As cloud data centers continue to become more capable, the debate between investing more in cloud or local hardware continues—but we say, why not both? Hybrid architecture (cloud services combined with local hardware) provides a truly versatile and capable solution. Ultimately the decision should depend on what your customers’ needs are, but here are four reasons why you should recommend investing in hybrid technology during their next purchasing cycle:
A lot of companies fail to properly plan for disaster recovery (DR). This could be because DR seems too expensive or because they feel they’re immune from any sort of unforeseen hardware failure. But DR prep doesn’t have to be expensive since many cloud models only require you to pay for what you need, making it very cost-effective. If your customers rely solely on hardware long enough, they’re bound to experience some form of unexpected failure. That’s why incorporating the cloud into every hardware refresh is important, and even incremental investments make a difference. Consider this real-world use case: imagine one of your customer’s businesses was in the path of a hurricane. Hybrid architecture would allow them to upload important data to a cloud data center indefinitely and then be pulled back down when the facility was secure.
Hardware-only purchase cycles can be tedious. There’s lots of research that needs to be done to determine exactly what’s needed, plus you have to ensure the various components are both compatible and able to perform. Also, when customers make a hardware purchase, they’re stuck with that hardware for a few years at least. But with the cloud, the opposite is true. Virtual data centers can do essentially everything physical hardware can and (for the most part) will be compatible with any hardware or software you can think of. But perhaps the most attractive feature is that cloud resources can be added (or subtracted) immediately. There’s no research or assembly necessary to add additional servers when needed.
Perhaps even more than price, end users are looking for performance. If your customers can’t get the job done, their users will look elsewhere. That’s why minimizing downtime and guaranteeing availability of services is critical. Hybrid architecture was built to excel in this area. Think about it this way: whatever your customers’ current hardware is good at, use it for that and leverage the cloud for everything else. If your customer’s hardware can handle large processing-intensive workloads, great. Then they should use the cloud for storage, or vice versa. You can also prioritize critical services and leverage cloud redundancy so that they’re always available. The idea with hybrid architecture is to fill whatever holes exist so companies can deliver more comprehensive services to their end users. Less downtime and better performance mean happier customers.
As Virtual data center services become more powerful, their user interfaces are also becoming simpler and easier to use. In fact, it’s now possible to consolidate a customer’s entire suite of resources to a single web portal. Managing resources (spinning up new servers, removing unused storage space) can all be done seamlessly from one spot. Contrast that with a 100% hardware operation—which requires you to work with multiple vendors and keep track of hardware purchases, licenses and compatibility—and the choice becomes even more simple. By allowing hybrid architecture to streamline operations and by prioritizing workloads and leveraging the cloud, customer hardware can become more efficient, allowing them to accomplish more than ever before.
For more information on how hybrid architecture can help your customers, contact the experts at Ingram Micro.
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