“Hybrid cloud architecture stands as a testament to the evolution of cloud computing, offering organizations the ability to harness the benefits of both public and private clouds.”
Hybrid cloud architecture is a formidable solution approach that combines the strengths of on-premises infrastructure and public cloud services. It’s a mixed environment that allows users to host applications either on premise Private cloud or any public cloud to begin with. At the same time a true hybrid cloud architecture offers the flexibility to move the workload across clouds as when business demands.
The cloud has transformed scalability, dependability and cost-effectiveness in managing applications and workloads. However, not all enterprises are positioned to migrate their entire workload to the cloud. Certain applications come with specialised prerequisites that the cloud might not adequately address. Security and compliance concerns can also loom large.
According to Google’s findings, a striking 41.4 per cent of global technology and business leaders are poised to amplify their investments in cloud-based services and products due to the prevailing economic climate. A noteworthy 33.4 per cent are contemplating a shift from legacy enterprise software to cloud-driven tools, while 32.8 per cent are evaluating the migration of their on-premises workloads to the cloud. As enterprises grapple with this transformative shift, several considerations warrant their attention.
Progressing from traditional data centres to hybrid multi-cloud architectures
The global cloud journey began when there was a need for enterprises to manage multiple data centres. Each of these data centres functioned as an independent entity, supervised by distinct teams of administrators. However, challenges in infrastructure agility cropped up. These data centre teams often found themselves grappling with sluggish implementation of business initiatives due to lengthy processes for provisioning and readiness.
Infrastructure procurement process and deployment was time consuming with the delays impacting business initiatives and time to market, leading to a search for alternatives. The delay impeded business operations, leading to a search for alternatives. The most compelling solution was transitioning to a public cloud environment, which expedited the onboarding of necessary infrastructure for business applications and initiatives. It streamlined the process, enabling rapid provisioning and resource allocation. Yet, it became evident that not every application was suitable for migration to the public cloud. Some applications, due to stringent compliance requirements or the need for tight data control, had to remain entrenched in on-premises environments. The bifurcation resulted in public cloud data centres and private data centres.
Finally, the hybrid cloud model emerged, enabling the simultaneous use of private and public cloud resources. The hybrid approach facilitated the seamless movement of applications and data between the two environments, offering the flexibility necessary for operational optimisation.
The 2022 State of DevOps Report found that approximately 26 per cent of companies used multiple public clouds, marking an increase from the 21 per cent reported in 2021. Also, the adoption of hybrid cloud solutions surged from 25 per cent to 42.5 per cent.
The landscape evolved further as enterprises began embracing multiple public cloud providers to cater to specific needs. The concept of true hybrid cloud expanded to encompass “hybrid multi-cloud,” which involves both private data centres and public cloud vendors. The transformation was spurred not only by technical imperatives but also cultural shifts within enterprises. The advantages of pay-as-you-go models, scalability and agility in public clouds, could be realised by meticulous planning, sophisticated migration strategies and calibrated operational adjustments. The costs entailed in migrating to and from public clouds underscored the importance of methodical planning.
According to the Flexera 2023 State of the Cloud Report, most companies have recognised the merits of both public and private clouds. A staggering 96 per cent of companies have ventured into the public cloud sphere, harnessing its adaptability and scalability. Concurrently, 76 per cent have embraced private clouds, capitalising on the granular control and security they offer.
Navigating the hybrid multi-cloud landscape
An industry study revealed that 85 per cent of Indian companies have embraced a hybrid cloud strategy, a move intended to accelerate digital transformation. However, majority of the surveyed businesses are grappling with integrating their cloud environments cohesively.
The appeal of the cloud lies in its scalability and cost-effectiveness. However, embarking on the cloud journey necessitates meticulous Assessment and planning, Design application architecture, integration tools, security, Resource planning and optimization, Skilled resources. Enterprises must evaluate their existing infrastructure, identify applications amenable to migration, scrutinize public cloud offerings and devise suitable migration strategies. Customers are looking for capable partners and Hitachi Vantara with its Robust infrastructure solutions and experienced professionals are helping customers to onboard their hybrid cloud journey.
Organisations must also prioritise operational empowerment and skill enhancement. Cloud is expected to generate 14 million jobs in 2026 in India, growing at a 3x rate, according to NASSCOM. Effectively managing hybrid cloud environments requires a cultural shift and the strategic upskilling of operations teams.
Achieving success with the hybrid cloud
In conclusion, Hybrid cloud architecture promises to be as dynamic as it is transformative. As industries evolve, hybrid cloud will transcend sectorial boundaries, enriching not only domains, such as insurance but also manufacturing, BFSI and beyond. Organizations will seek the seamless convergence of public cloud services and on-premises environments for agile workload management, optimal cost structuring and improved operations. Through planning, innovation and partnerships, enterprises can navigate hybrid cloud architectures for sustained growth and success.
In the digital age, efficiency and agility are paramount for business success. Hybrid cloud architecture stands as a testament to the evolution of cloud computing, offering organizations the ability to harness the benefits of both public and private clouds. By strategically combining these models, businesses can achieve unparalleled scalability, cost savings, security, and innovation. As technology continues to advance, hybrid cloud remains a cornerstone of modern IT strategies, empowering organizations to build a resilient and efficient foundation for their digital endeavors. Through careful planning, integration, and adaptation, enterprises can realize the true potential of cloud efficiency in a hybrid world.
Sujith Vijayan, APAC Technical Lead – Data Centre Modernization, Cloud and Industrial Solutions, Hitachi Vantara.