4 Business Advantages of a Hybrid Cloud

Imagine doubling your company’s efficiency without overhauling your entire IT infrastructure. 

That’s the value proposition of a hybrid cloud, and it’s becoming more popular by the day.

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) often face the challenge of balancing scalability with cost-effectiveness. You want your operations to grow, while keeping costs reasonable. Typically, achieving that kind of balance with traditional infrastructure options is difficult.

In this situation, investing in a hybrid cloud solution offers a unique advantage, as it seamlessly integrates your existing on-premises resources with powerful cloud capabilities, providing flexibility and enhanced performance. But does it truly offer everything it promises to?

In this blog, we will explain what hybrid cloud entails, and explore four key business advantages of hybrid cloud solutions, helping you make an informed decision for your company’s future.

What is the hybrid cloud?

The hybrid cloud is a computing environment that combines on-premises data centers with public and private cloud services. This integration allows businesses of all sizes to leverage the benefits of both traditional IT infrastructure and digital-based cloud computing platforms.

For SMBs, the hybrid cloud model offers a flexible infrastructure solution where critical data and applications can remain on-premises for cybersecurity and compliance, while less sensitive workloads can be processed in the cloud. This setup optimizes your resource use, enhances data security, and allows for scalability without the need for significant upfront investments.

Today, there is a significant number of organizations around the world that have adopted the hybrid cloud IT infrastructure model as their new standard, with reports by companies such as Nutanix reporting almost half (46%) of their survey participants indicating they have moved to the hybrid cloud model, with flexibility ro run solutions across on-premises and cloud environments listed as the number one driver toward deploying the hybrid cloud model.

What is the difference between hybrid cloud and other models?

In the broader context of cloud computing solutions, the hybrid cloud stands out by providing a middle ground between public and private clouds. 

Public clouds, like those offered by Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Microsoft Azure, provide vast, scalable resources that are cost-effective, but may raise security concerns. Private clouds, on the other hand, offer enhanced security and control, but can be expensive to maintain.

By combining these models, the hybrid cloud enables your business to enjoy the best of both worlds. Your SMB can scale its operations efficiently, respond quickly to market changes, and maintain robust security practices, all while keeping costs under control. This balanced approach makes the hybrid cloud a strategic choice, especially for rapidly growing businesses.

Hybrid cloud business advantage #1: Cost-efficiency

Adopting a hybrid cloud can significantly reduce IT expenses, especially for SMBs. By leveraging both on-premises infrastructure and public cloud resources, your business can avoid the high upfront costs of hardware, and only pay for the cloud services you wish to use.

This pay-as-you-go (PAYG) model ensures that your business can scale IT resources according to demand without overspending, which is a common issue for many small businesses. Additionally, the hybrid cloud reduces the need for extensive physical data centers, lowering maintenance and operational costs. This financial flexibility allows SMBs to allocate resources to other critical areas of their business, driving growth and innovation.

According to an annual cloud predictions survey conducted by Forrester Research, small and large companies using hybrid cloud solutions reported cost savings of up to 17% on their IT infrastructure expenses due to optimized resource utilization and reduced need for physical hardware. An AWS case study about Dow Jones, which saw its move to a hybrid cloud model using AWS Cloud, helped realize slightly higher cost savings of 25% (more than $40,000 USD per year) compared to their previous costs associated with leasing a physical data center for hardware. Both examples highlight the significant cost benefits of the hybrid cloud model today.

Hybrid clouds offer many advantages for SMBs

Hybrid cloud business advantage #2: Enhanced flexibility and scalability

A hybrid cloud environment provides unmatched flexibility and scalability, which is crucial for your SMB if you are navigating fluctuating workloads. 

With cloud platforms, your business can easily scale operations up or down based on demand, ensuring optimal performance without overcommitting resources. The way their model works is to allow companies to reach out for more resources (servers, services, etc) when required. This adaptability is particularly beneficial during peak seasons or rapid growth phases.

With the ability to balance on-premises and cloud resources, your SMB can respond to market changes and customer needs faster, and maintain a competitive edge much easier than just relying on legacy or traditional IT solutions and infrastructure alone. 

According to a study by Spiceworks, 57% of SMBs plan to adopt hybrid cloud solutions to benefit from improved flexibility and scalability, underscoring the importance of hybrid cloud environments for small and medium-sized businesses looking to scale operations efficiently.

The hybrid cloud’s flexibility also supports diverse workloads and applications (such as allowing you to use legacy apps limited to older operating systems, while still benefiting from newer cloud-based services), enabling seamless integration and efficient resource management.

Hybrid cloud business advantage #3: Improved security and compliance

Cybersecurity is a top priority for SMBs, and the hybrid cloud offers robust cloud security solutions

By keeping sensitive data on-premises and utilizing the cloud for less critical workloads, your company can ensure better control and protection of information. This setup also helps meet industry-specific compliance requirements and safeguards against potential data breaches. 

Additionally, cloud providers often offer advanced security features and regular updates, enhancing overall data protection. The hybrid approach allows your SMB to leverage these security advancements, while maintaining direct oversight of your most crucial assets.

According to a survey by the Ponemon Institute (via IBM), organizations of all sizes that adopted hybrid cloud solutions reported a 51% improvement in their ability to meet regulatory data compliance requirements, owing to better data control and security practices.

Hybrid cloud business advantage #4: Better business continuity

The hybrid cloud ensures robust business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) solutions, which is vital for your SMB. 

By distributing data and applications across on-premises and cloud environments, companies can safeguard against unexpected disruptions. In case of a hardware failure or natural disaster, critical data stored in the cloud remains accessible, minimizing downtime and data loss. 

Cloud providers also offer automated backup and recovery services, streamlining the process and reducing the burden on your internal IT teams. This added resilience can help you to better maintain operations during emergencies, protecting your business reputation and bottom line.

A 2023 study by Veeam found that 73% of organizations reported improved BCDR capabilities after implementing hybrid cloud solutions. These improvements included faster recovery times and better data protection, again highlighting the benefits of these solutions in the area of security.

The business advantages of a hybrid cloud: Next steps

It’s clear that adopting a hybrid cloud solution offers four key advantages: cost efficiency, enhanced flexibility and scalability, improved security and compliance, and robust business continuity and disaster recovery capabilities. But what if your SMB doesn’t quite have the internal expertise or IT department to help guide your hybrid cloud solution search?

Consider partnering with a managed services provider (MSP) specializing in cloud computing solutions and support to help design, implement, and manage your hybrid cloud environments efficiently. This partnership allows you to align your requirements with the right hybrid cloud platform, while being able to focus on core operations instead of managing the transition. 

Speak with the SparkNav team today to learn how you can begin benefiting from the enhanced capabilities and cost savings of a hybrid cloud infrastructure model.

Robert Griffin
Robert Griffin
As COO, Robert Griffin plays an instrumental role in aligning operational excellence with strategic goals by leveraging his decades of experience in enterprise leadership. With deep knowledge and expertise in security, governance, risk, and compliance (GRC), and AI, his insights are often shared through thought leadership channels, including LinkedIn and blogs. → Follow Robert on LinkedIn.
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