Hybrid IT Now A Standard Enterprise Model: Analysts

by CXOtoday News Desk    Apr 05, 2017


The IT market is on the verge of a major disruption. The need for IT to be more agile to support the growing business needs and at the same time keep a tab on costs is prompting CIOs to explore new ways to configure their IT infrastructures.

This is driving the growth of hybrid IT infrastructures, enabling CIOs to integrate their existing legacy systems with new and innovative options of utilizing IT to deliver unique experience to their customers. While hybrid IT infrastructure is not a new term in IT and has been there for years, according to a recent global survey conducted by 451 Research and sponsored by Dimension Data, Hybrid IT is becoming a standard enterprise model, thanks to the superfast, digital era. However, there are challenges, the primary one being, there’s no single playbook to get there.

Other challenges such as lack of trained personnel to manage hybrid IT environment, data migration challenges, issues with security, compliance and finally, lack of control, continue to haunt its adoption, said the study. The challenges differ across geographies. For example, the study showed, respondents in France, Singapore and South Africa most often noted high cost of deployment and maintenance. Malaysian firms listed hiring challenges, German firms mentioned limited data centre capacity and Indian firms listed seeking the right partner as the most common motivating factors.

“With data and processes shifting across multiple cloud and non-cloud environments, a new approach to management is called for. IT managers are under tremendous pressure to seek new ways to manage and secure multiple IT environments in an effective manner. Automation is important because it helps reduce the operating costs, as well as the pain caused by the growing complexity of business processes and management tasks. It is simply no longer appropriate or cost-effective for these tasks to be done manually,” Dimension Data Group CEO, Jason Goodall said: 

Data migration was another typical deployment challenge, with 44% of the respondents saying they found it challenging to determine which option is the best for a particular workload and to migrate workloads to new locations. While 38% of enterprises we surveyed claimed that they use automation to accelerate application migration, 48% said that migration at their company is manual and labour-intensive or that they use in-house resources. Moreover, data migration remains complex and expensive for most organizations, the study noted.

The study further revealed that enterprises are spending a significant portion of their IT budgets with third-party service providers on managed and professional services for various reasons – to lower cost, to free IT staff to focus on other projects, to improve security, and to provide specialised technical expertise. The research reveals that 41% of organisations work with multiple vendors and manage them themselves, and another 37% work with a single vendor that can offer a broad range of products and services which it builds and manages.

Gartner also released a new report containing a series of predictions about IT infrastructure services that said, 90 percent of organizations will adopt hybrid infrastructure management capabilities by 2020. [Read the full report here]

“As the demand for agility and flexibility grows, organisations will shift toward more industrialized, less-tailored options,” says DD Mishra, research director at Gartner. ”Organisations that adopt hybrid infrastructure will optimize costs and increase efficiency. However, it increases the complexity of selecting the right toolset to deliver end-to-end services in a multisourced environment.”

According to Kelly Morgan, Research Vice President, Services at 451 Research, managed services have become a key component of service delivery across a range of infrastructure and application products. “Service providers that can offer a comprehensive portfolio of managed services across the broadest set of infrastructure options are well positioned to meet the full set of enterprise cloud requirements,” said Morgan.

He stated, despite concerns, organizations are embracing next-generation networking technologies such as SDN and network functions virtualisation. Enterprises are using innovative/emerging technologies such as containers, big data solutions and software-defined networking (SDN) in productions scenarios and that is also pushing hybrid IT in the enterprise.

The researchers clearly believe that hybrid IT strategy’s success depends on an organization’s ability to integrate outsourced and in-house IT services to ensure smooth delivery of business capabilities to its customers. The next one year will see an increasing trend towards data center colocation, they believe, as the dominant delivery model as business organizations move to outsourced services while still retaining control over their IT infrastructure.