As IT pros, you fully embrace the public cloud in your business, but management has been making noises about security concerns — they may not realize that the public cloud is probably better at security than the server farm shoved in the smallest possible room.
But a hybrid Cloud option (definition can be found here) gives you access to the services you want while appeasing the corporate heads by putting mission critical security control back in their hands. The hybrid Cloud market is projected to grow to over $79 million in 2018, and there are plenty of vendors interested in capitalizing on its popularity. Here are 3 benefits to employing a hybrid Cloud option for your business:
1. Keep it close to home.
The biggest benefit of a hybrid Cloud is keeping sensitive customer data and other protected records close to home. You aren’t sending social security numbers off to servers you don’t personally oversee. (Although that’s both a blessing and a curse; after all, Cloud storage companies such as Amazon have a vested interest in keeping security as tight as possible.)
If you have the facilities to keep your servers safe, secure, and running smoothly, having at least part of your operations in-house gives you additional flexibility. Some Cloud vendors are creating pre-constructed hybrid Cloud deployment packages, making it even easier to set up. You also have the option of an off-site private Cloud with hardware reserved for your use only. If you work in an industry that has strict data regulations, keeping the regulated data in the private Cloud keeps you compliant and avoids any costly data leaks down the road.
2. Specialty hardware.
Cloud vendors may do their best to accommodate hardware requests, but when it comes down to it, the only way to get the hardware exactly the way you like it is by doing it yourself. You don’t have to wait around for a work order at the Cloud service company for a server switch or a software upgrade. Instead, you have full control over the on-site servers. In addition, you can give older servers new life as part of the private Cloud that comprises the physical half of the hybrid Cloud equation.
3. Software and applications.
Avoiding a wide scale software deployment is a big advantage in a hybrid Cloud scenario. You also benefit from improved productivity when workers have access to Cloud services they use on a regular basis. You’ll still handle some end user support, but errors and other issues with the software get handled by the Cloud service provider instead of your overworked IT team.
You can also explore new applications without sinking a lot of money into licensing fees or scale up existing applications without dropping everything you’re doing to do a massive installation.
In addition, Cloud applications increase your ability to support a mobile workforce around the world. Whether you use that power for video conferencing in tropical locations or working in your pajamas is up to you, of course.
Hybrid Cloud and other types of Cloud technology continue to find their way into workplaces, from small businesses to massive enterprises, on a daily basis. This industry is only going to grow in size, so it’s better to prepare your preferred architecture now instead of a few years down the road. Before you stick to a completely private or public server option, explore the hybrid Cloud as a way to experience the best of both worlds. And, when in doubt, ask your trusted vendors and providers. They’ve likely worked with a number of Cloud providers or setups and can help point you in the right direction.
Brian Miller is the President of UTG, one of Atlanta and Augusta’s fastest-growing Managed Services and Cloud Providers. At UTG, we help our partners navigate the sometimes confusing terrain of Cloud computing as it relates to their business goals, across Georgia and beyond. If you need help, we're only a click away at utgsolutions.com or you can follow us on Twitter @utgsolutions.