources. With multitasking becoming a prerequisite to management, hybrid cloud can now help us track and count everything, thereby greatly reducing the risk of loss or waste.
  • The best of both worlds– As mentioned earlier, the hybrid cloud model offers the efficiency of the private cloud model combined with the frugality of the public cloud model. With most organizations placing their secure and confidential data on the private platform and their other sources on the public model, not only do they quell any potential threat to the sensitivity of their data, but also curtail redundant costs greatly by simultaneously accessing the public model. All those who harbor apprehensions about moving their data to a public cloud network, find hybrid to be the perfect solution.
  • Disaster management– During periods of crisis or stagnation, the cloud network helps company strategize and recover its lost information. The public platform can help retrieve business information and help the organization from incurring major losses or damage.

While hybrid cloud seems to be the future of computing and virtualization of business, there are a few considerations that need to be borne about the model. No system is perfect, and the hybrid cloud network is no exception to the rule. It needs to be implemented after careful deliberation and contemplation.

Compliance– Compliance between the public and private cloud providers is mandatory before one opts for the cloud hybrid. Even the means of coordination between the two platforms needs to be verified so as to ensure optimum output.

Security– By placing a sizeable portion of your data on a public platform, security concerns are naturally magnified. By setting up requisite security and privacy measures across the cloud network, the organization needs to take care and ensure the viability of its public cloud network.

Interoperability– companies need to make sure that the technology foundation employed by them is compatible with the collaborative infrastructure of the cloud network to facilitate smooth integration and migration. This is absolutely essential so that movement of data between the two networks is not hampered or constricted in any way.

In conclusion, the hybrid network seems to be the perfect middle ground between quality and quantity. Companies that are skeptical about complete surrender to cloud see this as the perfect balance between frugality and efficiency. Years of innovation and improvisation in the field of cloud computing seems to be paying off.