Hybrid cloud: the way forward for your business?

Mixing private and public cloud infrastructure could be the best way to solve your hosting headache

By now, most business owners will realise that they can benefit from cloud computing in one way or another. Making sense of exactly how, is the next logical step, and it’s not always easy. The difficulty could be down to the fact that so many people are discussing the cloud at the moment, or simply because the market is expanding so quickly.

When you do eventually choose to go ahead with migration, you’ll be faced with a number of decisions. One, however, is particularly prominent: public or private? The benefits of completely outsourcing your cloud infrastructure to a dedicated provider are plentiful, but it’s easy to see why you might be concerned about security. This is why taking a hybrid approach could be the one of the best business decisions you ever make.

Put simply, hybrid solutions are great for those who aren’t quite ready to commit fully to a complete migration – a halfway house, if you like. The decision could even depend on the industry in which you operate. A financial business, for example, might want to rely on a public solution for email hosting and a private system for the storage of particularly sensitive data. The mix can be tailored appropriately.

Flexibility is another key advantage. If your private cloud infrastructure is sufficient for most of the year but then struggles during seasonal spikes, it’s possible to expand temporarily by taking advantage of a public service. The upturns don’t even have to be predictable either – if an unexpected heatwave arrives and customer enquiries rise as a result, you’re in a position to quickly accommodate the strain without investing too much. This kind of scalability can be invaluable.

With the cloud, then, it’s important not to see it as an ‘all or nothing’ situation. Take your time and be sure to find a solution that suits your needs.