We are living in unprecedented times. In the span of just 1.5 years, the COVID-19 pandemic has altered every possible business model. Digital is a must-have capability today. Agility to quickly adapt to changing business dynamics and innovate quickly is also a crucial capability. To fulfil these objectives, enterprises have been quick to adopt cloud computing as a technology to quickly scale and accelerate their digital initiatives. Among various cloud computing models, the hybrid cloud has become one of the most popular models for fulfilling many core objectives. This is corroborated by NTT’s ‘2021 Hybrid Cloud Report’, which found out that a massive 93.7% of organizations believe that the hybrid cloud is critical to meet their immediate business needs.
Let us look at some of the core factors why hybrid cloud is being increasingly preferred over other models:
A stepping stone to the cloud: Transitioning to the cloud can be a challenging task, and most enterprises are not sure of the approach they must take for migrating their applications to the cloud. From re-factoring, hosting or re-architecting an application, there are a host of options that an enterprise must choose from. In such situations, a hybrid cloud model can be considered as a stepping stone to the public cloud. Organizations can initially test out the public cloud model with some applications before they gain the confidence to completely transition to a public cloud environment. A hybrid cloud model can give enterprises the capability to leverage both worlds, and gradually evaluate which model is suited for its business model from an economics or scale perspective.
Resilience: Resilience which has always been an underrated capability is today counted as one of the most important. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced organizations to diversify their risks and not put their IT infrastructure on any one model – be it on-premise or public cloud. The hybrid cloud is a perfect example of diversification of risks.
Compliance: Every region or country has different regulations. A hybrid cloud approach enables organizations to ensure compliance with different laws in different countries. A hybrid cloud approach also helps organizations to choose where they can place their workloads based on compliance requirements. For example, organizations can choose to critical workloads in a private cloud, while less sensitive workloads can be hosted in the public cloud. This can be of great advantage to a business in a regulated sector such as healthcare, government, or the financial services sector. Laws such as Europe’s GDPR that mandate companies to store customer information in a specific region have influenced the decision of enterprises to opt for a hybrid cloud approach.
Latency: With remote working becoming the norm, many enterprises are looking at edge deployments, made possible by deploying edge datacenters. Edge datacenters have been extremely popular, as it enables enterprises to significantly reduce latency. Edge computing strengthens the hybrid computing model, and enterprises can use the public cloud for workloads that require a lot of processing power, while edge computing can address requirements that require real-time processing capabilities.
A majority of businesses today have requirements that require capabilities of both public clouds and private clouds. For example, public clouds are perfect for scaling up quickly while private clouds are preferred when data is sensitive. As a hybrid cloud option is the blend of both private and public cloud models, it is perfect for fast-growing businesses that are looking to scale fast while being compliant.
The article has been authored by Nitin Mishra, Head of Cloud services, NTT Ltd. In India