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By Gary Thome
“The secret of success is to do the common thing uncommonly well.”
— John D. Rockefeller Jr.
To be successful, businesses must continually improve – they must become more efficient, respond quickly to market changes, and provide superior customer service. Organizations strive to achieve these objectives, as everyone understands their importance. The trick is to do them better than your competition. To cite the Rockefeller quote – you must do the common things uncommonly well.
Succeed in IT uncommonly well
Choosing the right technology is vital to achieving this goal. The ideal technology empowers innovation, improves agility, and reduces operational costs. And according to a new IDC white paper, businesses today are finding that providing a cloud experience throughout all areas of the organization is key.
Yet many enterprises are struggling to find the ideal IT environment. Some are stuck maintaining complex legacy architecture; others are paying for expensive cloud resources that tend to spiral out of control. To provide the most agility and cost savings possible, IT teams are realizing they need to run workloads in a hybrid cloud environment, which consists of public cloud as well as dedicated systems running on and off premises.
This type of experience enables timely, cost-effective, and secure delivery of workloads that help businesses compete more effectively. These business-altering workloads often are used to accomplish a variety of goals: connect smart devices associated with the Internet of Things (IoT), enhance customer experiences, improve business decision-making, increase automation of processes, and empower more effective interactions with customers, prospects, and partners.
New options and requirements for success
The IDC white paper explains the challenges enterprise face as they integrate their workloads. A great deal of planning is needed because moving to a hybrid cloud strategy can be complex. That’s because hybrid cloud consists of new applications using cloud-native approaches running on containers as well as virtual machine-based workloads.
IT can’t easily abandon existing business-critical workloads, because the smooth operations of the business depends on their reliable and predictable delivery. In some cases, it makes sense to migrate workloads to new public, private, or edge cloud-based infrastructure, including hosted private cloud. In other cases, the enterprise may need to modernize or refactor the applications.
“IDC believes that by 2022, 90% of all new apps will feature microservices architectures and 35% of all production apps will be cloud native.” Developers today are now accustomed to the cloud experience and expect greater scale, speed, agility, and accessibility than ever before.
To make the transition to hybrid easier, an enterprise may choose to consume IT resources using an as-a-Service (aaS) model as a means to unify the experience across the hybrid cloud for new and existing applications.
Developing a hybrid cloud strategy for maximum effectiveness
The biggest challenge for most businesses today is trying to determine the right technology, services, and economic models that make the most sense. IT must be able to place workloads across a variety of hybrid options, while rebalancing them as conditions change.
And according to IDC, the cloud experience in today’s world is not about one specific datacenter or cloud. It’s about delivering and managing cloud-based resources everywhere in your organization—from large, shared facilities and internal datacenters to critical business facilities at the edge of the business.
To determine where both new and existing workloads are placed, a number of factors should be considered including latency, resource availability, and data control. In addition, business and IT needs should also be considered. These include the organization’s specialization and business model, mix of workloads, financial health, maturity, workforce, and customer base.
All of these needs shape a strategy of where to run workloads and what the right combination of on- and off-premises resources should be. According to this IDC paper, public cloud may increase efficiency and cost optimization because organizations can match resources to workload needs and address certain requirements such as rapid development. Yet the authors of the paper also note private cloud remains a central focus of an effective hybrid strategy, whether in a datacenter or hosted. They believe most private clouds today are meeting IT’s goals of higher utilization, lower operational costs, and better IT agility when compared to traditional IT environments.
3 considerations for a successful hybrid cloud strategy
Many cloud service and IT solution providers like Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) are building and delivering hybrid cloud services and solutions that help organizations achieve a flexible, open cloud experience. According to IDC, businesses need to keep in mind three characteristics when selecting new hybrid cloud platforms. Each hybrid cloud solution should be:
Software-defined, workload optimized, and composable
Organizations should build a hybrid cloud on a software-defined and composable infrastructure that aggregates compute, storage, and networking resources into shared resource pools available for on-demand allocation.
Open and hybrid by design
Enterprises need to leverage a highly standardized cloud software platform that supports instance, container, and serverless operating environments. Make certain it is tightly linked to one or more public cloud platforms and is easy to link to a hybrid cloud management solution.
Businesses must ensure delivery of a hybrid cloud via an easy to configure, order, and deploy solution that is also simple to maintain and easily upgradable. An as-a-service model consumed via a subscription can easily meet these needs.
Do the common thing uncommonly well
As enterprises around the world strive to compete more effectively, they must ensure their IT strategies are aligned with their business goals. The right hybrid IT experience can help your business become more efficient, respond more quickly to market changes, and provide better customer service.
Finding the right technology is important, yet it’s also helpful to choose an experienced partner with a myriad of options at their disposal. HPE can help you assess your options, while providing valuable insights to implement a solution that’s open, flexible, and hybrid by design.
Gary Thome is the Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for the software-defined and cloud technologies at Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE). Over his extensive career in the computer industry, Gary has authored 50 patents and architected numerous new product technologies. To read more articles from Gary, check out the HPE Shifting to Software-Defined blog.