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The cloud is a diverse and complex topic, and keeping track of the numerous options and types of services for varying needs isn’t easy. Let’s explore what’s driving the enterprise cloud journey forward, based on the findings of a 2021 International Data Corporation (IDC) study on cloud computing in Germany.
1. Modernization drives cloud adoption
According to IDC analysts, one in three organizations plans to comprehensively modernize their IT infrastructure to achieve greater flexibility and agility.
This is because achieving the required scalability, automation and coordination with their existing infrastructure may require great effort and comes at a high cost. At the same time, managers face the challenges of enhancing their IT security in the face of increasing cybersecurity risks, and designing their systems to meet numerous compliance requirements.
The IDC study shows that most organizations use the cloud to modernize even business-critical applications. They are migrating existing applications or developing applications from scratch to take full advantage of the cloud, and they are predominantly considering a cloud-native approach.
2. The hybrid model is the first choice
To reap the benefits of cloud computing, it is critical for organizations to have the right architecture. Of the organizations surveyed for the IDC study, 80% say they use different cloud types to match their specific requirements – and the hybrid model is clearly dominant.
Organizations tend to focus on working with one hyperscaler to expand their collaboration step by step. They also rely on multiple approaches such as managed/hosting, colocation and working with other data center providers to help them integrate and orchestrate services and solutions. Large organizations often pursue a strategy that includes multiple hyperscalers.
3. You can’t do it without an approach like CloudOps
Collaboration between sites and business units, as well as within supply chains, is happening more frequently. This requires new architectures and changes to process design. The use of individual cloud services does not help here; rather, organizations need an open infrastructure framework with the cloud as a core element. This framework also supports modernizing applications and implementing cloud-native approaches.
The high level of complexity of modern cloud solutions can be managed using CloudOps. Practices familiar from DevOps – such as agile project management, shifting-left when integrating, and deploying services, automation, monitoring and ongoing feedback to reporting systems – can also be applied to cloud operations. For example, decision-makers surveyed by the IDC are already using tools for performance monitoring (25%), capacity optimization (24%) and cloud compliance (24%).
4. Colocation services are on the rise
For German companies, colocation is an important component of their IT and cloud strategy. Almost 80% of surveyed organizations in the IDC report say they’re already using colocation services or plan to do so. Their reasons? Compared with an in-house data center, cloud offers higher security standards, faster provision of resources and access to the latest technologies.
Organizations are thus able to optimize their IT operations and achieve efficiency gains. Colocation resources can also play out their advantages in edge computing. The IDC predicts that by 2024, more than 75% of edge site infrastructure worldwide will be used and operated using an as-a-service model.
5. Tailored services bridge the gap for missing resources
Many organizations have neither the time nor the resources to support their growing IT infrastructure around the clock. Well-trained IT professionals are hard to find, and internal teams are often already stretched with day-to-day tasks.
With a managed service, organizations hand over all or some of their cloud migration to an external partner. Depending on the model, this partner takes over the planning, provision and control of all cloud activities, or assists in individual areas. They can help with migration and the selection and orchestration of cloud services to ongoing maintenance and scaling. Effective approaches and frameworks ensure a fast and seamless transition to the cloud and guarantee a smooth change-management process.
“More and more companies are adopting a hybrid cloud strategy, relying on colocation services to maximize the efficiency of their IT infrastructure,” says Konstantin Hartmann, Vice President, Sales & Commercial, of Global Data Centers Europe, Middle East & Africa at NTT.
“In addition to scalable resources and the highest security standards, colocation data centers offer a secure connection to all popular public cloud providers as well as other locations. This makes them the interconnectivity hub for hybrid cloud and IT infrastructures.”
He adds: “Colocation is fundamentally interesting for any company that wants to run its IT securely and with a high level of performance without having to build its own data center. Instead, those responsible can focus fully on their core business.”
Oliver Harmel, Vice President, Managed Services Go-to-Market, at NTT, says: “The decision to move to the cloud represents a major shift in an organization’s IT strategy, bringing with it myriad benefits – from cost savings and optimization to scalability and ease of maintenance.”
However, he cautions, it also raises important questions about platform choice, IT governance and cybersecurity, overall management and a host of other considerations. “These are issues that many organizations will not be able to resolve themselves, given their limited resources,” he says. “For a move to the cloud, these companies need an experienced partner they can trust to guide them on their journey from planning and migration to management and modernization.”
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