7 Workloads That IT Should Move to the Cloud Right Now

As part of strategic trends for 2021, Gartner has identified seven workloads that organizations should move to the Cloud to support remote working.
Susan Fourtané
Cloud adoption continues to support remote workers gremlin/iStock

By 2024, more than 45 percent of IT spending on system infrastructure, infrastructure software, application software, and business process outsourcing will shift from traditional solutions to Cloud, according to industry analyst Gartner. In 2021, this evolution will make Cloud computing one of the most continually disruptive forces in IT markets since the early days of the digital age. 

Cloud adoption in 2020 pushed organizations to adopt and use Cloud services for new initiatives. IT leaders increasingly use Cloud services to replace existing systems. In other words, spending on traditional IT solutions is being reallocated to Cloud. This results in what Gartner calls Cloud shift, which is a shift to public Cloud computing. This is creating an increasing opportunity for IT leaders to enable digital business transformation. This is possible due to a growing preference for Cloud-first.

The latest Gartner IT spending forecast for 2020 shows that projected spending on data center systems decreases 10 percent from 2019, that is equivalent to a $188 billion decrease in 2020. On the other hand, spending on Cloud system infrastructure services is expected to grow from $44 billion in 2019 to $63 billion in 2020, reaching $81 billion by 2022.

Remote working puts focus on Cloud services

Cloud adoption will continue to accelerate as key workloads are paramount to support remote workers. The already long-lasting Covid-19 pandemic has dramatically increased the number of remote workers. Despite all the disruption that the pandemic has caused and will continue to cause in all industries it has also showcased the many benefits of Cloud services.

During his presentation at the virtual Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo® 2020, Ed Anderson, Distinguished VP Analyst at Gartner, said that by 2022, 75 percent of organizations that implemented work-from-home policies for their workforce during Covid-19 will retain the remote working options for their employees. “Cloud adoption will continue to accelerate as key workloads are needed to support remote workers and maintain data center operations,” Anderson said.

Gartner predicts opportunity to move key workloads to the Cloud after the pandemic not only for the many benefits Cloud offers today but also as a necessary step to prepare for any future unforeseen disruption. 

Gartner highly recommends prioritizing public Cloud environments to host critical workloads. The recommendation includes seven key workloads that, according to Gartner, organizations should be moving to the Cloud now. 

Here are the seven workloads that should be moved to the Cloud as we speak:

1. Cloud Mobility

cloud mobility
Cloud is the ideal back-end for supporting mobile solutions. Source: gremlin/iStock 

Remote working could not be possible without mobile devices, applications, and access to organizations' key services and data. Cloud is the ideal back-end for supporting mobile solutions thanks to the demand variability related to mobile services which is well-aligned with the adaptive Cloud operating model. 

“Select a hyperscale Cloud partner that offers robust capabilities in supporting mobile applications,” Anderson said. "Explore the full capabilities of the hosting Cloud platform, including the incorporation of Cloud-native technology implementations and operating models." 

2. Collaboration and content management

cloud management
Cloud-based enterprise collaboration applications facilitate collaboration between remote workers. Source: gremlin/iStock

Collaboration applications are paramount in the enterprise and remote working. Microsoft Office 365, iWork, and Google G Suite are just three examples of successful Cloud-based enterprise applications that facilitate collaboration. Cloud-based collaboration enables the possibility of more remote access, and meets resiliency requirements.

3. Video-conferencing

cloud computing
Video-conferencing technology has doubled and even tripled in some markets. Source: Viacheslav Peretiatko/iStock 

Video-conferencing is one of the most important and perhaps basic tools for global remote workers and no mistake. At the start of Covid-19, when everyone was trying to figure out how to keep on working in physical isolation, the demand for video-conferencing technology doubled. In some markets, it even tripled. The demand for networking bandwidth makes hyperscale Cloud providers well-suited to reliably deliver video-conferencing solutions. 

4. Virtual desktops and remote workstation management 

mobile cloud
Cloud-based desktop virtualization has already become mainstream. Source: gremlin/iStock

A virtual desktop solution --also called desktop virtualization-- is a tool that has been around for some time and is used by IT administrators to separate the physical desktop system such as laptops from the desktop environment and applications used by individuals. 

Through desktop virtualization, remote workers can access their applications and documents while staying connected from any geographical location. Cloud-based desktop virtualization has become mainstream, providing a more stable and scalable control point than traditional data-center-based solutions.

5. Scale-out applications 

mobile cloud
Hyperscale Cloud environments have established a credible business case for Cloud platforms. Source: gremlin/iStock

Scale-out applications are the ones that benefit from adding additional computing resources to satisfy increases in demand. Gartner says that the demand for scale-out applications has inspired organizations to migrate data center applications to Cloud platforms and the sudden shift in IT operating models has further accelerated this trend. 

Hyperscale Cloud environments have established a credible business case for Cloud platforms, making cloud the preferred environment for hosting applications with variable usage or scale-out requirements.

6. Disaster recovery

disaster recovery cloud
 50 percent of organizations will increase their budgets to include cloud-based disaster recovery. Source: gremlin/iStock 

Gartner predictions say that 50 percent of organizations will increase their budgets to include cloud-based disaster recovery (DR) solutions by 2023. 

Ed Anderson said that "the cost-effectiveness of using a pay-per-use environment to support unexpected failover requirements that Cloud-based disaster recovery solutions offer is sought after in current times.” Now is the right time to deploy these solutions.

7. Business continuity solutions

cloud and business continuity
Cloud becomes increasingly mainstream in 2021. Source: gremlin/iStock 

Business continuity ensures that business processes continue functioning before, during, and after a crisis. According to Gartner analysts, in 2020, only 12 percent of Gartner survey respondents said their business operations were continuing as normal as a result of Covid-19. 

For Gartner, redundancies in the Cloud operating environment mean that Cloud environments are inherently resilient and offer availability guarantees much greater than what most private data centers can support. 

As Cloud becomes increasingly mainstream in 2021 and throughout 2024, it will dominate ever-increasing portions of enterprise IT decisions.

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