Cloud Computing is the digital catalyst of the future, helping companies increase business availability, continuity and flexibility. The spending on public cloud services was forecasted by Gartner Inc. to a total of $3.4 billion in 2020, a 25% increase from 2019.
Future readiness and streamlined processes are top priorities for those who want to stay competitive. “By 2022, cloud shift across key enterprise IT markets will increase to 28%.” says Santhosh Rao, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner.
As both the public and the private cloud offer their advantages, hybrid cloud solutions can address disparate IT environments and offer companies the best of both worlds. According to Rao, advantages are “the cost optimization, agility, flexibility, scalability and elasticity benefits of public cloud, in conjunction with the control, compliance, security and reliability of private cloud”.
But implementing a hybrid cloud strategy into your business does not always run smoothly. Disruption due to the lack of expertise while implementing the solution can always hinder the process.
3 main challenges to hybrid cloud adoption
The lack of a comprehensive cloud strategy can create unnecessary risk exposure. Digital Leaders must develop a clear enterprise strategy before cloud is implemented. Some of the most popular challenges to hybrid cloud adoption are:
1. Cost optimization and reduction
Inefficient planning for costs seems to be at the core of the challenge organizations face. Typically, cost overruns occur for the following reasons:
- Inflexible Capacity planning
- Lower cloud infrastructure than expected
- Collateral costs (data transfer, load balancing, other services)
- Resources are not accounted for when finished using
- Higher cost services are being used more than planned
To overcome such challenges, businesses need tools that manage costs and application deployment across all cloud environments. Such tools must include features that help better manage the entire hybrid IT environment and provide better resource access. These tools should provide analytics that help the business better control costs and utilization. Capabilities should include:
- Self-service infrastructure
- API-driven, services-based SaaS platform
- Insights dashboard for visibility into cloud spend and utilization
- Cost visibility for budgeting, control, and optimization
- SaaS-based platform to optimize operations
2. Security and compliance
Security and compliance are also challenging with hybrid cloud because the model is different than traditional on-premises models. As security is typically driven directly by APIs, the developers must set it up so when they lack the expertise to set up the right security, their lack of experience can cause some problems if not addressed in advance.
Data security and compliance are related functions and the IT organization is fully responsible for all compliance-related issues, so the first step to overcome challenges in this area is to dedicate additional training and tooling.
General Privacy Data Regulation (GDPR) requires that any organization serving a customer in the EU must know exactly where that customer’s data is stored and be able to fully delete it on-demand at the request of that customer. Just like that, companies already under regulatory mandates issued by their specific industries — such as HIPAA in healthcare, PCI DSS in retailing, and SOX in the financial sector — and must be careful to amend their policy and security systems for security and compliance.
The goal of governance is to foster standardization and improve quality. Today we face a growing set of challenges related to managing an evolving IT infrastructure and delivering IT-as-a-Service (ITaaS). The management and integration of private and public cloud infrastructures can become so complex that the multitude of tools lead to lack of efficiency and even start increasing costs.
Investing in a Cloud Management Platform (CMP) that is designed for cloud governance will optimize costs across different infrastructures. Best Practices to empower your cloud governance are:
- Controlling the instance types developers can use
- Enforcing policy-based AWS
- Consolidating the cost view across consumption on all platforms
- Using automated processes for short term instances
Outsourcing consultancy for better hybrid cloud deployment strategy
For many companies, growing expertise to address all the challenges may not be feasible. It takes on valuable resources to train in-house experts that can professionally overcome any problems a hybrid cloud implementation might bring along. Therefore, outside experts can help the organization obtain the required skills quickly.
A consultant with expertise in deploying hybrid cloud solutions, will be able to tailor solutions to your specific needs. Industry experts know what tools are available to help solve these issues. The chosen consultant needs to be knowledgeable about the status quo to formulate insights and suggestions for helping you meet future goals. New technologies will always yield new challenges to your business.