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Hybrid cloud is the ideal IT infrastructure model, says majority of IT execs

19 Nov 2020

Hybrid cloud is the ideal IT infrastructure model, according to a majority of global IT decision-makers.

86% of the 3,400 respondents in a survey from Nutanix cite hybrid cloud as the best option, and the study also found that those running hybrid environments are more likely to plan to focus on strategic efforts and to drive positive business impact.

The survey also measured the impact of COVID-19 on current and future IT decisions and strategy, with a key finding suggesting that the pandemic has shifted IT’s focus towards remote working support and enabling near-instant infrastructure deployments. These, in turn, can be catalysts for increased enterprise progress with cloud expansion.

Many respondents also reported an increased likelihood that they would offer more flexible work setups, strengthen their business continuity plans, simplify operations, and increase digital conferencing usage because of the pandemic. 

76% of surveyed IT decision-makers reported thinking more strategically about IT because of the pandemic, and nearly half (46%) have increased investments in hybrid cloud as a direct result of COVID-19.

The study also showed that reliance on multiple public clouds has risen, with 63% of respondents reporting using two or more public clouds — and this number is expected to rise to 71% in the next 12 months, according to Nutanix.

“In January, for many companies, technology was considered a basic function of a business, enabling core organisational processes. Today, technology has taken on an entirely new meaning,” says Nutanix chief information officer Wendy M. Pfeiffer.

“It is a complex strategy, and it makes or breaks a company’s long-term viability. COVID-19 has accelerated us into a new era of strategic IT and raised its profile considerably, and the findings from this year’s Enterprise Cloud Index reflect this new reality. 

“Hybrid cloud is the frontrunner, and it will continue to be as we navigate our mixing of physical and virtual environments and move away from doing business in a single mode.”

Other key findings of the report include:

Enterprises have taken vital steps toward reaching their IT operating model of choice

Many respondents report making a move towards successfully running a hybrid environment, including adoption of hyper-converged infrastructure in data centres.

Robust infrastructure changes are also on the horizon: respondents see, on average, hybrid cloud deployments increasing by more than 37 percentage points over the next five years, with a corresponding 15-point drop in non-cloud-enabled data centres.

Remote work is here to stay 

In 2020, only 7% of respondents reported having no full-time remote workers, dropping an astounding 20 percentage points from 27% in 2019. In light of this, improving IT infrastructure (50%) and work-from-home capabilities (47%) have become priorities for the next 12 to 18 months.

Strategic business outcomes, not economics, drive change today

Respondents said their primary motives for modifying their IT infrastructures are to get greater control of their IT resources (58%), gain the flexibility to meet dynamic business requirements (55%), and improve support for customers and remote workers (46%). 

By contrast, just 27% mentioned cutting costs as a driver.