If you’re a little bit confused about cloud infrastructure (and you're not alone, many people are) and want to understand what the best cloud model is for your organisation, read this post.
Below I look at different cloud models so you can decide what the best cloud strategy is for your organisation.
Choosing the right cloud
There are two black and white choices. Private cloud and public cloud. However, there are grey areas too. You could opt for a combination of both, using the private cloud for some systems and functions and the public cloud for others – a hybrid cloud. Alternatively it might be best to go for a hybrid cloud / on-premise approach, putting some systems in the cloud and retaining others on-premise.
There’s no on-size-fits-all solution, it will depend on your organisation and your specific IT requirements. However, with a better idea of the benefits and limitations of different approaches, you’ll be able to develop your own unique cloud strategy.
Cloud service providers, like Microsoft, own and manage Public Clouds. Their clients, you and I, share the cloud and benefit from the economies of scale because infrastructure costs are spread across all users.
Key benefits of the Public Cloud
Pay-as-you-go model. You only pay for what you need,
Scale on demand. There is no capacity limitation, at new users or new services as needed,
No cost of ownership. Maintenance, upgrades etc. are all managed by the cloud service provider,
Up-to-date technology. Access the latest technology with no capital investment.
Limitations of the Public Cloud
Security. Customers don’t control the security of the public cloud, however it’s in the interests of cloud service providers to have robust security policies and proactive tools to prevent breaches,
Functionality limitations. All customers have access to the same cloud solutions, it’s a one-size-fits-all solution.
If your organisation requires greater control over security, management and functionality, a Private Cloud is unique to you. Built exclusively for your business it delivers the agility of the public cloud with a more customisable solution.
Key benefits of the Private Cloud
Security. Inherently more secure, making it more suitable for organisations with strict data, regulation and governance requirements,
Customisable. Private clouds are built with all the functionality and specific IT requirements of the customer,
Limitations of the Private Cloud
No on-demand scalability. Unlike the public cloud the physical infrastructure of the private cloud is the customer’s responsibility,
Entry costs. The cost of building a private cloud is far greater than using public cloud services,
Costs of scaling. If the physical infrastructure of the private cloud needs to be increased to all the organisation to scale, more costs are incurred. Again, far greater than the pay-as-you-go public cloud model.
As mentioned before, it doesn’t have to be a straightforward choice between public and private, of cloud and on-premise. Many organisations find a hybrid model the best approach from a security and cost perspective.
For an overview of how the hybrid cloud works and when to use it, this blog post will help.
If you would like to discuss your IT requirements in more detail, get in touch to arrange a consultation or for an informal chat about your needs. You can also find out more about our cloud and infrastructure services here.
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