Companies continue to manage changes made over the last few months, with many more employees working remotely. As this trend moves forward, businesses are starting to make a shift in their IT investments, taking advantage of new opportunities and/or shoring up gaps found in their infrastructure.
What areas are best for businesses to focus on when it comes to optimising IT spend? What are the current trends in IT spending?
Backups to Operations
The cloud was once viewed as a perfect solution for online backups and recovery. However, these days, businesses are beginning to see the cloud in a new light. Now, rather than a backup and recovery service, the cloud is becoming an essential element of day-to-day business operations.
This means more companies are looking to migrate to the cloud. They see the value of increased productivity, efficiency, and flexibility that the cloud brings.
This change in perspective, along with the need to support remote workers, is driving the change in IT spend and the adaption of cloud services.
Adapting to the Times
In the past year, companies have been experimenting with new technologies and utilities to support their operations and remote employees. The technologies are those that make it easier for employees to work from almost anywhere outside of the regular workplace.
With these changes, major investments in cloud computing have taken over the spend in on-premises IT infrastructure. As we move farther into the year, more companies are expected to adopt SaaS and the cloud. As these changes take place, IT spend will decrease for on-site networks (including technology), data centres, and software.
Businesses of all sizes are finding huge benefits with the change to cloud and SaaS services. They’ve found that while mobility has increased, company operations have survived the move to the cloud. In addition, they’ve also seen an increase in efficiency and productivity with the adoption of cloud services.
Managed Cloud Solutions
Another area of growth for IT spend has been in the adoption of managed cloud services. These services include:
- Managed hosting
- Hardware support
- Data backup and storage
- Managed remote security
Managed cloud services are generally more cost-effective than an in-house IT department managing everything on their own. With managed services, in-house IT departments are able to focus on other IT and business strategies.
Managed services provide several benefits, including:
- Cost savings: money is saved on maintaining an on-premises infrastructure.
- Upgrades are automatic: the service provider ensures the network and all software are updated on a regular basis. They also keep an eye on new developments to upgrade the infrastructure.
- Disaster recovery: if a major disaster occurs, the managed service provider will have a disaster recovery plan ready to get the company back up and running quickly.
- Rapid response: the managed service provider offers support around the clock when needed.
- Security: network security is enhanced through the use of a managed service provider. The provider has the knowledge needed to ensure the network stays secure from cyberattacks.
These benefits are a huge advantage for companies that take advantage of managed IT services. They’re farther ahead than companies that take a wait-and-see attitude to managed cloud services.
Improved Employee Experience
Businesses are also seeing the need for an improved employee experience when it comes to working in locations outside of the normal workplace. They’ve seen the benefits of maintaining flexibility with remote workers.
To improve their employee experience, companies have looked to better communication tools, network monitoring tools, network improvements, enhanced security solutions, and more. The goal is to connect employees with platforms that are user-friendly while at the same time increasing productivity and efficiency.
Cloud Automation Tools
Another important change in IT spend comes with cloud automation tools. This change has developed from the increasing complexity in IT environments. Keeping everything up and running, updated, secure, and running smoothly has become a challenge for in-house IT teams.
Automation tools make use of AI, which is seen as a significant development this year. Automation will include dashboards that provide an overview of multi-cloud business operations and more.
Multi-Cloud & Hybrid Cloud
The move to multi-cloud and hybrid cloud services, once thought of as a future development, is now becoming a reality. Multi-cloud is the use of more than one cloud service, which may involve several vendors, depending on the company’s needs.
On the other hand, a hybrid cloud service is a combination of a private cloud with one or more public cloud services. This involves the use of proprietary software, which enables communication between the services.
Many companies are choosing to use a multi-cloud service in order to keep costs under control. It’s also seen as a way to keep control of company resources rather than in the hands of the cloud service provider. For one thing, no single vendor is in control of the network and data. In addition, a multi-cloud solution also increases competition between the cloud services, which can keep prices lower.
Desktop as a Service (DaaS)
Another solution that companies are turning to is Desktop as a Service (DaaS). This is a type of virtual computing service, which provides cloud-based workspaces to employees. The service uses a physical terminal (a laptop, tablet, etc.) to communicate with the workspace hosted by the company’s cloud service provider.
DaaS is beneficial because it works to cut costs, time, and even legal issues when an employee loses their laptop. In this instance, there’s no need to worry about data being stolen, as all company data is stored in the cloud. All apps, data, and more are accessed securely in the cloud. Sensitive data is no longer stored on a device.
This is a huge benefit, too, for employees working from home. They no longer have to worry excessively about the security of their devices or accessing the company network from their own devices.
What’s more, the DaaS model can save money, with the service based on a subscription model. This means businesses only pay for the services they need rather than a perpetual license.
Summing It Up
With the need to support a changing workforce and optimise IT spend, companies are finding the cloud brings innovative, flexible solutions that fit their operations and their budgets.
The combination of cloud services and in-house IT infrastructure offers a cost-effective solution that many businesses can’t afford to pass up.
23rd February 2024
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