Dell Technologies BrandVoice: Why Optionality Matters in a Multicloud World


Developers require flexibility as they navigate a multicloud world. Options to move resources from on-premises estates to the public cloud and vice versa can help.

The average person doesn’t give much thought to the technologies they use—as long as they work.

IT leaders don’t have that luxury. They must care not only where and how their corporate technologies run, but how much it costs to run them.

They may ask: Will they see a return on their investment from their choices or, better yet, grow revenues? Will the tools they use help ladder up to successful digital transformation or end up on the scrap heap?

Accordingly, where and how CIOs run their software workloads matter more than ever. They require new options as they navigate a rapidly evolving operating model.

Related: More Clouds, No Problem: Simplifying Your Multi-Cloud World

Sea Change, Courtesy of the Cloud

A fundamental shift is afoot in how IT departments operate. Asset accumulation—from mergers, acquisitions and other business events—have forced many organizations to operate a mix of on-premises, colocation facilities, edge devices and public cloud environments.

For example, 40 percent of 242 IT Dells polled in a Dell internal survey1 prefer to run data protection and cyber recovery services on-premises, while 37% prefer to run them in a mix of on-premises and public clouds. The trend extends to ERP workloads, with 35% for organizations keeping them in-house and 34% balancing between on-premises and public clouds.

Which means IT leaders have some hard decisions to make regarding the best place to run workloads. They must flip that default model to a multicloud-by-design model.

This is going to look different for every organization, but what’s critical is enabling organizations to run efficiently at scale, while meeting digital transformation imperatives. The key to this? Empowering developers to innovate at a high velocity—and with a consistent cloud experience.

Optionality is No Longer an Option

Software developers love to move fast, often writing and rewriting code until they produce something that resembles a working application.

But the traditional IT procurement process is such that developers might wait weeks or months for resources. The public cloud caters to developers’ need for speed, offering self-service tools that make programming tools and infrastructure available on-demand.

However, changes to compliance regulations have forced developers and IT departments to adapt to a more controlled reality. For instance, rules regarding data sovereignty and security govern where organizations can store data, including stipulations requiring workloads to be hosted on-premises.

Such regulatory challenges can make running workloads in the public cloud complex or even prohibitive. This poses a dilemma for IT leaders, who must meet compliance considerations while offering a consistent cloud experience that satisfies developers’ preferences for convenience.

As it happens, there are ways to blend the best of both worlds: Running on-premises resources in the public cloud and/or running public cloud services in their own data centers. Such approaches provide developers more options for how and where to run workloads while meeting corporate safeguards.

Options For Meeting in the Middle

The two emerging scenarios are called ground-to-cloud and cloud-to-ground.

In the ground-to-cloud approach, IT staff run resources, such as storage and data backup services, in public cloud platforms. For instance, organizations can enable larger databases supporting ERP and other critical applications to burst in the public cloud, scaling based on business demand.

So developers get the performance boost they need to run their workloads while leveraging IT’s existing infrastructure investments.

Conversely, the cloud-to-ground approach enables developers to accelerate the development of cloud-native applications while benefiting from storage located on premises. This helps IT staff inspect and audit assets, which helps mitigate compliance, privacy and risk concerns.

Cloud-to-ground also enables developers to use preferred public cloud services, such as data analytics or machine learning, locally.

By providing such operational flexibility, these two options help organizations put compute resources closer to apps, improving performance while meeting compliance and security requirements.

The case for both

Ultimately only you will know what’s the optimal configuration for your organization. But having the option to deploy both cloud-to-ground and ground-to-cloud strategies gives you the most opportunities to combine the benefits of the public cloud with the security and control of on-premises environments.

Our Dell APEX portfolio of services supports both ground-to-cloud and cloud-to-ground scenarios. This includes enabling organizations to run public cloud workloads on-premises in cloud-native development orchestration platforms and storage of their choice.

Because in a multicloud-by-design world, running workloads how and where you want with simplicity, agility and control is critical.

Keep Reading: Why the Hybrid Workplace Needs a Hybrid IT Model

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