The confusion around hybrid: Cloud isn’t for everyone, but everyone can use a bit of cloud

(c)iStock.com/Erik Khalitov

I was delighted to see so many folks attend our Tech Meet Up last week in London.  Not only was it a great networking opportunity, but we also hosted a stimulating panel that generated much discussion on the night.  Here I’ve captured a few takeaways.

The panel included Jeremy Bowman, Director of IT Operations at iland customer Fusion Business Solutions, and Peter Godden, Vice President EMEA for Zerto, one of our key partners. Discussion centred on the many reasons companies are increasingly turning to cloud, and in particular, what drove Fusion’s cloud adoption and strategy.

Jeremy talked about the fact that Fusion had initially considered building its own infrastructure versus outsourcing. Fusion however needed an agile, stable, fast and secure cloud and its internal set-up couldn’t match iland’s offering. Jeremy explained that when he was looking at cloud infrastructure, iland’s speed was critically important to the ongoing running of its operation. Security was also an important factor.

We also talked about the confusion around hybrid cloud in particular. It is hard to capture the real definition as hybrid means different things to different organisations, but in essence it is about moving from an on premise application to an outsourced service. You can then make more services available as required, ensuring users have the right access to the right data, while making sure it’s secure and stable.

Mobility and flexibility are key when moving to the cloud, and CIOs struggle with the idea of moving all services to a cloud-based system

Quocirca analyst, Bob Tarzey, asked whether we thought there would be a time when we will see everything in the cloud.  Jeremy feels that it entirely depends on the customer and whether they are happy with a complete move of their services and whether they feel their data is secure in the cloud.Peter’s perspective is that mobility and flexibility are key when moving to the cloud and that CIOs struggle with the idea of moving all services to a cloud-based system, which could be stalling cloud adoption.

A term that I’m finding is now being used more frequently is ‘bimodal IT’. One mode is about moving existing applications to the cloud and the other is where developers are designing new apps for the cloud. In the future I see a lot more developers designing apps for the cloud using microservices to help applications run at scale rather than moving existing apps to the cloud.

In summing up, we all agreed that cloud adoption will only accelerate. That said, organisations still see the cloud as storage in data centres in a rack somewhere else.  Once we get over this mind-set we can start thinking about bimodal IT and designing apps for the cloud. Cloud users are slowly changing as we move to a mobile workforce. Therefore the challenge will be around making sure cloud fits the user, and with new technologies, this is easier to do today.

Special thanks to Peter and Jeremy for making the discussion so interesting.  Our next event is sponsored by London Technology Week and is taking place on June 16 at 18.00 at the Soho Hotel in London.  I do hope you can make it.

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