Ahead in the Clouds

Aug 6 2019   11:09AM GMT

Hype vs. reality: Why some organisations are opting to de-cloud

Caroline Donnelly Profile: Caroline Donnelly

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In this guest post, Justin Day, CEO of hybrid cloud connectivity platform provider Cloud Gateway shares his thoughts one why some enterprises are choosing to pull back from off-premise life and de-cloud their IT.

The cloud promised to transform businesses; bringing speed, security and scale instantaneously. However, the hype around cloud and its benefits has led businesses to become blind to their requirements; moulding their needs to fit the cloud rather than the cloud to fit their needs.

In some cases this has led to organisations migrating a whole business structure to the cloud, which has caused many to suffer big losses.

Thankfully, company leaders are starting to open their eyes to a hybrid approach; understanding where the cloud can best support them and what elements are better suited to staying on-premise.

As such, many enterprises are now moving away from the cloud – also known as de-clouding (or cloud repatriation as some have coined it) – to create a cloud strategy that fits their business objectives and goals.

Costing up the cloud

Service providers shouted from the rooftops about cloud’s cost savings and benefits compared, to owning and operating datacentres. And, while it’s true that (typically) on premise datacentres are expensive, these costings are clear in comparison to the hidden costs of the cloud.

Cloud providers hide high costs with desirably low on-boarding costs and capital expenditure (CAPEX) to cover up the ongoing operating expenditure (OPEX). This is where enterprises get caught out, as it’s not migrating the whole datacentre that will reduce business costs, but using what you need in both the datacentre and in the cloud.

For data in the cloud, it’s imperative that all enterprises are implementing a sturdy cloud governance programme.

Businesses are becoming more savvy in understanding what they need, and Dropbox is a perfect example of this; in two years, the company saved $74.6m off its operational expenses since it ‘de-clouded’ from AWS and into its own datacentres.

Multi-cloud for extra security

Having all business services in the cloud also opens a range of security issues as not every cloud service will provide the right security to protect every aspect of the business. With such varying security requirements across a business, one cloud provider won’t be sufficient, and a multi-cloud approach is best to ensure security for sensitive data.

In contrast, a datacentre provides clear security processes. For example, it is easy to see where the door opens and where the door closes. Currently, with security risks rife, companies are rightly increasingly conscious about their security measures.

Going on-premise, where a company can retain control of their data, provides the satisfaction that both customer and company data is protected.

The term agility has lost its true meaning in recent years, with many cloud providers promising to provide an agile network they cannot deliver. Many lock enterprises into their network and don’t allow for any flexibility, which can be costly and inefficient.

Having a hybrid approach of both on-premise and in the cloud will give companies the ability and confidence to react quickly to customer needs.

De-cloud to de-risk

Furthermore, it reduces and manages risk by avoiding complete downtime if one operator goes down. It’s no longer enough to leave a customer waiting three days before coming back with a solution, or providing a new service for them, so housing services both on premise and in the cloud is hugely beneficial for keeping customers happy.

Migrating to the cloud is often perceived as easy, cheap and efficient. However, with the internet coming under more pressure with ever-increasing traffic from users, there’s only so much pressure it can withhold. And the complexities caused by internet-failure can be very damaging for businesses if not mitigated properly.

The future is absolutely a hybrid model and companies need to take advantage of both cloud and on-premise offerings to make sure they can best serve their customers as well as protect their business in both monetary value and security.

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