Last year, global-leading research and advisory company, Gartner Inc, released a report predicting by 2020, 90% of organisations will adopt hybrid infrastructure services. “As the demand for agility and flexibility grows, organisations will shift toward more industrialised, less tailored options,” said DD Mishra, research director at Gartner in a statement.
“Organisations that adopt hybrid infrastructure will optimise costs and increase efficiency. However, it increases the complexity of selecting the right toolset to deliver end-to-end services in a multi-sourced environment.”
We take a closer look at this trend.
Hybrid technology is an IT computing environment using a mix of on-site, private cloud and public cloud services, with all platforms working together. These networks are based on both peer-to-peer as well as client-server relationships.
Their popularity has risen because hybrid networks include the best features of workgroups from peer-to-peer networks. These include agility, scalability, flexibility, and responsiveness, together with the reliability, efficiency and security of server-based networks. It means that organisations can decide where its applications should run, and not the opposite.
Client-server applications are still centrally located and managed but can transfer application workloads to the cloud. Users or workgroups are able to assign local access to resources and manage them without requiring assistance from network administrators.
However, because files can be saved on workstations, document control and back up systems must be carefully examined to avoid duplication or loss of data.
New demands bring new solutions
So if the future is a hybrid environment, how can organisations best plan for dominance of hybrid cloud and software-defined infrastructures?
The first step in creating an efficient and cost-effective hybrid environment for any organisation is to identify and classify data and applications. Sensitive customer data, for example should be placed on a dedicated server along with analytical tools and applications, CRM or database services. Front-end applications can be run in the public cloud including enterprise social networks, email, mobile device management and web content management.
To get the most out of a hybrid computing environment, there are key factors and metrics which must be analysed. Primarily these are performance, data access, and security. That is, determining your organisation has fast access to critical data at all times and that the most sensitive data is secure.
The future is hybrid
The hybrid trend infers the growth of cloud-based services and a decline of traditional data centre outsourcing (DCO), which involves third-party management responsibility for operating servers, storage, and host platforms.
In the same report, Gartner reported that the DCO market is shrinking and with it, global spending. Gartner predicts that cloud computing services will grow 66% to $68.4 billion by 2020 while data centre outsourcing spending will shrink by 18%.
IT systems are increasingly concerned with where data is generated and processed, and how quickly this data can move along the most efficient pathways.
Two other trends in the IT world, tie in closely with a hybrid future ― AI and IoT. In their simplest terms, both hinge on large amounts of data being analysed quickly and in many cases, sent elsewhere for further processing. But despite the complexity and sheer volume of the data, decisions must be made in real-time to be effective. The only way for these technologies to keep moving forward with efficiency is with a hybrid multi-cloud platform.
– Natasha Poynton