Technology is evolving at an increasingly rapid pace and these changes can be overwhelming for businesses. Cloud computing is a big part of these recent changes, though it is more an evolution of the way we do business than a passing trend. It has become ubiquitous within IT; nearly 50% of enterprise companies in North America and Europe will invest in the cloud in 2013.
Cloud-based systems deliver apps and secure communications capabilities like email, to meet the highly specialized needs of companies. They help to support fully informed, better-coordinated information that assists leaders with strategic business decisions.
The benefits of the cloud are well documented. Reduced IT costs, fast and reliable deployment and increased productivity are just a few.
Businesses are no longer asking why the cloud should be implemented; they ask themselves how the cloud should be implemented. Here’s what you need to know about public, private and hybrid cloud computing options before implementing a solution.
Public clouds provide increased efficiency in shared resources. Architecture, platform and services are housed off-site, with access provided via the Internet. The myth about public virtualization is that systems are more vulnerable than in private clouds. However, the reality is that a cloud vendor’s core business is to manage IT, so they are prepared to handle security breaches and disasters. Public clouds are an appropriate option for businesses that:
- Need a collaborative environment for team projects.
- Require a sandbox to test and develop new applications and codes.
- Utilize applications like email that have been standardized across the enterprise.
Private cloud models provide the same functionality and benefits of public cloud computing. The difference is that with private clouds, architecture, platform and services are managed by IT departments on a private network, behind the corporate firewall. This eliminates concerns over data security and regulatory compliance. Private virtualization is a good option for companies that:
- Must comply with strict data privacy and compliance regulations.
- Rely on security and control of applications and data for business purposes.
- Possess IT resources that can efficiently and effectively manage cloud systems.
Hybrid clouds are comprised of technology resources that are managed both internally and externally. For example, a business might house unrestricted data in a public cloud solution, but continue to manage proprietary data in-house, for enhanced security. Hybrid cloud computing allows business information and applications to reside in the most efficient environment available.
Regardless of the IT service model a business pursues, security is critical. Businesses need to focus on cloud security factors like access control, authentication, encryption, and data confidentiality, all while adhering to industry standards. This ensures cost savings realized by moving to the cloud aren’t wasted.
Understanding which cloud computing model to implement means businesses can build an optimized virtual service platform, in alignment with business goals that manage collaboration.
Has your organization considered the benefits of public, private or hybrid cloud solutions? If so, let us know which IT service model you implemented and why in the comments.