Continual monitoring of cloud computing trends, with regular updates to an enterprise’s cloud strategy, will be essential to avoid costly mistakes or miss market opportunities over the next few years. Gartner, a leading technology research and advisory company, has identified five cloud computing subtrends that will be accelerating, shifting or reaching a tipping point over the next three years, and that users must factor into their planning processes:
Formal decision frameworks facilitate cloud investment optimization
The cloud promises to deliver a range of benefits, including a shift from capital-intensive to operational cost models, lower overall cost, greater agility and reduced complexity. It can also be used to shift the focus of IT resources to higher-value-added activities for the business, or to support business innovation and, potentially, lower risks. However, these prospective benefits need to be examined carefully and mapped against a number of challenges, including security, lack of transparency, concerns about performance and availability, the potential for vendor lock-in, licensing constraints and integration needs.
Hybrid computing is an imperative
Hybrid computing refers to the coordination and combination of external cloud computing services (public or private) and internal infrastructure or application services. Over time, hybrid cloud computing could lead to a unified model in which there is a single “cloud” made up of multiple cloud platforms (internal or external) that can be used, as needed, based on changing business requirements.
Gartner recommends that enterprises focus near-term efforts on application and data integration, linking fixed internal and external applications with a hybrid solution. Where public cloud application services or custom applications running on public cloud infrastructures are used, guidelines and standards should be established for how these elements will combine with internal systems to form a hybrid environment.
Cloud brokerage will facilitate cloud consumption
As cloud computing adoption proliferates, so does the need for consumption assistance. A cloud services brokerage (CSB) is a service provider that plays an intermediary role in cloud computing. Interest in the CSB concept increased last year, and Gartner expects this trend to accelerate over the next three years.
Cloud-centric design becomes a necessity
Many organizations look first for opportunities to migrate existing enterprise workloads to a cloud system and/or an application infrastructure. This approach may provide benefits where the workload has a highly variable resource requirement, or where the application naturally lends itself to horizontal scalability. However, to fully exploit the potential of a cloud model, applications need to be designed with the unique characteristics, limitations and opportunities of a cloud model in mind.
We can help integrate the benefits of cloud computing into your organization successfully. As cloud computing influences future data center and operational needs, Gartner recommends that enterprises apply the concepts of cloud computing to future data center and infrastructure investments to increase agility and efficiency. Let Corporate Technologies Group take a look at your voice and data network services, including information security, and develop a custom-built strategy for you.