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By David Johnson, Director of Strategic Architecture EMEA at Domo, explains why organisations are adopting a hybrid-cloud strategy, and the cost optimisation this presents.

Over the past 10 years or so, the cloud has been truly tried and tested. Companies spanning all sectors are making use of the cloud to help drive their business solutions, even those who once felt skeptical about its stability.

The hybrid-cloud model gives companies flexibility, allowing for some solutions to be stored within on-premise servers, and others to be kept in the cloud. This strategy can therefore suit a wide range of businesses, whether more traditional, or unconventional.

What are the overall business benefits to adopting a hybrid-cloud strategy?

There are two angles to dissect here: hybrid-cloud strategy vs. multi-cloud strategy, or some combination of the two. We’ve seen a persistent emergence from CDO and CTO meetings recently about both strategies, and an overarching merger of the two where data and applications can reside in multiple public clouds as well as private infrastructure.

The multi-cloud strategy comes with a number of benefits, such as a hedge against vendor lock-in, flexibility and selection of best-of-breed applications for specialised tasks, as well as cost-optimisation.

What we are hearing about hybrid-cloud, specifically why to move from pure public cloud to also running your own servers, is cost. There was massive migration from on-premise infrastructure to the public clouds, however in some cases, there has been a reversal where companies are repatriating workloads back from public clouds to bring down costs. For some, intellectual property, extreme data sensitivity, or data sovereignty could be an angle, but that concern seems to have largely subsided in recent years for most types of data.

One of the most important elements here is that the surrounding technology for orchestration, management, and creating a logical layer that abstracts public/private cloud and physical data location, has improved by an order of magnitude. This is all abstracted from the end-user, and they don’t care where the data sits.

How does the adoption of a hybrid-cloud strategy lead to cost optimization in business?

The total cost is often significantly cheaper than running everything on a public cloud for scaled workloads. This includes everything from internal database administration, to talent management and provisioning hardware. There is also some merit to having provisioned hardware you can make unlimited use of, rather than worrying about running up a public cloud bill or burning credits. Interestingly, the message was the opposite a few years back. The right answer is striking the correct balance.

In addition to this, the pandemic has introduced a new set of challenges and opportunities for recalibration in a lot of areas, for better and worse. We’ve seen more scrutiny around costs and ways to rethink a data strategy that both increase performance and slashes costs. Data has always been a hugely important cornerstone for the financial sector, but it’s now on a completely different scale. Almost every function of a company can now be quantified into databases or analytics, offering businesses a magnifying glass into the habits or demands of their customers and operations.

It is this ‘live analysis’ of the customer and their behaviours that allows even the larger enterprises to be able to adapt to the market not only at speed, but with reassurance that investment, whether it be into product or marketing, is being made in the right areas. The knock on effect of this use in modern BI is simply reacting to the market quicker than your competitors, not only gaining a potential financial advantage, but also driving improvement in the general customer experience, which supports the uplift in new customers and the loyalty of existing ones.

About the author: David has ten years of experience delivering and consulting on business intelligence analysis around the world. From breaking ground on the world’s largest (at the time) KPI library to deploying Domo’s product offering to 50,000 people at a multinational conglomerate, David enjoys understanding how companies operate and how he can help them resolve complex issues using data analytics. In his current role, he oversees proof-of-concept and proof-of-value efforts to help customers realise value and derive insights from real-time data.

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