There’s no denying that cloud has revolutionised the way modern companies do business. Providing a scalable and cost-effective solution to how organisations manage their data, applications and infrastructure, cloud delivers the game-changing flexibility that’s essential to keep pace with today’s ever evolving business needs.
With cloud computing in play, IT leaders can flex resources up or down in the most cost-efficient and reliable way possible while tapping into innovative technologies that will fast track new capabilities at speed. All the while leveraging the robust security and backup resources offered by cloud providers to enhance how they safeguard data and applications and achieve the high availability of data along the way.
However, today’s challenging economic times are driving IT decision makers to rethink their cloud strategies. For many, this means initiating customised infrastructure solutions designed around their exact needs, so they can capture business value in a sustainable way. But that’s not the only issue that’s top of mind for IT leaders.
Let’s take a look at some of the key factors currently shaping the cloud evolution trend.
1 Hyperscalers aren’t the only option
Today’s IT managers are increasingly savvy about their options when it comes to achieving an optimal cost-to-capacity ratio.
While public cloud providers may set the benchmark for quality and performance, these services don’t come cheap, especially where bandwidth consumption is concerned. This is why IT decision makers are now questioning if the entirety of their company’s workloads needs to be hosted on expensive hyperscaler infrastructure. Especially when they can get the same performance, if not better, at a lower cost by exploring alternative solutions and providers.
While hyperscalers may be ideal for companies that constantly need the ability to scale ‘infinitely’, many organisations have a largely static or stable infrastructure all year round. For example, e-commerce firms know they can expect a steady level of traffic daily and will only need to scale infinitely to cope with peak demand periods like Black Friday or Christmas.
In these scenarios it makes sense to move stable workloads and persistent infrastructure to a more cost-effective provider, integrating with a hyperscaler to offload peak traffic. It’s a creative way to save money without compromising on performance or resiliency.
2 Building out hybrid with flexibility in mind
IT managers are rethinking their IT infrastructures with hybrid in mind, moving workloads between a mixture of on-premises, public and private cloud as computing needs and costs change. For example,
development workloads or big data can be hosted in the public cloud, while business critical applications and data are housed elsewhere on dedicated servers.
Offering a wide breadth of deployment options, hybrid infrastructures are advantageous from a number of perspectives. For example, data can be accessed from anywhere to support distributed operations, meanwhile private connections to the public cloud will deliver enhanced security and more predictable performance. Indeed, compared to public cloud solutions, a private hybrid cloud solution gives IT managers much greater control over the design and architecture of their systems while providing a higher level of data security.
Partnering with MSPs to achieve business-led ambitions
IT decision makers are looking to capture business value on a number of fronts. Doing so, however, increasingly depends on partnering with one or more managed cloud service providers (MSPs) to manage their cloud environments, optimise infrastructure costs and deliver on sustainability and green computing goals.
Giving companies access to the tools and expertise needed to adapt their IT environment to their changing needs, MSPs offer a cost-effective way to secure and take care of computing, storage, networks and application stacks running in the cloud.
Skilled at combining on-premises and multi-cloud resources and architecting solutions for specialised workloads or functions like analytics, today’s MSPs are developing highly bespoke services that give IT managers high levels of flexible control over their operations in the cloud.
As IT leaders look to accelerate business-process redesign, initiate continuous integration and delivery development pipelines and reduce IT spending using cloud-native tools, working with an MSP makes it possible to build on an organisation’s strong cloud foundations in an agile, secure and sustainable manner.
Evolution, not revolution
The current energy crisis is spurring IT leaders to reassert control over their infrastructure expenses and build enhanced agility into their cloud strategies. Alongside integrating legacy infrastructure with the wider cloud environment, the demands of IT decision makers are becoming increasingly sophisticated when it comes to enabling a truly holistic cloud strategy founded on sound cloud economics.
Having completed their initial lift-and-shift activities, the focus now is on refining cloud strategies to unlock new business value. This means working with multiple cloud providers to fine tune operational expenditure, find the services that best suit current workload requirements and initiate new capabilities that will give them a competitive edge.