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June 23, 2020
Three full months after COVID-19 pushed U.S. organizations to follow their overseas counterparts into supporting remote work, the impact of that shift on IT continues to grow ever more apparent. The latest in a series of findings from cloud vendors, in particular, comes from Virtana. And the results in the report, “The Current State of Hybrid Cloud and IT,” point to enterprises’ irrefutable need for strong partner guidance.
The main reason? Firms that stopped their cloud migrations during the pandemic were (and are) two-and-a-half times more likely to suffer IT outages that hurt their SLAs, Virtana found.
Keep up with the latest developments in how the channel is supporting partners and customers during the COVID-19 crisis.
Virtana’s Chris Carvacho
“The channel needs to offer cloud migration expertise to check that their customers are ready to migrate or if further work is needed,” Chris Carvacho, vice president of OEM and channel at Virtana, told Channel Futures. “By benchmarking before migration and testing workloads in the new hosted environment, you can show your customer what to expect a migration will deliver. [This] helps create a strong bond as a key adviser.”
On the other hand, businesses that stayed the cloud course experienced few outages. They also had fewer visibility and performance problems, Virtana found in its assessment of the state of hybrid cloud. Partners should play a role in steering those ongoing efforts and look for opportunities to help organizations still struggling.
One way to do this is to remove the burden of cloud management. Virtana says thatt since COVID-19 appeared, IT leaders are spending more time and resources overseeing systems and infrastructure. To that point, more than half (56%) of respondents said the time they devote working across multiple systems to create a single report on IT bandwidth and resources has increased. Similarly, more than half (55%) also said they’ve had to overprovision to ensure performance; among organizations that put the brakes on cloud migrations, that figure rose to 86%.
Virtana’s Ron Sege
“Almost two-thirds of those who overprovisioned reported having KPI-busting outages — twice that of those who didn’t halt their cloud migrations,” Ron Sege, CEO of Virtana, said. “There are clear lessons to be learned in the running of IT operations in today’s climate.”
In addition, nearly four in five (79%) respondents are enduring IT performance issues and don’t have the tools to fix the problem. Instead, the vast majority (84%) have reacted by overprovisioning cloud platforms. On top of that, more than half of respondents agree they do not have access to the correct support services. Nearly three in four (74%) who halted cloud migrations lack IT systems visibility overall.
On the whole, this all generates inefficiencies that cost organizations in labor, time and technology waste. And performance sputters will likely frustrate end users, which contributes another layer of complexity. Managed service providers, VARs and other channel experts stand out prime candidates to take over all those responsibilities.
Virtana’s Carvacho recommends partners lean on hybrid-cloud migration products that feature artificial intelligence and machine learning. (That suggestion should come as no surprise, given that these capabilities comprise Virtana’s specialty.) He further offers a way to help overcome organizations’ inevitable objections to spending money on technology right now. Even as executives remain painfully aware of costs amid COVID-19, they must understand that expanding their cloud strategies to support remote work is imperative. Address this concern “by mapping application dependencies and performance,” Cavacho said.
Taking that approach means “the channel can show cost savings and capacities before investment is made,” the report said. Then, after partners get a client’s cloud environment up to par, the outcomes will speak for themselves. Think reduced or eliminated outages, improved performance, detailed visibility and happier end users.
Sign up for Channel Futures’ new EMEA newsletter, where we feature news and analysis involving companies based in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, as well as those doing business in that region.
Virtana polled 116 decision-makers in IT, digital infrastructure and cloud engineering for the state of hybrid cloud report. Respondents were in the U.S. and EMEA.
Contributing Editor, Channel Futures
Kelly Teal has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist, editor and analyst, with longtime expertise in the indirect channel. She worked on the Channel Partners magazine staff for 11 years. Kelly now is principal of Kreativ Energy LLC.
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