Whether you’re planning a move to hybrid cloud or not, your business almost certainly needs a plan for using hybrid IT. Enterprises today need to manage a mix of data center strategies that include public, private, and hybrid clouds; virtual machines; legacy, unvirtualized servers; and off-site hardware in colocation facilities.
Hybrid Cloud Isn’t a Quick Fix Solution
Even if hybrid cloud were the ultimate solution to your business technology problems, getting to that solution takes time. You can’t build a hybrid cloud unless you’ve got a working private cloud. Once you’ve got the private cloud built, integration with the public cloud for cloud bursting or splitting data and functionality between public and private clouds will take time to fully implement and complete the transition.
Hybrid Cloud Doesn’t Solve All Problems
Not all of your applications will move to the hybrid cloud. Some are too sensitive for data or processing to move outside your data center. Some legacy applications don’t match cloud operating systems or fit the cloud architecture, and plans to rewrite the architecture don’t exist or won’t be completed for years. Many applications run well on virtual machines on local hardware and lack any compelling case to move them to either public or private clouds.
Hybrid IT is Inevitable
As a result of those hybrid cloud limitations, it’s inevitable that your environment will retain a mix of cloud and legacy infrastructures. While a mixed environment adds complexity to data center management and operations, it can be more cost effective than re-architecting applications to make them fit the cloud—as long as the organization makes smart decisions around using each technology option.
The main challenges of managing hybrid IT have to do with making the disparate components feel as if they’re part of a single infrastructure. Today’s tools offer data center managers dashboards that let them view the status of cloud, virtual machines, and physical servers on a single screen. Software-defined network and storage help on-site resources offer the same flexibility and agility as cloud-based systems.
By building a hybrid IT infrastructure, organizations are able to evaluate bandwidth, data transfer costs, security, required performance levels, need for access to underlying hardware, and regulatory environments to select the best deployment model for each application. Specific applications and technologies can be outsourced while the enterprise technology team focuses on critical initiatives.
It’s important to realize that effective hybrid IT is the result of deliberate choices in technology, not the accidental result of independent projects and decisions that result in IT being responsible for a hodgepodge of technologies. When selected as a strategic direction, hybrid IT boosts the ability of IT to support the business. When IT ends up supporting multiple technologies by default, it’s a drain on resources instead.
Create a Plan to Support Your Hybrid IT
Begin evaluating your hybrid IT needs by evaluating the IT needs of each business area. Some departments have a greater need for controls and regulatory compliance, while others need to be agile and support rapid delivery. Once you understand the demands on IT, you can choose align your IT infrastructure and IT team to provide the appropriate infrastructure and support on a business unit by business unit basis.
Are you using hybrid IT by design or by default? dcVAST can help you assess your infrastructure needs and achieve well-managed hybrid IT that lets you use the most appropriate technology to meet each business need. Contact us to learn more about gaining the benefits of hybrid IT.