Hybrid cloud utilization is not a matter of “if we should do this?” It has become a matter of “how,” with enterprises working with cloud service providers to create a mix of solutions that best meets their unique needs and growth plan. According to the 2017 State of the Cloud Survey, the vast majority (85 percent) of enterprises are engaging in a multi-cloud strategy.
However, while hybrid cloud strategies enable enterprises to get the most out of their IT and scale in a cost-effective way, there are key considerations that should be incorporated into planning to ensure your IT structure is scalable and secure.
Avoid rogue environment utilization.
Rogue environments often offer less visibility, control and customization while presenting significant security and compliance concerns. IT decision makers will turn to these solutions when facing an immediate need to scale or when their budget doesn’t allow extensive capital outlay. But there are other options on the table. The key differentiator among cloud service providers is their ability to offer hybrid cloud solutions with centralized management and analytics.
Don’t abandon your legacy IT.
It is important to avoid pressure to reinvent the wheel as you adopt new technologies. Legacy applications that are operating well should be preserved and incorporated into your broader hybrid strategy. Work with your data center/cloud services provider to find out how to best capitalize on these investments.
Centralize monitoring and management into one platform.
Pulling raw data from multiple sources and manually analyzing that data is very, very time consuming. Without a fully integrated platform, it is nearly impossible to use this data to make valuable decisions regarding how to manage your environments. IT is constantly changing, from power utilization to attempted security breaches, real-time visibility is pivotal in avoiding costly disruptions.
Ensure your SLAs clearly outline security and compliance responsibilities.
Service Level Agreements are important when defining the who, what, where, when and how of IT management. They clearly outline responsibilities, infrastructure management and uptime guarantees. Other key aspects of these agreements are security and compliance. Compliance standards are always changing and the volume of attempted breaches is skyrocketing. Make sure your SLA takes all of your unique requirements and assigns specific roles, expectations and guarantees when it comes to maintaining secure and compliant environments.
Build an in-depth application mapping plan that includes dependency requirements. Before distributing your applications among varied cloud solutions, you’ll want to engage in application mapping with your provider. Application mapping helps you understand how to integrate your environments to avoid disruption and inefficiency. Also, having a consolidated view into how your applications engage with one another and where they are housed will also help you build an information technology disaster recovery plan.
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