How are businesses implementing their hybrid multicloud strategies?

By | 4 minute read | February 6, 2020

From time to time, we invite industry thought leaders to share their opinions and insights on current technology trends to the IBM Systems IT Infrastructure blog. The opinions in these posts are their own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of IBM.

I interviewed Misha Rangel, Senior Product Marketing Manager for IBM Systems, to share her insights on a recent enterprise hybrid multicloud study that was commissioned by IBM Systems and conducted by Forrester Consulting.

One of the key findings mentioned in the report is that on-premises solutions continue to play a key role in IT infrastructure spending decisions, with 90 percent of IT decision makers agreeing that on-premises infrastructure is a critical part of their hybrid cloud strategies.

Another key finding of the report is that IT decision makers anticipate that more than half of mission-critical workloads and 47 percent of data-intensive workloads will be run either on premises or in an internal private cloud within the next two years. This does not mean that organizations have stopped investing in on premises. Misha goes into this topic in greater detail during our discussion.

Another key finding is that companies that delay IT infrastructure upgrades are opening themselves up to serious vulnerabilities.

Forrester surveyed 350 IT decision makers to share their insights on developing a hybrid multicloud strategy. Some of the study highlights include:

  • the vital role of on-premises infrastructure
  • why refreshes and upgrades are so important
  • the best mix of on-premises cloud technologies


[00:34] Avrohom: IBM just published the findings of an IT infrastructure study conducted by Forrester. Can you help us understand what the current trends are for IT infrastructure spending?

Misha: At a high level, something that we found validated within the survey results was that it truly is a hybrid multicloud world out there. People are increasing infrastructure investments on all aspects; not only with public cloud, which is really not a surprise to us, but somewhat surprising is the amount of the increase in investment companies are making outside of public cloud, in other infrastructure, such as on premises as well as with private cloud services.

[01:44] Avrohom: What’s driving these conversations around the IT infrastructure refresh?

Misha: When it comes to refresh, something that is driving the conversation is really about hardware end of service. It’s like any other product that has a warranty expiring, that’s going to force the conversation on “Do we renew? Do we upgrade to a new product, or do we look at other solutions?” The end of service has always driven the upgrade and refresh conversations. What we’re also seeing is that those conversations are evolving to be more strategic in nature, because these are the times when companies need to revisit where their workloads sit. They may go through one of these refreshes every few years, and in a few years’ time, workloads have changed. They need to reevaluate and make sure that everything is working the most efficiently and the most cost-effectively. So, we’re seeing a change, in these conversations becoming more strategic.

[03:03] Avrohom: You mentioned the warranty, and as you know, as soon as your warranty expires, everything breaks down! Many companies are delaying upgrading their infrastructure, for various reasons. Be it budget cuts, lack of resources, or something else. What are the ramifications to delaying an infrastructure upgrade?

Misha: It’s interesting, because the fear of an end of service is everything — all of a sudden, things aren’t going to work anymore. However, that’s rarely the case. What ends up happening is that a company is very slowly opening themselves up to vulnerabilities; and very serious vulnerabilities at that. Some of the top concerns that become bigger risks when a refresh is delayed include security concerns. That’s a huge one. Also, you start experiencing performance delays which can have a ripple effect in impacting employee productivity and client experience. So, it’s kind of one of those slow boil instances where it doesn’t happen all at once, and it’s easy to kick that can down the road. But when that does happen, all of a sudden you’re waking up to a big problem.

[04:34] Avrohom: For sure! We talked about security, and not a day goes by when you don’t hear about data breaches. So, step one, you have to make sure that you’re running the latest software, which might require an up-to-date hardware in order to properly secure your environment.

[04:54] Misha: Absolutely! Security doesn’t stop at the software level. Hardware has a security component as well. So, many times, if from a hardware perspective, your data is secure, at that core level, then you’re reducing risk at the software, or at that peripheral level.

[10:25] Avrohom: Where can people go to learn more about the Forrester IT Infrastructure Study?

Misha: Head here.