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Cost savings still in short supply for cloud users, Druva research suggests

Enterprises are increasingly moving their virtual workloads to the cloud for ease of management reasons, but cost savings remain elusive for many, suggests Druva’s latest report on cloud virtualisation

Businesses are still struggling to achieve cost savings when shifting their virtualised workloads to the cloud, according to the 2018 edition of Druva’s State of virtualisation in the cloud report.

The findings suggest that, while the number of organisations running virtual machines (VMs) in the cloud is steadily rising, many businesses are yet to save any money as a result of shifting their workloads off-premise.

The report, compiled using feedback from 170 respondents, shows that between 2017 and this year, the percentage of organisations running virtual machines in the cloud rose by 10 percentage points to 41%, but 53% of respondents said the move had not saved their organisation any money.

According to the report’s authors, the lack of reported efficiency savings could be down to several factors, including an over-reliance on scripted cloud orchestration procedures.

“The journey to move virtual workloads to the cloud isn’t without challenges. For example, nearly three-quarters of respondents are over-reliant on processes prone to error, or operating with uncertainty about the status of their data – and that creates risk and hurts efficiencies,” the report states.

On that point, Dave Packer, vice-president of products and alliances at Druva, said: “The cloud forces organisations – and vendors – to be more disciplined in how they approach consumption of cloud resources.

“While the benefits of moving to the cloud are huge, the visibility and data management requirements are higher to ensure organisations realise cost savings, which is why more than 53% of respondents are still struggling to hit that target,” he added.

That said, cost savings are not the be-all and end-all for cloud users, as just 19% of respondents said they were using off-premise technologies because they were less expensive, with ease of management emerging as the most important reason to use cloud for 26% of respondents.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) emerged as the favoured destination for respondents’ cloud workloads, with 59% citing it as their preferred provider, followed by Microsoft (35%), Google (4%) and IBM Softlayer (2%).

The report also quizzed respondents on whether or not they preferred to use native AWS for their virtual machines or make use of the VMware Cloud on AWS service to run them, with 34% opting for the former, while 25% said the latter.

The service launched in the UK in March 2018 and is effectively a joint play by VMware and AWS to court enterprises intent on running hybrid cloud environments, as it allows enterprises to run vSphere-based virtual machines in the AWS public cloud.

Steven Hill, senior analyst for storage technologies at market watcher 451 Research, said having access to this kind of workload flexibility was becoming increasingly important to enterprises.

“No matter where a business falls in its journey to the cloud, one thing is clear: understanding the role the cloud can play within virtual environments has become an integral part of most IT initiatives,” he said.

“Companies that employ a hybrid strategy should look to the cloud as a flexible extension of their on-premise infrastructure, where the challenge often lies in making movements to and from the cloud both seamless and reliable.”

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