Managed hybrid IT is rapidly emerging as the architecture of choice for organisations that have already invested in on-premise or data centre infrastructure, and want to leverage cloud technology to lower costs and increase efficiency.
It is important to ask the right questions before embarking on the managed hybrid IT journey.
A lot of organisations have invested substantial capital in data centre and other internal IT assets, and they need an ongoing return.
However, as technology demands grow and associated costs balloon, it makes sense for these businesses to outsource certain elements of their technology infrastructure - this decision puts them on the path to managed hybrid IT.
“Moving to a managed hybrid IT approach solves many challenges for companies,” says Stuart Mills, regional director A/NZ, CenturyLink.
“It lets them assemble a truly custom infrastructure, service, and delivery model for their business that can be changed at any time to meet changing market and business conditions.
“The managed hybrid IT model can include any number of outsourced IT services operating alongside existing internal systems. It reduces IT obsolescence risks, and can create a powerful and highly responsive infrastructure capability mix for a business.”
However, as companies begin their managed hybrid IT journey, they should start by first establishing their core business strategies and goals.
Once an organisation knows the ‘why’ of its decision to try the managed hybrid IT model, it can better determine the ‘who, what, and where’ involved in the outsourcing of external infrastructure and services involved.
CenturyLink recommends that businesses ask themselves three key questions before stepping onto the managed hybrid IT path:
1) What are your business drivers for change?
There is a broad range of business drivers for hybrid IT strategies. For example, managed hybrid IT delivers flexibility, saves money, can help keep the company competitive, or help it grow quickly.
Whatever the reason, once a business determines the primary business goal behind its decision to adopt a managed hybrid IT approach, it will be able to more clearly define which services to outsource first.
2) Who will manage the new model?
Some companies will choose to work with multiple IT services providers. However, to gain significant competitive advantage, companies will likely consolidate critical services with a best-of-breed provider.
Companies should choose providers based on minimising risk and identify providers that are known for excellence in several service areas.
3) Where will infrastructure be located?
While on-premise private clouds remain highly popular, public cloud adoptions will increase for specific workloads. Companies need to work out what information they want to keep for internal or private cloud environments, and what data is safe to be placed in public cloud environments.
As the public cloud option becomes more popular, organisations with data sovereignty concerns will want to investigate where the provider’s data centres are located geographically.
“However IT teams choose to configure their infrastructure, one thing is clear: they will need to move faster than ever before as their work becomes more closely aligned to core business goals; creating new products, new services, and new ways of working,” Mills adds.
“The managed hybrid IT model, implemented with adequate research and planning, will be the key that frees them up to do this.”