Digital transformation has become a must-have initiative for organizations in today’s hyperconnected landscape. As hybrid work becomes the new normal for many organizations and the business world continues to operate in unprecedented times, the ability to operate and adapt effectively, with speed, is crucial for survival. As such, for organizations looking to stay competitive in the years to come, investing in the right tools, technologies and frameworks to strengthen their operations should be a top priority as a fundamental imperative.
Over the past eighteen months, businesses have rapidly adopted cloud computing technology as a foundational solution to scale and accelerate their digital initiatives. In fact, at no other time has there been such a demand for cloud services than during the Covid-19 pandemic. With the physical world replaced by a virtual one, cloud services have helped make work a better and more connected experience for everyone. Forward-looking businesses should therefore take the time to consider the benefits that the cloud has to offer.
Among a variety of different cloud computing models, hybrid cloud has emerged as one of the most popular solutions to meet the fundamental goals of an organization. Whether it’s refactoring, hosting, or revamping an application, there are many factors that business leaders need to consider when choosing the right solution for them. In such situations, a hybrid cloud model can allow organizations to leverage multiple environments to meet the needs of each core function. Essentially, this approach allows businesses to get the most out of the public and private cloud, both economically and securely.
Understanding the hybrid cloud
Hybrid cloud is an architectural model that combines multiple public and private clouds. This framework serves as a common infrastructure that can be interconnected and seamlessly operated to provide cohesive computing environments. This is different from multi-cloud infrastructure – a variant of hybrid cloud – where application workloads are spread across two public clouds and are used to handle various tasks.
Some popular hybrid adaptation models include custom management, vendor management, partner management, and cloud provider management. The relevance of each variation will depend on the unique needs of your business.
How can hybrid cloud benefit your business?
The benefits of hybrid cloud are numerous. In fact, adopting a hybrid model not only offers businesses the opportunity to improve their overall agility, but is also a great way to reduce costs and boost security levels as it empowers workloads. to move freely between private and public clouds. Simply put, a common IT architecture can deliver improved results at all levels.
1. By putting workloads where they make sense
Hybrid cloud can truly give businesses the best of both worlds. For example, the private cloud provides control and isolation for critical security operations, while the public cloud offers elastic and cost-effective pricing for temporary consumer demands and seasonal peaks in business activity. At a time when organizations are looking to improve their security and flexibility, we clearly see this model as the go-to solution for those looking to get ahead of the innovation curve.
Essentially, businesses can benefit from the scalability of the public cloud, moving as many non-critical functions to that space as possible, while creating more capacity and improving security for the private. Sensitive data in the private cloud will then be stored according to the parameters established by current data protection regulations. Simply put, hybrid cloud access enables businesses to efficiently meet every unique need quickly and securely.
2. By reducing unnecessary costs
Cost is another key factor pushing organizations towards the power of hybrid cloud. By continually re-evaluating an organization’s use of the cloud and exploring new cloud services that could be leveraged, subsequent optimizations can lead to improved performance, reduced costs, and better return on investment (ROI). Essentially, partitioning services between public and private clouds will often reduce unnecessary expense.
In addition, hybrid cloud allows business leaders to allocate public cloud resources for short-term needs, such as product testing or spike in traffic during a specific event, at significantly lower costs. to those of an on-premises data center. Setting up a traditional data center requires a lot of capital expenditure (CAPEX) and upfront investment, so it’s understandable that companies go with a more flexible option. For business leaders looking to survive in today’s hyper-connected landscape, hybrid cloud might just be the right fit for them.
3. By accelerating business growth
Hybrid cloud enables rapid innovation, giving organizations more choice when it comes to adopting cloud-native technologies. This ability to choose a solution that best fits their needs, in turn, allows businesses to differentiate themselves from the competition, respond quickly to ever-changing consumer demands, and deliver rapid business use cases. Adopting public cloud, for example, offers increased agility and the ability to quickly build infrastructures for your customers, without impacting critical business operations.
What should organizations watch out for when implementing this strategy?
Like any other digital infrastructure, hybrid cloud requires careful planning, implementation, and maintenance. Therefore, business leaders should carefully consider whether a hybrid model is really the best option for their business, as well as the main pitfalls to avoid on the path to cloud adoption.
1. Manual infrastructure management should be avoided
It is important that organizations do not attempt to manually manage hybrid infrastructure, as this can lead to errors and inconsistencies at all levels. For example, the infrastructure landscape can become complex over time as new business functions are introduced and changes become difficult to deploy. To avoid this, implement infrastructure automation from day one and promote it in release environments. Infrastructure as Code (IaC) can offer advantages over manual provisioning, both in terms of initial provisioning time and ongoing maintenance.
2. Make sure resources are not mismanaged
How resources are managed is an essential part of a robust, secure and efficient infrastructure. First, always make sure that the cheapest combination of resources is used for given use cases. For example, make sure money isn’t wasted in the public cloud by letting resources run when they’re not doing anything. It is also essential that the right network design is in place before launching new cloud infrastructures. This provides clear network zoning and prevents errors when various networks are peered together for transparent communication.
3. Choose technology options according to needs
Business leaders looking to take full advantage of the hybrid cloud should avoid being swayed by the hype of cool tech and industry. Using cloud native technology without stopping to consider its suitability for a given use case is an unnecessary risk. organizations must therefore take the time to understand the challenges they face and choose the right solution at the right price, which can create the conditions to deliver true business value.
Many businesses today need the capabilities of both public and private clouds. While public cloud solutions are great for quickly scaling up or down, private clouds are a suitable option when critical data needs to be stored or isolated. It’s no surprise, then, that businesses are increasingly turning to the power of hybrid cloud to strengthen their framework and outperform their competitors. At the end of the day, hybrid cloud really delivers on the promise of delivering the best of both worlds.
That being said, as with any other product selection, organizations should follow an objective method before deciding which cloud infrastructure best meets their needs. After all, not all businesses have the same basic goals. At Tech Amigos, we’re committed to helping businesses navigate cloud adoption and choose the right solution for them.
Sachin Deshpande, founder, Amigos Tech