How Cloud And Disaster Recovery Trends Will Impact 2020 Digital Transformation Strategies

How Cloud And Disaster Recovery Trends Will Impact 2020 Digital Transformation Strategies

How Cloud And Disaster Recovery Trends Will Impact 2020 Digital Transformation Strategies

Last year was dominated by digital transformation initiatives, cloud-first strategies and a deepening realization that disaster recovery (DR) planning needs to take a front seat when discussing IT transformation plans. Because of this, we saw two important trends in 2019: the normalization of clouds and growing market demand for better DR solutions. These key trends will continue to have an impact on business transformation in 2020 as organizations look for cloud-agnostic products to speed app development and further embrace the cloud as an affordable and effective option for DR.

The Normalization Of Clouds Prompts IT Transformation

According to my company’s 2019 report, the most common steps respondents have taken to modernize and transform IT revolve around implementing cloud strategies. These include the deployment of private cloud infrastructure (43%), public cloud infrastructure (42.5%), a hybrid cloud environment (35.2%) and multiple cloud environments (29.1%).

It’s no surprise that a huge chunk of the market has embraced the cloud, speeding its normalization in the enterprise. Back in the day, there were three big storage infrastructure providers — IBM, HP and EMC — creating three different silos with different features, zero interoperability and total lock-in. The advent of VMware and its uniform storage protocols commoditized the three big vendors and made them transparent to the end user. This eliminated the lock-in and opened the door for many significant innovations from startups. It’s crystal clear that VMware and virtualization paved the way for the creation of public clouds.

The industry has now come full circle with three big cloud providers: Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud Platform. The cloud is the new silo (ironic, given the name and concept). If we believe that the future of progress depends on the cloud, then it is inevitable that we need to normalize the clouds. Doing this requires two things: a uniform compute plane and a uniform data plane. VMware and Kubernetes have won the race to provide that uniform compute plane. The missing link is the uniform data plane, which will be created due to market forces.

Normalizing the clouds will, in turn, enable rapid new innovations in the market — just like normalizing the old big iron vendors propelled us to a better future.

The Simplicity Of SaaS Transforms DR

Traditionally DR has been a manual, labor-intensive and expensive process that requires interconnecting myriad different products, creating a complicated and unreliable web of steps and processes in order to execute a DR plan. Turning DR into a SaaS product, which the market now calls disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS), has proven to be a simple and inexpensive way for organizations to get an on-demand DR option compared to traditional approaches. With increasing threats, such as ransomware, and with the flexibility of the public cloud, companies are reconsidering their DR plans and are looking to simpler, SaaS-based products that offer on-demand recovery for less.

Looking to 2020, we’ll see these trends develop in more dramatic and consequential ways.

The Rise Of Cloud Agnosticism In The Enterprise

While executives are pushing cloud-first strategies, cloud vendors have realized that most customers aren’t prepared to fully transition to the cloud. To address this, cloud companies will offer on-premise solutions that give enterprises the experience they expect with a slow and measured migration to the cloud. An example of this is AWS Outposts.

Organizations don’t really have a preference for one cloud vendor versus another; their choices are mostly made based on cost and SLAs. Businesses don’t want to be stuck in any one cloud and are seeking ways to become cloud-agnostic. They are looking to leverage SaaS services to build out their applications and achieve faster time to market for their apps. This is a secular trend that is going to accelerate. There are all kinds of SaaS applications that customers can leverage, and this will dramatically change how companies develop their applications.

Ultimately, the cloud is just a means to an end so that companies building their multicloud strategies for 2020 will look to buy products or services that make their applications cloud-agnostic. It’s the only way to futureproof their business against cloud vagaries or lock-ins. Businesses that want to adopt cloud at a faster rate will also seek to avoid rewriting applications when moving from on-prem to cloud. This offers the least friction, with the biggest benefit.

This article originally appeared on forbes.com To read the full article and see the images, click here.

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