Hybrid cloud: the best fit for the changing world of IT

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Hybrid cloud: the best fit for the changing world of IT

As mentioned previously most organizations have some form of cloud nowadays and an increasing majority has a multi-cloud environment. And that brings us to hybrid cloud.

There are quite some misconceptions about what hybrid cloud really is. Some people think it’s just the fact of using public and private clouds in an organization, what it is clearly not.

Hybrid cloud definitions and perceptions

The differences in perceptions of hybrid cloud and thus what exactly hybrid cloud means, let alone a definition of hybrid cloud, clearly show in the below image, based upon research you can find.

  • A majority (40 percent) defines hybrid cloud as the use of public and private cloud.
  • 15 percent defines hybrid cloud as a cloud plus any additional cloud and non-cloud infrastructure.
  • 12 percent goes for hybrid cloud as multiple applications portfolios across multiple deployment options.

Let’s take a look at how the National Institute of Standards and Technology defined hybrid cloud: “The cloud infrastructure is a composition of two or more distinct cloud infrastructures (private, community, or public) that remain unique entities, but are bound together by standardized or proprietary technology that enables data and application portability (e.g., cloud bursting for load balancing between clouds)”.

That binding aspect is crucial and is where hybrid cloud strategy and management come in; so it’s not “just” using several clouds.

The business rationale and advantages of hybrid cloud

With regards to the business aspect of hybrid cloud, here is what a CIO told us on the role of hybrid cloud in a landscape where public cloud adoption is on the rise: “There will always be a hybrid cloud. ICT is at the core of business for many organizations and, depending on the context, they will always want to do some things themselves. On top of that there’s the legacy. Nevertheless, the acceptation of the public cloud goes faster”.

It does indeed and replacing legacy systems happens to be one of the drivers.

As flexibility, business agility, the possibility to deploy and to scale fast are increasingly joining and even overtaking more traditional cloud benefits such as cost saving as organizations focus on optimization, innovation and transformation in an increasingly real-time economy where speed and time-to-market are essential and customers and end users expect fast and available applications and experiences, this flexibility also goes for the ‘mix’ and management of various clouds..

IT is hybrid, business is hybrid, it all gets more complex with new technologies, evolutions and digital transformation requirements that in the end are about more holistic, flexible and, indeed, hybrid realities. The integration of IT and OT, multi-modal IT, different forms of doing business within ecosystems, changing demands at different speeds and various individual realities, you name it.

It’s clear that in a world where we look at outcomes and optimized approaches to run the business and at the same time innovate, diversity and flexibility matters. And that goes for the cloud too. Again, there is no one-size-fits-all for every IT or computing aspect and each organization, application, process, project and workload is different. So, yes, companies predominantly go for hybrid cloud solutions in the current rapidly growing multi-cloud reality.

They can move workloads from one type of cloud to another, upscale in no time, adapt their cloud needs in function of demand and dispose of a wide range of additional tools in the cloud to accelerate application roll-out at scale, add intelligence to their cloud environments, protect the endpoints of their business with smart cloud-based security tools and deploy new software faster, not just by ‘putting it in the cloud’ but increasingly by truly migrating it to the cloud computing paradigm.

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