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Previously, I blogged on changes we see happening to how enterprises are procuring their data protection technologies. Increasingly, they are shifting to the cloud, for at least a portion of their protection environments. During this process, there are some tradeoffs that need to be considered, however. In this second blog of a four-part series, we will discuss what is arguably the biggest driver to the cloud for IT Operations – the ability to streamline operations compared to on-premises implementations.
IT Operations teams are constrained for headcount, time, and talent. In fact, 28% of respondents in our recent Trends in Enterprise Data Protection 2023 study cited insufficient staff/headcount as a top challenge they face with their current data protection solution. This trailed only limited budget (39%) and high solution costs (30%), which are perennial issues that consistently impact the data protection space (in other words, data protection is largely viewed as an expensive insurance policy, and there is always pressure to minimize costs associated with it).
This challenge is addressed with off-premises deployment models because the tasks of deploying, configuring, monitoring, updating, and scaling hardware infrastructure and software licenses are all handled by the service provider. Of course, there are exceptions depending on the use case, but these tasks are at least mitigated for IT Operations.
Further helping to streamlining day-to-day operations is the fact that controls for backup-as-a-service solutions are generally greatly simplified, when compared to their traditional on-premises counterparts that are notorious for requiring extensive, detailed training on complicated administrative tasks. Not only do the user interfaces of these solutions tend to be designed for simplicity, they also typically tend to utilize a greater amount of automation. Administrators can create protection policies that encompass backup schedules, retention policies, and other features such as data deduplication and efficiency, and the solution then automatically discovers, and applies the protection policies to, the resources being protected. This can potentially reduce the chance of misconfigurations and streamline change control management processes, including updating protection policies as business requirements change, for IT Operations.
Arguably the most significant upside of streamlining data protection operations is freeing IT Operations to become more strategic to the business. This is relevant because of the crucial impact that IT has on competitive advantage and growth, risk mitigation, and business continuity; it is imperative from a longevity standpoint that IT Operations teams evolve into this strategic asset.
Disclosure: The Futurum Group is a research and advisory firm that engages or has engaged in research, analysis, and advisory services with many technology companies, including those mentioned in this article. The author does not hold any equity positions with any company mentioned in this article.
Analysis and opinions expressed herein are specific to the analyst individually and data and other information that might have been provided for validation, not those of The Futurum Group as a whole.
Other insights from The Futurum Group:
How to Migrate Data Protection to the Cloud and Not Regret It
Oracle Cloud Infrastructure: New Features and Database Portfolio Capabilities Boost Market Momentum
SAP Introduces SAP Datasphere, Next Generation Cloud Data Warehouse Service
Krista covers data protection and management, with a focus on multi-cloud environments, for The Futurum Group. She brings approximately a decade of experience providing research and advisory services and creating thought leadership content, with a focus on IT infrastructure and data management and protection. Her vantage point spans technology and vendor portfolio developments; customer buying behavior trends; vendor ecosystems, go-to-market positioning, and business models. Her work has appeared in major publications, including eWeek, TechTarget, and The Register.