‘Cloud first’, because Cloud will Last

07-Aug-2019 10:43 AM

Posted by Prashanth GJ, CEO, Technobind

We are not new to the “data is the new business asset” messaging anymore. The increase in investments around data, and technologies that can unleash the actual potential of data has in fact been phenomenal. The only other topic which has gathered so much attention is probably where that data resides.

Statistics reveal that more and more of that data is now residing on the cloud - quite unsurprisingly. Imagine this: in just two years, public cloud storage spend is estimated to reach the cross-over point of 51 percent by overtaking storage systems spend for the first time ever!

Cloud has been a strategic destination for storage for all types of organizations, with the cloud storage cost continuing to decline. There has been as many as 67 price decreases in AWS storage since 2006!

On one hand, the volume of data stored on cloud is growing at a humungous rate. But, what about the other aspects of data lifecycle? Can organizations put their data in the cloud and sit tight?

How about data migration aspects, moving data securely across clouds, and protecting/managing all that data?

All of this is becoming great business opportunities for partners who have a cloud play.

Businesses are turning to cloud for virtually all of their modern enterprise business processes. Here are some interesting numbers: by 2025, 80 percent of enterprises will migrate entirely away from on-premise models and close their on-premise data centers (Gartner). By 2020, 92 percent of workloads will be processed by cloud data centers; just 8 percent will be processed by traditional data centers (Cisco).

Very clearly, investments are shifting - from legacy/maintenance spend towards innovation spend. And cloud economics highly favours this shift.

Data management, a great starting point

Data protection and backup is cited as the ‘most impactful cloud project on the business’ by more than 75 percent of IT leaders in a Commvault survey conducted earlier.

Cloud-first and cloud-only strategies are thus becoming mainstream for data protections and data management, including in markets like India.

There are some highly compelling factors that drive this transition in the market. Cost savings, to start with, is extremely appealing on a cloud model. Some of the cloud-based products that we have in our portfolio offer up to 50 percent TCO reduction for customers.

Besides, the traditional methods like tape-based backup systems are gradually becoming outdated as the volumes of data that need to be protected hit the roof. Scalability is thus another driver towards cloud models. Data protection is in fact one of the first IT functions to migrate to the cloud.

The other factor, which I see having a very high impact on Indian organizations, is how regulatory changes are going to drive data management models in the future. I think in the next couple of years or so, many emerging markets like India will have more definite privacy laws that mandate where and how data can be processed and used. We witnessed a clear change post the introduction of GDPR itself—which encouraged organizations to adhere and be more aware of data protection laws. Cloud will emerge as a clear winner here, as organizations strive to sail through regulatory changes.

Future is cloud

This year, according to Garter, as many as 30 percent of mid-size organizations are going the cloud way for backup—up from just 5 percent last year. Cloud will undoubtedly emerge as the de-facto standard for data and related domains.

I think the biggest competitive advantage for partners will be their ability to add value at each stage of their customer’s cloud transition process. So it’s important to have a holistic approach and an apt portfolio for cloud, to be able to move away from a piecemeal approach to technology.

Every single organization is under some form of cloud journey today. Quite a few of them would have started that journey with storage and business continuity. But the journey will continue; so are the opportunities for partners who make technology smarter, cheaper and easier to use.