Hybrid or multi Cloud is becoming the new norm, the de facto standard. Progressive forward-thinking companies are choosing a mixture of public and private cloud services. Hybrid Cloud is a very useful and effective Cloud service, however there is a surprising amount of confusion over what Hybrid Cloud is. To understand whether Hybrid Cloud is right for your business, you must first look at the pros and cons of a public over a private Cloud. If you want to know more about what public, private, and hybrid Clouds are you can read our blog on the Types of Cloud Computing. Do not overlook competing internal agendas and politics as these can influence hybrid or multi Cloud adoption.
Private Cloud vs Public Cloud
The biggest difference between private Clouds and public Clouds are privacy and functionality. For public Cloud services, typically the cost structure depending on use is different, be it data, compute, or other IT resources and while it can be less private, the general public Cloud is an effective Cloud service.
As a rule, private Clouds are far more secure as they are either completely private or shared amongst a small group of organisations. With a private Cloud you can customise control, tailor it to specific business needs and meet certain security and regulatory requirements.
Public Clouds provide flexibility and agility and are ideal for fast access and they scale with ease. They are ideally suited to software development and testing, big data processing, applications with variable workloads or as part of a business disaster or recovery plan.
Private Clouds are considered ideal for storing sensitive and confidential information, while public Clouds are generally considered a good option for processing large amounts of data – think big data, analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence. Often a subset of an organisations data is temporarily copied to a public Cloud where there is almost endless compute capability to crunch vast data sets and to analyse information to drive business decisions.
The Hybrid Cloud Advantage
The advantage that comes with a hybrid Cloud is the ability to seamlessly move data and applications between a private and public Cloud, making for a more versatile IT infrastructure. Sensitive data can reside in a more secure and private Cloud but moved to public if it needs to be used for intense big data processing to gain business insights for example. The same can be done for large compute requirements, such as if there was a need for your business to do large scale analytics of records and data. If your business has to make these kinds of changes and investments on a regular basis, Hybrid Cloud could save you major unnecessary costs.
It can often be more cost effective running steady 24×7 workloads in a private Cloud and leveraging a public cloud as required. For an organisation taking first steps into a public Cloud this will also help you understand the cost curves associated with public Cloud services allowing for a planned transition of production workloads into the public Cloud and enable the organisation to place workloads where it makes the most sense, realising that this will likely change over time.
The ability to quickly turn on capability and services in a public Cloud allows organisations to develop and test software, run proof of value or pilots without the restrictions of internal processes and time associated with on-premise private infrastructure.
IT investments should be focused on making money, not saving money as has traditionally been the view shared by many organisations. Those that view data as a cost to the business are fundamentally looking at it the wrong way.
When leveraged correctly, data is your greatest asset – a well-architectured hybrid or multi Cloud allows a forward thinking, digitally focused organisation to move well clear of their competition.