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Is Your Cloud Storage “Enterprise-ready”?


in Cloud

”Enterprise-ready

In early 2016, the 451 Group released a report that forecasted public cloud storage spending to double the current spending percentage by 2017. Cloud storage growth has accelerated over the last few years as companies look to benefit from the scale, efficiency and reduced total cost of ownership provided by off-premises services relative to traditional on-premises storage – which with few exceptions has been waning.

The tyranny of choice?

But, as we have seen with this growing market, new entrants have quickly found their way into the space, presenting new options and choices. With hundreds of options to choose from, prices fall and buyers benefit. However, too many options can also create problems for some buyers who want to leverage cloud, but are also looking for simplicity. Today, there are many service options to choose beyond just capacity, including geography, data protection and access. Depending on your requirements, choosing cloud storage can be a time consuming activity with the potential for significant risk if approached without a plan.

Look to your on-premises IT for guidance

While the definition of “enterprise-ready” cloud storage varies widely, a simple rule of thumb for choosing cloud storage is to establish a framework to preserve “business as usual” and reduce risk while also improving IT capabilities. What does this mean?

Fortunately, most cloud storage buyers already have their own proven framework in place to use as a guide – their existing data requirements. Whether data moves to archive, backup or a lower tier of storage, it’s critical that buyers’ existing data requirements are met.

The second question to ask is how will the cloud storage improve IT capabilities? Are specific benefits required? Not all clouds are created equal, but certain cloud characteristics are considered industry standard. The difference is in how far the vendor goes beyond these standards.

Here is a quick list of criteria to consider when looking at cloud storage providers:

1. Scalability and flexibility
These are standard cloud benefits. If the vendor’s cloud storage is not scalable and flexible to meet your IT needs, look elsewhere.

2. Security and compliance
Deploying application data in the cloud is no longer limited to non-business critical data, or non-sensitive data. Sensitive data, such as health records, are now finding their way to the cloud. As a result, security and compliance is a must, and cloud buyers should focus on industry standard certifications and audits for ISO, PCI, HIPAA and SOC 2.

3. Integration with existing investments
Whether the use case is for simple cloud tiering, archive or long term retention of backups, all data goes through a lifecycle. Seamless cloud tiering allows the automated movement of data to the appropriate tier based on business value by policy.

4. Enterprise level availability
Buyers should focus on availability without compromise – meaning, an availability SLA that meets enterprise needs WITHOUT exclusions.

5. Durability and resilience
The top cloud providers offer a data durability number that reflects the cloud infrastructures data protection capabilities. Some go beyond and offer uninterrupted read access in the event of an unplanned site outage.

6. Predictability and simplicity costs
Customers continue to voice their concerns over pricing complexity with cloud services. Cloud buyers should look for that is simple and easy to predict over time.

7. Support from datacenter to cloud
“Enterprise-ready” cloud storage providers should be able to provide support process from datacenter to cloud.

Most enterprises need to manage the risk of transitioning to cloud while maintaining business status quo. By establishing specific cloud storage criteria, and using these seven guidelines listed when you approach a cloud storage provider, you will be able to collect an ample amount of information and be able to determine if that cloud provider is right for your enterprise. At the same time, when choosing a cloud storage provider, it pays to consider vendors you know for delivering industry leading, on-premises storage solutions to the enterprise.

When it comes to delivering these industry leading storage solutions, Virtustream has the distinct advantage of being a part of one of the most formidable technology businesses today – Dell Technologies. By adhering and adapting to your enterprises specific storage needs, Virtustream Storage Cloud can assist your enterprise in securing, managing and storing mission-critical data in the cloud – while meeting the “enterprise-ready” IT and data capabilities your business requires today.

Justin Augat
Storage Cloud Marketing

Twitter @JustinAugat

This entry was posted in Cloud