Cloud computing for businesses saves time and money by boosting productivity, improving collaboration, and promoting innovation.
In a bold statement at last December’s IT Infrastructure, Operations and Cloud Strategies Conference in Las Vegas, Gartner, Inc. predicted that by 2025, 80% of businesses will completely migrate from on-premise datacenters to off-site locations such as the cloud. For leadership, that means beginning now to identify which on-site servers are still needed and whether they are the most efficient and cost effective data storage solutions.
For most, it likely makes far more sense to seriously consider making the transition to a cloud-based approach. Many organizations have already embraced cloud computing, but as the technology evolves and customer demands change, further readjustment will be made.
As we mark the half-way point of 2019, here are five cloud predictions and trends to watch for as the year plays out.
Cloud Computing for Businesses
Its sheer scalability, reliability, and high-fault tolerance has made cloud computing one of the most exciting and promising technologies in a generation. It’s evolution over the past two decades has changed the face of business in ways that once seemed unimaginable. While serverless continues to be much talked about, to date it has seen little deployment. It will likely continue to evolve as adoption ramps up, but right now organizations are more focused on adopting the cloud to power digital transformation efforts.
1. Multi-cloud architectures
Organizations want more choice. As a result, the hybrid model is already becoming a significant market segment, with nearly 60% of North American businesses now relying on co-location cloud platforms. For the record, that’s five times as many from just five years ago. With the release of Outpost last November, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has now joined Azure and Google in replacing one-cloud-fits-all approaches with a multi-cloud environment that uses a combination of on-premises and private and public cloud architectures, often from different cloud vendors. And with IBM’s acquisition of Red Hat last October, look for it to become the world’s leading hybrid cloud provider.
2. Open cloud technology
While many companies still use a single public cloud provider in tandem with their on-premise environment, it’s expected that as most make the switch to a multi-cloud strategy, open clouds will matter more than ever. Open clouds let your business freely choose which mix of services and providers are best for your needs and let you design your infrastructure across multiple environments. Though most companies are not there yet, look for more advanced organizations to embrace open source Kubernetes for administering, securing, and updating workloads.
3. A shift in IT culture
As companies embrace a hybrid approach, look for new job titles such as cloud architect, cloud project manager, and cloud automation engineer to become increasingly more common. New skills and a culture that is centered on cloud adoption will mark a big shift in the way IT teams work, with an emphasis on expertise in API management, cross-platform tool and automation, and data integration best practices.
4. Security first
As cloud computing for businesses grows, security will remain an issue that is still too often neglected. To ensure their data practices are both safe and compliant, developers will overcome challenges inherent to a hybrid cloud approach by integrating security into every facet of the app development, design, and deployment earlier in the process than was done with siloed applications. This should give your business greater app visibility, control, and protection.
5. Cloud reimagining with edge computing
As organizations find themselves in need of immediate access to data and other resources to serve their customers, they’ll increasingly look to edge computing. Though not as well known, experts are looking for edge computing to explode because of its ability to collect and process vast amounts of data in near real time. Companies will also be able to lower connectivity costs because as opposed to raw streams of sensor data, edge computing transmits only the most important data needed. When combined with cloud computing, businesses will realize faster response times, added security, dependable operation, and seamless integration with legacy devices.
Looking Beyond 2019
Innovation spurs greater innovation and there’s no doubt cloud computing for businesses will continue to evolve as more companies and industries fully embrace it to support their digital transformation. The coming months will offer greater opportunities to create a workspace that enables employees to interact regardless of where they are in the world. And outsourcing will free businesses from investing in hardware, software, and staff that may quickly become obsolete.
One day in the not too distant future what’s now labeled as “cloud” will simply be known as computing. In the meantime, savvy businesses will continue the shift to cloud computing to increase business efficiency and reduce costs.