Half of enterprises will use hybrid clouds by 2017

hybrid clouds

Enterprises can overcome barriers to adopting a hybrid cloud by settling on an approach before implementing the technology. Credit: Witty Bear

Technology analysts from Gartner predict hybrid clouds will have a role in nearly half of large enterprises four years from now, an upward trend that they say will largely be driven by a desire for greater agility.

A survey conducted by the firm found that three-fourths of respondents planned to embrace the hybrid cloud in the next two years, but Gartner vice president and analyst Thomas Bittman tempered that optimism in his prediction as private cloud computing remains a big step for many enterprises.

Leading factors

The rise of the hybrid cloud comes as IT professionals gain a deeper understanding of how public and private clouds work, and the benefits of each approach. Public clouds are ideal for storing large, but infrequently used files, such as backup data, while private clouds excel at handling files that are frequently used by several apps, a cloud consultant recently told Tech Page One.

Gartner’s forecast adds to a growing body of evidence that hybrid cloud computing is indeed on the rise. A separate study released in August by market research specialist Vanson Bourne found that 60 percent of enterprise IT decision makers have moved or are considering moving applications or workloads either partially (41 percent) or completely (19 percent) to private clouds. Respondents from the United States and United Kingdom who participated in the study cited limitations of the public cloud or benefits of other platforms.

Strategy comes first

Challenges to adoption include the amount of preparation needed to implement the technology in a meaningful way. Bittman said IT first needs to understand where agility could improve existing services and those under development. Exploring the technology first isn’t the most productive approach, he said.

“It is much better to focus first on an approach to make transformative changes,” he said. “In many cases, that means creating a separate organization outside of traditional IT processes — at least to incubate these projects — and focusing first on a simple project that has buy-in between IT and IT’s customers.”

Indeed, most enterprises test the waters with small rollouts, which is why project managers at the outset should choose technology that can scale and vendors with staying power, Bittman said. Fierce market competition will cause many of today’s smaller vendors to become part of larger companies or go out of business.

Nick Clunn
Nick Clunn is a journalist covering the tech beat and an adjunct professor at Montclair State University. He lives in New Jersey, where he had worked as a staff writer for several leading daily newspapers and websites.
Nick Clunn
Nick Clunn
Tags: Cloud Computing,Storage,Technology