Cliff Evans, Private Cloud Lead at Microsoft UK, attended a recent CIO roundtable to discuss the role that private cloud can play in large companies and the opportunities and challenges it presents for IT leaders.
Everyone talks about the cloud but, really, there are several types of cloud. Most people are familiar with public cloud technology like Windows Azure or Microsoft Office 365; it runs on the vendor’s hardware and you access it over the internet.
But large companies are also increasingly adopting private cloud technology. This is where in-house systems host applications and services which are delivered to the rest of the business in a cloud-like way.
Organisations are adopting public cloud services and, at the same time, moving towards private cloud services using their existing data centres. This kind of hybrid IT means that IT decision-makers have more choices and more opportunities than ever before.
This was the subject of a recent CIO roundtable. I joined a group of IT leaders from pharmaceutical companies, the energy sector, telecommunications, IT and engineering to discuss the issue. Several themes emerged:
Overall, I found it very encouraging that there's such a strong belief in the notion of the private cloud. It's very real. It's not a conceptual thing. At the same time, most of the attendees were also using or evaluating public cloud services and the future for all of them is likely to be a hybrid mix of public and private cloud services. This is the new reality and it’s enabling them to be agents of change and the creators of new opportunities for their employers.By Cliff Evans, Private Cloud Lead at Microsoft UK